The last of the four All Ireland semi-final Sundays takes place this weekend, with Dublin meeting Mayo in a classic “Town vs Country” battle. The day’s action in Croke Park gets underway with the meeting of Dublin and Kerry in the minor championship, and rarely if ever was a Dublin team so strongly fancied to beat the Kingdom in a football championship fixture.
Dublin vs Kerry (minor)
Looking at the results that both counties have achieved so far this year, it’s easy to see why Dublin are so strongly tipped for this one. They were very good throughout their Leinster campaign and the Meath team they beat by twelve points in the Leinster decider has gone on to reach the All Ireland Final through the other half of the draw. Kerry, on the other hand, were well beaten by Tipperary in the Munster championship on two separate occasions and they limped over the line against a very ordinary Roscommon team in the All Ireland series. There are good individuals in this Kerry side, but they could and should struggle to match the power and pace of their Dublin counterparts.
Minor teams are rarely if ever a good bet at long odds on, however if the form does hold up, Dublin should be well capable of covering the spread, as they’ve done in all five games they’ve played so far this year.
Dublin vs Mayo (senior)
Dublin have the mental strength and the confidence that comes from winning an All Ireland and while they will welcome back a talismanic forward in the shape of Alan Brogan, Mayo will have to work without their leader and full forward Andy Moran for the first time this year. That said, it’s impossible to trust Dublin to deliver at the current odds on prices, since they simply aren’t playing well at the moment.
That Dublin are still in the championship at this stage owes a lot to their very frugal full back line, which has only conceded two goals in four games in the championship, consistent with their record of four goals conceded in seven league games. Mayo, for their part, have conceded seven goals in twelve league and championship games this year. With Moran out and Bernard Brogan off form, neither side is a great bet to hit the net at any stage. No goalscorer is 6/1 with Ladbrokes, but we’d prefer to take the 5/1 from Boylesports, who are offering money back on all losing goalscorer bets if the game ends up in a draw.
Dublin vs Kerry: Dublin -6pts @ evens, 2pt stake
Dublin vs Mayo: No Goalscorer @ 5/1, 1pt stake
Profit/Loss to date: +7.18 points (tracking started from Saturday Aug 4th 2012; 14.5 points staked, 49.5% ROI)