Andy’s back for 2019 + other stuff

I’ve been chasing round the place on different things over the last few days so it’s time to pop my head back in here for a quick update. Just to keep the pot stirred and the spoon licked.

First off, Andy Moran has confirmed that he’s back on board for 2019. That’s covered in the Irish Examiner, Irish Mirror, Irish Sun, and The 42. Next year will be Andy’s seventeenth as an inter-county player and, at 35 years of age, you’d have to think that 2019 will be his final one, even if it often feels like he has the capacity to go on forever.

What next year will look like from a fixtures point of view became a whole load clearer the other day day. The GAA published on Tuesday their 2019 Master Fixture Schedule (details here), from which Club ’51 have extracted all relevant Mayo-related information – that’s here.

Information is everything. In this case, I now know that, if we manage to beat the Yanks, I’ll miss the Roscommon/Leitrim semi-final due to a family engagement. Nothing like a bit of forward planning.

That Club ’51 info lists all our confirmed League matches for 2019. If you want to see in a nice graphical way how all the participating counties have performed in the NFL since 2008 then Rob Carroll of Gaelic Stats has just the toy for you. That’s here.

Our graph shows you at a glance how we’ve done under different management teams in the League over the last decade. We’ve been remarkably steady performers over that time but it’s interesting that we did consistently better every year in James Horan’s first term than we’ve done since then. Mind you, we did brilliantly well in 2010, finishing the regulation games top of the table, but, of course, things didn’t exactly go to plan thereafter that year.

Next, congrats to Cora Staunton who won Sports Book of the Year at the An Post Irish Book Awards the other evening for her autobiography Game Changer. This is covered in, The 42 and

I’ve been meaning to pick up a copy of the book myself but have, as I’ve said, been a bit distracted on other stuff of late. My aim is still to get the book and do a quick review of it here on the site this side of Christmas.

Finally, someone the other day mentioned the Mayo GAA lunch at the Shelbourne, which was held last Friday and which I was lucky enough to get to – the photo at the top, shows Mike chatting on stage with James Horan at the event. Like last year it was a very enjoyable afternoon (well, to be honest it stretched well into the evening too) and Mike Finnerty has a good summary of the day’s highlights in this week’s Mayo News – that’s here.

60 thoughts on “Andy’s back for 2019 + other stuff

  1. Appreciate the link Willie Joe…i had to read the article TWICE!! It was that good! Great to have James back!

  2. Awesome to have Andy back. How great if the script ends with him hoisting Sam? So, being American, I am there on 5/5. I would love to think my airline miles can be redeemed for the provincial championship and then for the semi-finals in August and a memorable Labor Day long weekend in Dublin!!

  3. Not half fast – Whats your connection to Mayo? We do seem to have a good number of American born fans. Met a few before our semi and final in 2012 who were over for the games.

    Indeed I remember driving in north New Jersey visiting relatives a few years back and seeing a Mayo flag flying proudly outside a house.

  4. Great to see and hear Andy is giving another year to the Senior team What a sportsman and a proper gentleman

  5. Hi Yew.

    Mother is 100% Irish heritage — was very proud of that. Her family came to US from Mayo in mid 1800s. I visited Ireland in 2016 — had no idea about football (or hurling). Drove thru Mayo the week before All Ireland replay and was blown away by the display of spirit. Watched the game in a Dublin pub and have been hooked ever since. We love the underdog over here. Came back and was in CP for 2017 with my brother, who is also into it, but not as crazy as me!

    I have GAA TV streaming, watched the club semis, got the jersey, listen to off the ball driving to work, was in NY for Leitrim game, was in Fenway for the hurling a couple of weeks ago.. I love the sport. I’m tired of the American pro sports scene. This reminds me of the American college scene a little with the community support and spirit.

    I’m also 1/32 Tipperary but I haven’t embraced that yet. Maybe they’ll be my team in hurling.

  6. Well, James Horan’s cards are on the table now:

    “You only had to listen to the audible gasp among the 250 people in the room when Mayo manager James Horan uttered the words: ‘I came back to win the All-Ireland.’”

