Enniskillen Gaels U21 manager Rory Rafferty has made no secret that their aim is to take a step further than they did last year in the Ulster U21 Club Champions Tournament.

However, Rafferty also acknowledges that they face a big test having been drawn against Derry champions O’Donovan Rossa in the quarter-final which takes place on Sunday at 2.15pm in Creggan.

“We have just been taking it one game at a time but we have said that if we made it back to Ulster then we would want to improve on last year. We played Carryduff last year but it was only ten days after we had won the Ulster minor title and we had a lot of those boys involved and their bodies felt it on the day. We want to make a better mark on the competition this year,” he said.

The Gaels eased their way to the Fermanagh U21 title and Rafferty has been pleased with how preparations have gone since then.

“The boys have worked hard, they have trained well over Christmas and we’ve had longer to get ready than we did last year which is good, “ he stated.

Magherafelt though will pose a serious test for the Gaels. “They beat Glen and Swatragh who would have been well fancied to win Derry and they have three players in the Derry senior squad with Odhran Lynch and Simon McErlain having played against Fermanagh on Sunday and Michael McAvoy who has been playing for UUJ.

“They are a good side and they have scored a lot of goals in Derry so we need to be very aware of that right from the start.

“We feel though that we have good pedigree too and like any Gaels team going into Ulster we will be looking to make our mark. Our aim is to make it to the semi-final, that’s the target,” commented Rafferty.

In terms of injuries, Rafferty added: “We have a couple of worries but we have stressed all year it is about the squad and we have a big squad to pick from.”