Division One vs Division Four. Home advantage. The ‘easy’ side of the draw. Everything points to an Armagh victory this weekend.
Antrim have jumped to Division Three with four straight wins, while Armagh retained their status among the best teams in the country.
The players will take a difference mindset into the weekend, of course. Complacency is dangerous in all sports and Armagh can’t take their eye off the ball.
Jim McCorry knows better than most what will be said inside the Armagh changing room this week.
“It really won’t be in the psyche at all. Kieran McGeeney won’t let that filter at all into it.
You’re always hearing coaches in all sports talking about the next game. The one game. Taking it one game at a time. We’ve heard that, that’s an item with coaches”.
“That’ll be drilled into Armagh, and it’ll be drilled in probably with Kieran and the rest of the management team, but also that leaders group.
There’s a really strong leaders group there that’ll just focus the guys on the one game when they’re on the field. How the play, what they’re set up to do”.
The former Armagh assistant manager has been impressed with the Saffron County in the league. And suggests Armagh would be foolish to look too far ahead.
“They’ll not think about who they’re going to get in the next round, will it be Monaghan? Will there be an Ulster final this year?
To do so, would really be very, very dangerous. We know they (Antrim) can score. I know they had a leaky defence with seven goals scored against them in their league campaign”.
“We know they can score; they can get goals. We know (Paddy) Cunningham can come on late, (Tomas) McCann can come on late and win games for them.
On paper, in the bookies, in all the chat, it’s all Armagh. But Antrim this year, the one thing that’s impressed me about it, they’ve a new management coming in”.
Enda McGinley has been leading the charge from the sideline with his old teammate Stephen O’Neill there for assistance.
“Stephen O’Neill in there as well for a forwards coach. Who had an exceptional reputation when he was with Tyrone, as a player he was exceptional as well.
We know they can open up defences. There were problems in Armagh’s defence because of injury, I think they really got it right against Roscommon”.
“I thought the team defence was superb. They worked for each other so they’re going to have to be like that.
The guys will be thinking about this game. How do we break down a blanket defence, how do we get scores, how do we stop them hitting us on the breaks?
I certainly don’t think Armagh’s thinking any more than this weekend”.