March 26th, 2019

Irish Cup Semi Finals

This Saturday will tell us who will compete in the Irish Cup Final Showpiece. There’s little doubt that the favourites will come from the Semi-Final between Crusaders and Coleraine. Warrenpoint and Ballinamallard are in the other Semi Final on merit though deserve not to be taken lightly. Toalsbet are proud betting partner of the Irish Cup and this article will give you a bit of insight into the Weekend matches.

Ballinamallard Utd v Warrenpoint Tn – Saturday 3pm

The Mallards had an awful start to the Championship this season. An opening day win wasn’t followed with another until November. Since then they had a long unbeaten run, were the first side to beat Larne (Championship Winners) and qualified for the Semi-final of the Irish Cup. They got past PSNI, Carrick and Dungannon to get to this stage. Ballinamallard will again rely on the evergreen Ryan Campbell for their goals. He’s their only player in double figures. They have an experienced and hard working midfield. Incorporating the likes of R Clarke, C Kelly and J McCartney. Stopper J Connolly can expect a busy time of it against the Point.

Dungannon

Warrenpoint Town are currently 10th in the 12 team Irish Premiership. Some of their recent performances have made others in the league take a bit more notice of them. At the weekend they deservedly beat high-flying Ballymena Utd. They scared champions Crusaders for a long time in their recent fixture and beat rivals Ards. The Point have had to beat Larne Tech OB, Queens and Institute to get to this stage. Humblings at the hand of Belfasts Big Two Linfield and Glentoran show that they are capable of a bad display as well as the recent good ones. Phillip Donnelly and Simon Kelly will have crucial roles to play in the middle of the park. Alan O’Sullivan could well be the man to fire the Point in to the final!

Coleraine v Crusaders – Saturday 5.30pm

Coleraine are 6th in the 12 team Irish Premiership. They haven’t quite lived up to pre-season expectations. Coleraine have got here by beating Larne in the televised Quarter Final in a classic. Looking dead and buried they scraped through after extra time. Also beating Dergview and H&W Welders in previous rounds. They have shown glimpses of Last Seasons Coleraine. No Irish League team would be able to lose the quality of Ciaron Harkin, Brad Lyons, Stephen Dooley and Darren McCauley without it showing. McGonigle, Shiels, Bradley and J Carson still provide a threat capable of upsetting the best of defences. The current Cup holders, Coleraine could be the team to beat this year again.

Colin Coates of Crusaders wheels away in celebration.

Crusaders, Irish Premiership champions (for a few games) and possibly they have the best squad in the Irish League. They have also had an up and down season. they have undoubtedly had the toughest run to this stage. Getting past Glentoran, Linfield and Ballymena. Their Irish Cup record is not as good as it maybe should be though. They are capable of the sublime, see victories over Linfield, Ballymena and Coleraine recently. The ridiculous includes losses to Dungannon, Linfield , Ballymena and a draw against Ards. The issue with these games were the performances. Ballymena put three past them and Ards went 2 goals up. The squad at Stephen Baxters disposal is immense. Losing Heatley to injury has opened up chances for Cushley and the Hales. Jordan Forsythe has made himself pretty indispensable this season, with the joint most perfomances. In their draw against Ards, D Cushley coming on after halftime turned the game for the Cru’s.

Best of Luck to all the teams involved!

It maybe worth noting the Coleraine have had slightly the better of the meetings between these two rivals this season. Winning two but losing one of the three games. Another point worth noting McGonigle has scored three times against Crusaders on these games. McGonigle was a Crusaders transfer target earlier on in the year.

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