ARMAGH manager Paddy O’Rourke faces a dilemma as they prepared to play Kerry this Saturday night.
After an inept first half display last Sunday against Cork wholesale changes at the break helped improve the performance.
Clan na Gael’s Stephan Campbell, Caolan Rafferty and Maghery’s Aidan Forker all contributed to securing a share of the spoils but will the team boss wield the axe or give the players who started against the Leesiders a second chance?
Tir na nOg’s Brian Mallon, who shot the equalising score against the Rebels, would bring a lot of experience to the Armagh attack in Kerry. He looked focused and hungry against Cork and could command a starting place on Saturday.
Kerry’s comfortable victory over Dublin at Croke Park last weekend was secured by a sterling second half performance which could underline the Kingdom’s advanced fitness levels at this time of year.
This weekend however they will be without Owen Brosnan and Colm Cooper who, like their Crossmaglen counterparts are currently preparing for the All-Ireland Club semi-final next Saturday week.
The Kingdom line out against the Dubs possessed a lot of pace, particularly in defence where both Mark and Thomas O se stood out.
Kieran Donaghy and Billy Joe Keane are a potent strike force up front for the Munster side.
Armagh’s midfield sector will need to be on its toes to counteract the promptings of Seamus Scanlon and Bryan Sheehan who had a blinder against Dublin.
Kerry hit 1-14 yet missed the target 15 times last time out which underlines the ammount of chances they had at Croke Park.
Last season they had a comfortable win against Armagh at the Athletic Grounds, helped by a Darren O’Sullivan goal who also found the net last weekend.
This Saturday’s game will be the toughest of the league campaign and although Armagh’s defence is definitely their strongest sector a huge performance will be necessary to run the Kingdom close.
It willtake all the determination shown last Sunday during the closing stages, plus a big tally on the scoreboard, to register any points.