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Derry primed for ‘acid test’ in Croke Park league decider

Derry's Aidan McAlynn (right) will start against Dublin in the National League final

Derry's Aidan McAlynn (right) will start against Dublin in the National League final

Derry boss Brian McIver has made one change to the side that overcame Mayo for Sunday’s Allianz NFL Division 1 final against holders Dublin at Croke Park.

Aidan McAlynn is handed a starting berth at left half back.

The Loup clubman is the replacement for Sean Leo McGoldrick who misses out due to a knee injury sustained while on club duty with Coleraine.

The sides have already met in the League this year, and it was Derry who recorded an eye-catching 1-16 to 0-13 victory in Celtic Park, a result that made many doubters stand up and take notice of McIver’s side, who beat Westmeath in the Division II final 12 months ago.

Mark Lynch, the Derry captain and one of the stand-out players of the year so far, hit 1-8 in the game.

Chrissy McKaigue, man of the match in the Mayo game, says playing Dublin in Croke Park will be another huge test of their credentials ahead of their Ulster Championship opener against Donegal on May 25.

“There were people tipping us for relegation and so on but we knew we were quite strong at home and that was definitely one of our strengths,” said McKaigue.

“We’re still a team developing very much but we have shown that we can compete with most teams and Dublin will be the acid test now.”

Fixtures

Today

Allianz FL Division 3 final

Cavan v Roscommon

Tomorrow

Allianz FL Division 1 final

Dublin v Derry

Allianz FL Division 2 final

Donegal v Monaghan

 

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