Kilcoo coach Conleith Gilligan believes playing in an All-Ireland club SFC final is no more than what his players deserve.
The Down champions upset the odds on Saturday when they beat Ballyboden St Enda's to qualify for their first Andy Merrigan Cup decider against three-in-a-row chasing Corofin at Croke Park on January 19.
"Some of these players have been soldiering for many years and it's a great reward in particular for them to now be going into an All-Ireland final. This is just reward for a lot of hard graft," the former Derry forward said in the Belfast Telegraph.
"We will now be facing a Corofin side that will be bidding for three All-Ireland titles in-a-row so it does not get much harder than that. Still, it's where we want to be and now our whole focus will be on trying to become the All-Ireland club champions."
Gilligan added: "Obviously it's a great thrill to be looking forward to playing at Croke Park. It will be a very special occasion for the club but it's a massive test at the same time.
"This club has shown tremendous determination over a number of years and now they will bid to do themselves justice on the biggest stage."Tweet