Donegal to face Tyrone in Ulster championship

Recently-crowned All-Ireland SFC champions Donegal have a tough route if they are to retain their Ulster crown in 2013, having been paired with Tyrone at the quarter-final stage.

Donegal to face Tyrone in Ulster championship

Recently-crowned All-Ireland SFC champions Donegal have a tough route if they are to retain their Ulster crown in 2013, having been paired with Tyrone at the quarter-final stage.

Jim McGuinness' charges beat Tyrone 0-12 to 0-10 in a tight semi-final in this year's Ulster Championship, but the Red Hands will be all out for revenge next summer as they bid to derail Donegal's tilt at a provincial three in-a-row.

With two Anglo-Celt Cups and an All-Ireland success in McGuinness' first two years in charge, Donegal are certainly marked men now.

If they pass the Tyrone test they will come up against either Derry or Down, whom they both defeated this past summer en route to Ulster Championship glory.

New Armagh boss Paul Grimley will plot the downfall of Cavan in the preliminary round of the 2013 Ulster Championship, with the winners playing Fermanagh in the next round.

The other Ulster quarter-final tie will see a currently manager-less Antrim team battling it out with Monaghan, who recently installed Malachy O'Rourke as their new supremo.

In the Munster Championship, Kerry and Tipperary will meet for the fourth year in succession.

The counties clashed back in May with Bryan Sheehan's six-point haul helping Kerry to a 0-16 to 0-10 victory. But Tipp have been getting closer, the previous years saw them losing by 12 and 11-point margins.

Next summer's duel will mark Eamonn Fitzmaurice's Championship bow as Kerry manager, and defending champions Cork are in the other half of the draw - paving the way for another possible final between the great rivals.

Limerick hope to have something to say about that, facing the Rebels in the other quarter-final. The winners of that game will take on Clare, who lost this year's final to Cork by 3-16 to 0-13.

Meanwhile, in Connacht, 2012 beaten All-Ireland finalists Mayo will open next year's campaign with a mouth-watering showdown with Galway.

Mayo and Galway have won 44 Connacht SFC titles each, with Mayo gunning for their first three in-a-row of Nestor Cups since 1951.

In Alan Mulholland's first season, Galway's challenge for provincial honours fell flat during a semi-final defeat to Sligo and the Tribesmen will have to redouble their efforts in search of theirr first Nestor Cup since 2008.

Sligo, who were last winners in 2007, will be quietly confident of reaching the decider for the third time in four seasons. They look set to face Leitrim in the semi-finals, after the counties' respective quarter-final trips to London and New York.

Finally, Westmeath or Carlow will provide the opposition for Leinster title holders when they taste Championship action for the first time under new boss Jim Gavin.

If Gavin's men prevail in their provincial opener, they will play either Offaly or Kieran McGeeney's Kildare side in the last-four.

Meath, who are poised to appoint Mick O'Dowd as their new manager, were the Leinster runners-up in 2012 and will open next year's Championship with a quarter-final against either Wicklow or Longford.

If the Royals progress to the last-four, Laois, Louth or Wexford will be standing in their way. The latter two counties have yet to select new managers following the respective departures of Peter Fitzpatrick and Jason Ryan.

2013 MUNSTER SENIOR FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP DRAW -

Quarter-Finals: Limerick v Cork, Kerry v Tipperary

Semi-Finals: Clare v Limerick/Cork, Waterford v Kerry/Tipperary

2013 CONNACHT SENIOR FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP DRAW -

Quarter-Finals: New York v Leitrim, London v Sligo, Galway v Mayo

Semi-Finals: Galway/Mayo v Roscommon, New York/Leitrim v London/Sligo

2013 ULSTER SENIOR FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP DRAW -

Preliminary Round: Cavan v Armagh

Quarter-Finals: Donegal v Tyrone, Derry v Down, Antrim v Monaghan, Cavan/Armagh v Fermanagh

Semi-Finals: Donegal/Tyrone v Derry/Down, Antrim/Monaghan v Cavan/Armagh/Fermanagh

2013 LEINSTER SENIOR FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP DRAW -

First Round: Wicklow v Longford, Laois v Louth, Westmeath v Carlow

Quarter-Finals: Wicklow/Longford v Meath, Laois/Louth v Wexford, Westmeath/Carlow v Dublin, Offaly v Kildare

Semi-Finals: Wicklow/Longford/Meath v Laois/Louth/Wexford, Westmeath/Carlow/Dublin v Offaly/Kildare

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