Sunday 14 May – Clones – 4pm
15 years is a long wait, but that decade and a half delay for an Ulster final appearance comes to an end on Sunday.
Armagh are back involved in the big day in Clones, and it’s sure to be a special occasion for anyone lucky enough to get a hold of a ticket.
And while the fans will look forward to the day out, a throwback to the noughties, the players will have their sights on the Anglo Celt.
Of the current playing squad, none of them have ever played in an Ulster final, never mind won one.
Defensive coach Ciaran McKeever is the only link between the current squad and the 2008 panel.
So, it’s been a long time coming but for Armagh, they have to make it count on Sunday against the reigning champions.
Derry know a thing or two about barren years. Last year, Chrissy McKaigue was the first Derry man to get his hands on the Anglo Celt in 24-years.
If anything, Rory Gallagher’s side are probably better now than they were 12-months ago. They’re added another attacking flair to their arsenal.
Derry can literally attack, and score, from anywhere. All 15 players, including goalkeeper Odhran Lynch, are comfortable in front of the posts.
Armagh will be wary of their threats, especially Shane McGuigan who has posted 2-14 in their last two outings.
But Armagh have enough attacking quality to cause Derry headaches. A Derry defence that has leaked eight goals in their last three games.
Conor Turbitt was held scoreless the last day but had been on fire in the rounds before the Down game.
Rory Grugan, Rian O’Neill and Andrew Murnin all have an eye for a score, and with Murnin on the square, Derry will be wary of his goal threat.
The bench played a big role for Armagh the last day as well. Aidan Nugent, Stefan Campbell and Callum Cumiskey all scored after being introduced.
The wait has felt like an eternity, but it’s finally over and Armagh will want to make in count in Clones.
It should be an outstanding affair, and if Armagh play to their potential, they can bring the Anglo Celt back to the Orchard County.