Difficult road ahead in qualifiers for Armagh

FOLLOWING their defeat against Tyrone on Sunday, Armagh will join some big name sides when they line out in the All-Ireland qualifiers at the end of June.

Paddy O’Rourke’s side could face the losers from the Ulster first round clash between Derry and Donegal or the defeated team from the clash of Offaly against Kildare. They could even meet Wicklow, a side who almost knocked them out last season under the management of former Kerry boss Mick O’Dwyer. Also in the draw for the qualifiers are Ulster sides Antrim , Fermanagh and Cavan.

Other Leinster counties who will be placed in the hat are Laois, Westmeath, Longford, Louth and Meath or Carlow who meet in their provincial tie. London, Roscommon, Waterford and Tipperary will also all be hoping for kind draws in the qualifiers.

Whilst there would appear to be very few easy games for any of the ‘back door’ sides, Armagh would be keen to avoid in paticular, Laois, Roscommon or the losers of the Derry against Donegal game. Paddy O’Rourke’s team will, at least for now, avoid playing Kerry who will be in a later round considering they were beaten Munster semi finalists.

If Armagh get through their opening qualifier, the games will then come thick and fast in the build up to the All-Ireland quarter finals when the competition takes on a sudden death formation.