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State of Play: here's how the promotion and relegation races look in the National Football League

Who said that the league doesn’t matter?

Down: on the cusp of a place in the Division 1 semi-finals.
Down: on the cusp of a place in the Division 1 semi-finals.
Image: ©INPHO/Cathal Noonan

THERE’S STILL A huge amount to play for across the divisions as we get down to the business end of the league season.

Are your county still gunning for promotion or looking over their shoulder for fear of relegation? Or is the season’s climax shaping up to be a bit of a dead rubber, for whatever reason?

Here’s how the standings look at present.

Division 1

Semi-final places: The permutations at both ends of the table will become a lot clearer when Mayo (4 pts) play Dublin (6 pts) next weekend in the refixture of their match which was abandoned at half-time due to poor visibility.

As it stands, Kerry (10 pts) are the only team guaranteed to finish in the top four and take their place in the semi-finals; for the rest, eight points is the magic number, although that much might not even be necessary depending on how results pan out.

The winner of Cork’s (7 pts) meeting with Dublin on the final weekend will definitely take one of the four spots, as will Down (6 pts) if they can beat Laois in O’Moore Park.

Relegation: Mathematically, there are four teams still in danger of finishing in the bottom two and relegation to Division 2 — Armagh (5 pts), Mayo, Donegal and Laois (all 4).

Division 2

Promotion: With six wins from six, Tyrone know that they’ve already wrapped up a place in the Division 2 final and their promotion, regardless of their result against Monaghan on the final weekend.

They will be joined by either Kildare (8pts) or Galway (7pts), who meet in a straight promotion shootout in Tuam on 8 April. A draw will do for Kildare, while Galway know that they need to win.

Relegation: The battle to avoid relegation to Division 3 is wide open, with five teams still mathematically in danger of the drop. Derry are best placed to survive with five points while Meath, Monaghan, Louth and Westmeath are all on four and separated only by points difference.

Division 3

Promotion: Mercifully, matters are a lot more straightforward at the top of Division 3. Longford and Wexford are both guaranteed promotion, regardless of the result when they meet on 8 April in what will amount to a dress rehearsal of the Divison 3 final.

Relegation: With five defeats and a draw from their six games so far, Tipperary will be playing Division 4 football next season. They will be joined there by Offaly, unless the Faithful can beat Tipp on the final weekend and Cavan lose to Antrim.

Division 4

Promotion: There are still three rounds of games to play in Division 4, but with 10 points each, Fermanagh and Clare are odds-on favourites to finish in the top two and secure promotion.

Round-up: Allianz Football League, Division 1

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About the author:

Niall Kelly

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