Kerry, Galway and Derry teams named for All-Ireland SFC semi-final games

Jack O’Connor has opted for an unchanged Kerry team as he seeks to end 13 years of championship torment at the hands of Dublin.

However, the return of Jack Barry and Adrian Spillane to Kerry’s match-day 26 will fuel speculation that there could yet be an 11th hour change for Sunday’s All-Ireland SFC semi-final showdown.

The duo were both injury absentees for the Kingdom’s fitful quarter-final win over Mayo, Barry having previously started both outings in Munster whereas Spillane started against Cork and then came off the bench against Limerick.

Now they return to the bench, to the exclusion of Darragh Roche and Stefan Okunbor. However, depending on his state of fitness, the prospect of a late call-up for Barry cannot be ruled out given his previous success in stifling the influence of Brian Fenton.

As expected, David Clifford is listed in his customary No 14 position despite the ankle injury he shipped during the first half against Mayo. Kerry’s marquee forward shook off that setback to score a brilliant goal and duly finished the quarter-final.

Kerry, marginal 4/5 favourites with the bookies, are aiming to end their worst ever championship run against the Dubs.

O’Connor was manager when they annihilated Pat Gilroy’s “startled earwigs” in a 2009 quarter-final landslide but, since then, Dublin have prevailed in the 2011 All-Ireland final, 2013 semi-final, 2015 decider, 2016 semi-final and then, at the second attempt, in the 2019 final replay.

Dessie Farrell has yet to name his Dublin team, which usually comes out around Saturday lunchtime, with all eyes on the match-day 26 to see if he includes skipper James McCarthy and Con O’Callaghan, who both sat out the quarter-final win over Cork through injury.

Pádraic Joyce has kept faith with the 15 Galway starters who survived that titanic penalty shootout victory over Armagh for Saturday’s All-Ireland SFC semi-final against Derry.

That means first choice ‘keeper Conor Gleeson is given a chance to atone for the errors that contributed to Armagh’s three goals the last day.

Meanwhile, skipper Seán Kelly resumes at No 3 after his red card arising from that controversial melee at the end of normal-time was rescinded.

There are two changes in the Galway subs, Johnny McGrath coming in for the suspended Cathal Sweeney while Dylan Canney displaces Tomo Culhane.

Meanwhile, Derry boss Rory Gallagher has recalled the long-serving Emmett Bradley for the clash with Galway in Croke Park.

Bradley has been used primarily as an impact replacement this summer – he was first sub in during their quarter-final demolition of Clare – but the Glen clubman has now been listed to start alongside Conor Glass in the Oak Leaf engine-room.

The player losing out is Niall Toner, who drops to the bench – although this selection comes with a caveat as Bradley was also named at No 9 against the Banner only for Toner to be parachuted in before throw-in.

Nigel Harte has been restored to the Westmeath defence for Saturday’s inaugural Tailteann Cup decider against Cavan in Croke Park.

The Tyrrellspass clubman had been named in the match programme team to face Offaly, only for Sam Duncan to be parachuted in from the start. On that occasion Harte appeared as a late sub, and now he’s been named once more at No 7, at the expense of Duncan.

Galway (SFC v Derry): C Gleeson; L Silke, S Kelly, J Glynn; D McHugh, J Daly, K Molloy; P Conroy, C McDaid; Patrick Kelly, M Tierney, J Heaney; R Finnerty, D Comer, S Walsh. Subs: J Keane, J Foley, B Mannion, J McGrath, N Daly, Paul Kelly, O Gallagher, F Ó Laoí, E Finnerty, D Conneely, D Canney.

Derry (SFC v Galway): O Lynch; C McKaigue, B Rogers, C McCluskey; C Doherty, G McKinless, P McGrogan; C Glass, E Bradley; Paul Cassidy, S Downey, E Doherty; B Heron, S McGuigan, N Loughlin. Subs: C Bradley, P McNeill, Padraig Cassidy, B McCarron, A Tohill, L Murray, N Toner, D Cassidy, M Doherty, M Downey, O McWilliams.

Westmeath (SFC v Cavan): J Daly; J Smith, K Maguire, J Gonoud; J Dolan, R Wallace, N Harte; J Lynam, R Connellan; S McCartan, R O’Toole, D Lynch; L Loughlin, J Heslin, L Dolan.

Kerry (SFC v Dublin): S Ryan; G O’Sullivan, J Foley, T O’Sullivan; B Ó Beaglaoíoch, T Morley, G White; D Moran, D O’Connor; D Moynihan, S O’Shea, S O’Brien; P Clifford, D Clifford, P Geaney. Subs: S Murphy, T Brosnan, K Spillane, P Murphy, M Burns, J O’Connor, J Savage, G Crowley, J O’Shea, J Barry, A Spillane.