By Caoimhín Doherty
Danielle Farrell and her GAA Liverpool club John Mitchels Ladies have eyes on a final as they take on London’s Holloway Gaels in the All-Britain Intermediate Semi-Final.
The throw-in for the game is at 2pm this Saturday November 6 in Pairc nah Eireann, in Birmingham.
Intermediate level is the highest club level in Britain in the Gaelic Athletic Association.
And supporters of the Merseyside team are expected to travel in numbers.
For those who can’t make it the game will be shown Live on the John Mitchels Facebook page.
The Northern Championship consists of four other teams: Edinburgh’s Dunedin Connollys, Glasgow Gaels, and Oisín GLC from Manchester as well as Roger Casement’s from Coventry.
Winning the Northern Championship means that John Mitchels Ladies automatically progress to the All-Britain Semi-Final.
Mitchels’ Danielle Farrell was part of the squad who won the club’s only other All-Britain Intermediate, four years ago.
The 30-year-old still looks back to that day with fond memories.
Speaking to Merseysportlive, she said: “We beat Dunedin Connolly’s in 2017 to win it.
“I think we’ve met them three times on that stage, but we were always losing. Thankfully we were able to get the better of them that time.
“It was a fantastic achievement for the club. Winning meant we moved to the Quarter-Final of the All-Ireland Club Championship.
“We got to host the game here in Liverpool, but unfortunately we came up short on the day.”
Mitchels’ number 13 said the girls are focusing on ensuring they are in the best possible shape for Saturday.
“We are taking a different approach for this game. We have a number of resources within the team that we can pull from.
“There is a couple of physios on the panel who are always there to help with things like little niggling injuries.
“Another teammate is a nutritionist, so the coaches have been asking her to give some advice into the group chat over the last few weeks.”
Farrell, who has been a player for the Greenbank-based club since 2013, says Mitchels are taking things game by game.
“Obviously we can’t get ahead of ourselves, we must focus on the semi-final first,” she said.
“But having such a strong squad, in quality and in numbers, it would be below us not to reach the final.
“We should definitely be there.”
The corner-forward added: “I would back us to go further than the final.
“I see us going to the Quarter-Final in Ireland and progressing and, if not, having left everything we have on the pitch.”
It is to be a tough test for both sides and is yet another fixture, involving a Merseyside club that divides a family.
Mitchels’ Roisin Flanagan will be up against her twin sister, Ciara, who plays for Holloway Gaels.
All-Britain Semi-Final v Holloway Gaels on Saturday 6th November will be shown live on our Facebook page. pic.twitter.com/ckhJMeG3A2
— John Mitchels GAA Liverpool (@JohnMitchelsGAA) October 27, 2021
Coach Conor Milligan said he is looking forward to the game.
“Obviously, this is a big occasion for the team.
“Our first game was at the end of April against Liverpool Wolfe Tones, so it’s been a long season.
“Six months down the line to say we are Northern Champions and in the All-Britain Semi-Final, is quite the achievement.”
Milligan also added how important the girls’ potential run of games is.
“The girls have to realise that they are five games away from an All-Ireland Final.
“So because of that, nothing changes. We must take it one game at a time.
“There is a great bunch of girls here. We have a number of experienced players in the team who won the All-Britain back in 2017.
“We don’t know much about Holloway, but I know if we perform as a team on the day, there’s no doubt we’ll get over the line.”