Dublin and Meath square up in Croke Park

Old enemies and bitter rivals Dublin and Meath shape up in the Leinster SFC quarter-final at Croke Park today, with the fans hoping for another epic to restore faith in both counties.

Old enemies and bitter rivals Dublin and Meath shape up in the Leinster SFC quarter-final at Croke Park today, with the fans hoping for another epic to restore faith in both counties.

Dublin impressed in their opening round victory over Longford, but Meath will represent a different challenge for Paul Caffrey’s men.

The Royals will be looking for a win to get over the heartbreak of their losing the Division Two league final last month, when an own goal handed the title to Monaghan in the dying seconds.

Sean Boylan, the longest-serving inter-county manager in the country, is trying to rebuild his squad and has opted for a combination of youth and experience for today’s encounter.

Veterans Mark O'Reilly and Nigel Crawford return, while five debutants are set for their introduction to championship action.

O'Reilly returns at right corner-back, with Crawford at midfield.

In defence, full-back Kevin O'Reilly and left half-back Cathal King are the newcomers, while new boys in attack include centre-forward Paddy Byrne, left half-forward Stephen Brae and left corner-forward Brian Farrell.

Darren Fay lines out at centre-back and Graham Geraghty moves from leader of the attack to full-forward. Former AllStar and Player of the Year Trevor Giles is ruled out through injury.

Dublin boss Paul Caffrey has kept faith with the side that defeated Longford in the first round.

Shane Ryan has recovered from the hamstring injury he picked up while playing for his club last weekend and resumes his midfield partnership with Ciarán Whelan.

U21 star Declan O'Mahony, who was sprung from the bench during the victory over Longford, has been ruled out with a shoulder injury.

The Dubs are dark horses for Leinster this year, while Meath are in a state of transition, so the Metropolitans should advance to the semi-final.

DUBLIN (SFC v Meath): S Cluxton; P Griffin, P Christie, S O'Shaughnessy; P Casey, B Cahill, C Goggins; C Whelan, S Ryan; C Moran, A Brogan, B Cullen; J Sherlock, C Keaney, T Quinn.

MEATH (SFC v Dublin): D Gallagher; M O'Reilly, K O'Reilly, N McKeigue; D Crimmons, D Fay, C King; N Crawford, A Moyles; N Kelly, P Byrne, S Brae; J Sheridan, G Geraghty, B Farrell.

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