Meath’s clash with Longford in the Leinster SFC at Pairc Tailteann next Sunday does not represent a banana skin.
It does in fact represent a whole box full of Fyffe’s discarded peel.
The two sides couldn’t be approaching this from more different angles if they deliberately tried to do so.
The midlanders are coming in on the back of scoring 25 points when beating Carlow, and yes they would have been expected to win that game but at the same time 25 points takes some kicking.
Andy McEntee’s side on the other hand are entering the campaign after a spiritless loss to Kildare in a match where promotion back to division one of the league was at stake, although judging by the green and golds performance for most of the game you wouldn’t know that.
Perhaps the nest way to sum up that match was to say Kildare were the Lily Whites and Meath were lily livered.
Remember too it is just three years ago that Longford overcame Meath in the championship and the warning signs are there.
Meath too are beset with injuries and suspensions, which were the root cause of the dispute between McEntee and Bernard Flynn that saw the latter exit the under 20s manager role.
Donal Keogan, arguably Meath’s standout player in recent seasons, looks likely to miss out with an injured shoulder, Conor McGill and Cormac Costello are suspended, so the omens don’t look great.
Conversely the row that saw Flynn depart, could have an ‘us against the world’ unifying effect on the senior squad.
Indiscipline has been a reasonably constant theme of McEntee’s time in charge, pictures of the manager berating match officials are all too common viewing for Meath fans after games and may show where that particular problem begins.
Overall McEntee has certainly progressed the team in his time in charge even if he has ablind spot as regards the goalkeeping role, but that progression is in danger of stalling.
A defeat to Longford would probably see the whole ship sink and while Nelson does not want that to happen he accepts that these days it would just be a mild surprise and not a seismic shock.
As the mens team struggle the ladies seem to go from strength to strength and Eamonn Murrays side can now add the division two league title to a stream of other accolades.
The step up will take some adjusting to but nothing the Royalettes do would surprise us, there is enough talent in the squad to retain top flight status and see where it all ends up come championship of 2022.
Monday June 28th was a day and a half in the Euros.
Fourteen goals in two matches and the World champions sent crashing out.
Nelson suggested to a Manchester United supporting mate, yes believe it or not United fans do have some friends, that there should be a new chant at Old Trafford next season, ‘Two Paul Pogba’s there’s only two Paul Pogba’s’ only to be told bluntly, ‘I hope there is NO Paul Pogba at United then’,
It is unusual to have two games of the excitement that was generated by Spain v Croatia and France v Switzerland in one tournament never mind back to back.
Nelson’s money is on Belgium to win it but it is increasingly looking like Kasper the friendly goalie and his Danish side are a team on a mission.
They want to win it for Christian Eriksen and they are certainly well equipped to do so.
On hearing that Ireland’s Rugby Sevens side has qualified for the Olympics Nelson’s first thought was ‘Good now we only need another eight decent players for a shot at the Triple Crown’.
More seriously now that McIlroy and Lowry are having a cut at the golf and we have a few more boxers qualified the nation, while not quite holding its breath like we allegedly did in 1990 when O’Leary took that penalty, may have a longer than normal interest in the goings on in Tokyo.
And historically Japan has been kind to Irish sports people.
There was that Robbie Keane goal against the Germans and some years previosuly Wayne McCullough won the world bantamweight title there.
Nelson has a feeling there could be some gold in them there Tokyo hills.