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Jim McGuinness Identifies Key Area Where Teams Can Get At Kerry

Jim McGuinness Identifies Key Area Where Teams Can Get At Kerry
By Gary Connaughton

Despite being among the only teams yet to kick a ball in this year's championship, Kerry will get their campaign underway this weekend as the favourites to life the Sam Maguire this summer.

Jack O'Connor's men put in some hugely impressive performances in the league during the spring, ultimately winning the Division 1 title after a comfortable victory over Mayo at Croke Park.

Considering the questionable performances of some other counties in their provincial openers, Kerry certainly deserve to be seen as the best team in the country at the moment. Their firepower is unmatched, although some question marks do remain over other areas in the side.

Their defence has looked a bit suspect at times in recent years, while Jim McGuinness is unconvinced about their goalkeeping strategy.

Speaking to Sky Sports, the former Donegal manager said their 'traditional' approach to goalkeeping could prove to be an issue as they face better teams later in the championship.

There's question marks at the back potentially, because they haven't really been fully tested. I do know the structure is better than last year. But in terms of the overall package, I'm not sure if it's 100 per cent there yet.

Then the goalkeeping situation is not 100 per cent clear down there. And the goalkeeping strategy is very traditional.

Last year when the pressure went on, it [struggled]. Teams are very switched on to things like that. If they can get a high press going on them, and force it long, then there's a good possibility that they know where it's going. Then you're starting to get your midfielders, half-backs to attack that really aggressively, breaking ball.

The team with the right physical profile could create a situation where they could pen them in on their own kick-out, push up. Dublin could definitely do that. We've seen that many times, in terms of 15 out the park and asking that question.

And the burden of ending the county's eight-year wait for an All-Ireland title weighs heavy on this team's shoulders.

There's a lot of pressure on the team. They haven't won one, these younger lads. It's a hard thing to do. They've got to do it and they've got to win it. I'm sure they'll feel that they're ready to do that.

Kerry will be heavy favourites to defeat Cork in their Munster opener this weekend, and while that shock from a couple of years ago remains fresh in the minds, a repeat of that result seems highly unlikely on this occasion.

We may not get a proper look at where they stand in relation to the other top counties until we reach the All-Ireland series.

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SEE ALSO: Cora Staunton 'Didn't Like' Meath Manager Comments About Dublin Players

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