Dublin to begin Leinster title defence on the road

The All-Ireland champions will face  either Wicklow or Wexford in the provincial quarter-finals.
Dublin to begin Leinster title defence on the road

Dublin captain Stephen Cluxton lifts the Sam Maguire Cup last December. His side aim for a 11th consecutive Delaney Cup this summer

All-Ireland SFC champions Dublin will begin their Leinster campaign against Wicklow or Wexford in early July.

As they aim for a 11th consecutive Delaney Cup, their first opponents will either be Division 3 or 4 opposition, although the game will not be played in Croke Park and the semi-finals are expected to be played outside GAA HQ too.

Mickey Harte’s first Championship game in charge of Louth sees him pit wits against John Maughan's Offaly. The winners will face Jack O’Connor’s Kildare in the quarter-finals.

In a competition that has lost almost all of its lustre, the pick of the games is the Laois-Westmeath quarter-final given both teams are Division 2 sides, while 2020 runners-up Meath await the victors of the Carlow-Longford preliminary round game.

The Leinster SFC is due to commence on the weekend of June 26/27 and the final is scheduled for Sunday, August 1 - the same day as the Ulster final.

As last year’s semi-finalists, Dublin, Kildare, Laois and Meath received byes into the quarter-finals. The semi-final draws will take place after the quarter-finals.

There are strong suggestions the Leinster SFC will change next season. It could be pushed into spring to replace the league which would switch to the summer and form the Championship or slimmed into an eight-team competition split into groups of four with the other three counties moving into Connacht and Munster conferences.

Should either of those two proposals fail to receive sufficient support at Special Congress, provincial councils could be empowered to alter their championship structure, which may allow Leinster to provide weaker counties with extra games before facing stronger opposition.

Leinster SFC draw.

Preliminary Round.

Offaly v Louth.

Wicklow v Wexford.

Carlow v Longford.

Quarter-finals.

Kildare v Offaly/Louth.

Dublin v Wicklow/Wexford.

Laois v Westmeath.

Meath v Carlow/Longford.

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