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Former An Ghaeltacht and Kerry footballer Marc Ó Sé at the launch of ‘The Toughest Season’, a picture book to be published in collaboration with the GAA's official photographers, Sportsfile documenting this season unlike any other.
Former An Ghaeltacht and Kerry footballer Marc Ó Sé at the launch of ‘The Toughest Season’, a picture book to be published in collaboration with the GAA's official photographers, Sportsfile documenting this season unlike any other.

Ó Sé expects Kerry to receive stern test Leeside


By Cian O'Connell

On Sunday November 8 at Pairc Ui Chaoimh the next chapter in the Cork and Kerry Munster Senior Football Championship rivalry will be written and Marc Ó Sé is relishing the prospect.

The Allianz Football League recommences in just over a fortnight's time with Ó Sé encouraged about the return of inter-county action.

Ó Sé is adamant that the knockout element to the 2020 competition will add another layer of intrigue and the former Kerry star is looking forward to the clash.

"Believe it, I am," Ó Sé says. "As we know it has been a year like no other, which we all understand. I think that whilst there is no perfect ideal solution as to what way the Championship should be played, I think the last year we saw it was 2000 when it was just complete knockout. 

"That said you won't have supporters there this year, but there is something very interesting, something that gets the blood flowing about straight knockout. And this year, I think that’s going to be the case."

Ó Sé expects that Kerry will receive a stern examination down by the banks of the Lee.

"Take from our point of view, Kerry – and I was only saying this earlier, I was accused of being a cute hoor when I mentioned this – that Kerry have to go down to Páirc Uí Chaoimh, playing up Cork and playing down Kerry," Ó Sé laughs.

David Clifford, Kerry, and Kevin Flahive, Cork, in action during the 2019 Munster SFC Final.
David Clifford, Kerry, and Kevin Flahive, Cork, in action during the 2019 Munster SFC Final.

"But if you think about it, Cork are sitting pretty at the top of Division Three from the start of the year. I would still expect Kerry to go down and beat them. 

"That said, it’s going to be a huge task to go down to Páirc Uí Chaoimh, take on a team below there that are going really well. When you know that it’s knockout, when you know that this could be the last throw of the dice, there’s a huge challenge. 

"That’s going to be a massive game. It’s going to draw huge attention. 

"I know there’s going to be very few going to the games or whatever, that’s going to draw massive attention. It’s something that’s going to whet the appetite. I can’t wait for it."

Ó Sé admits that Kerry will be wary considering the fact that it it is a winner takes all battle. "Yeah, this is it, I would," Ó Sé remarks. "Coupled to that, the way they started the year, they were sitting pretty on top of the table with 10 points. That’s fantastic. I suppose there was a huge emphasis as well on the top tier, needing to get into Division Two. 

"They’re definitely improving. There’s no doubt about that. Underage football is very good in Cork. My brother Tomás tells me that. His team Glanmire are playing tonight in the county minor final, taking on Douglas. 

"He’s very taken with the underage structures and the underage football in Cork, and the talent that’s down there. So Cork are going to be there or thereabouts."