Aviva FAI Junior Cup Semi-Final: Boyle Celtic v Evergreen FC (Kilkenny) on Sunday at The Showgrounds Sligo at 3 pm
Boyle Celtic can make history on Sunday when they face Evergreen of Kilkenny in the last four of the FAI Junior Cup in Sligo. The fact that Boyle went to Carrick-on-Suir and beat the fancied home side in the quarter-finals will give the players huge confidence that they can be the first ever side from the county to play in the blue riband game of Irish junior soccer at the Aviva Stadium later in April.
Boyle have had a dream run in this competition and after a great win in the quarter-final against the strong pre match favourites Carrick United there is a real buzz about this semi-final. Boyle thoroughly deserved to beat Carrick in that quarter-final and with a huge crowd behind them they will be confident that they can get to the final.
Kyle Suffin will be hoping to produce more heroics in goal after saving the penalty that put them through to this stage of the competition.
Boyle’s real strength will be in defence where Seanie Purcell and John Connolly will be hoping to stop the Evergreen danger men with Dessie Carlos and Gerard McDermottroe the very competent full-backs. In midfield, captain Lochlainn Conboy will be hoping that he can shake off his injury to take his place. Shane Battles, Niall Brennan, Danny Browne, Luka Roddy and two-goal hero from the quarter-final, Mick Corrigan, will be hoping to inflict damage on the Kilkenny men.
Evergreen are also surprise packets at this stage of the competition. Their biggest name is Mickey Drennan who is a former Aston Villa striker and they have a few ex-League of Ireland players. Other players that Boyle will be watching out for are Sean Barcoe, Dylan Whearty and Niall Andrews.
Boyle will enjoy a massive edge in support with a huge crowd expected at the match and that could be their secret weapon. Evergreen travel as the slight favourites to win but that will not affect Boyle who were also second favourites against Carrick United and they dealt with that situation in very impressive fashion.
In a one-off situation Boyle are well capable of winning this game and making history by getting to the final of this prestigious competition that starts with 800 teams every year. The Showgrounds will be rocking on Sunday.
Prediction: Boyle Celtic