    It might take a whlie. In all honesty it might take until the current Dublin team have left the stage.

    Or until Mayo have rebuilt themselves into the team that throws them off the stage.

  7. @ Davy J, it’s great to hear James Horan verbalizing in public what all of us on here are hoping for! The urge not to say this out loud is quite strong now given our past disappointments.
    Onwards to 2019!

  8. Not Half Fast – great to hear. You might have more success following the Tipperary hurlers but supporting Mayo is like a mission where every man, woman and child in the county is emotionally invested in the team. No doubt we will see you in the Bronx in May !

  9. So “Andy’s back” is news? I never had any doubt about it, and I wouldn’t be writing him off this time next year either.

  10. Yew, yes you will. Hotel already booked. My wife and me, bro and wife plus two adult daughters and a son in law candidate! Gonna be fun!

  11. A standout fearture of Horans first 4 years was his ability to take players previously regarded as journeymen and turn them into intercounty players that looked the part in croker in the championship. Examples include Colm Boyle, Mickey Conroy, Richie feeney, Enda varley amongst others. Even the likes of Keith Higgins and Andy moves up a notch or two in performance levels after 2010. Excited to see what he can do with some of our fringe lads over the last few seasons in this regards.
    On a separate note, I see Cathal Horan was among the 20 players in the AFL draft combine in Dublin today. I was really impressed with this lad in the u20 final and it would be a shame to lose him to AFL but ya can’t blame a lad for chasing the dream.

  12. Larry Duff he is an outstanding player watched him last night in U21 semi final he is a powerful young player built like a tank great man to find a pass came home thinking we have a new centre back for years hopefully he stays in Ireland.

  13. JP Sharoze started well but faded out in the end his supporters were shouting at him to get involved and not be hiding Kuba has great pace he hit the side netting in the first 15 mins Sweeney at 12 stood out for Claremorris Mc Cormack Diskin and Gill were the best .The big turning point in the game was the changing of goalie at half time the young lad in the second half was more accurate with kickouts and was more comfortable in possession and safer handling. Big disappointment no team sheets or no public address for a county semi final a sheet with the names and numbers wouldn’t be too difficult with all the technology at our disposal.

  14. Teams for Todays trials
    1.Padraig Holmes Burrishoole
    2.Niall Walsh Hollymount
    3.John Salmon Burrishoole
    4.Thomas Gill Kilmeena
    5.Liam Kelly Kiltimagh
    6.Kevin Lynch Mayo Gaels
    7.Conor Igoe Bonniconlon
    8.Chris Rowland Lahardane
    9.Liam Moran Swinford
    10.Niall McDonnell Kilfian
    11.A.N other
    12.Martin Gallagher Kiltane
    13.Conor Heneghan Hollymount
    14.Joe Burke Ballinrobe
    15.Cormac Blehin Moygownagh

    1.Alvin McCallaig Claremorris
    2.Kevin Mulderrig Kiltimagh
    3.Cathal Higgins Davitts
    4.Cormac Hogan Shrule
    5.Stephen Morrin The Neale
    6.Kenneth Lydon Barrymore
    7.Kieran Conway Belmullet
    8.Sean Og Tighe Aghamore
    9.Ciaran Sweeney Kilmeena
    10.Brendan Carr Ardagh
    11.Cathal Barrett Belmullet
    12.Brian Walsh Ballintubber
    13.Mattie Keane Killala
    14.Liam Irwin Breaffy
    15.Eamon Phillips

    I could only see Liam Irwin and Kevin Lynch make the panel from these names.

  15. No Enda Varley, Jack Reilly, Conor O’Shea ,Neil Douglas, Peter Naughton,Seamus Cunniffe Matty Flanagan, James Jennings, Eddie Doran, Shane Nally or Adam Gallagher today surely there better then the majority of them names on trials today?? Had Knockmore any players at trials under Horan??

  16. Good to see Kevin Lynch at trials today.I feel he can make an impact at senior level.He was a good minor, good pacey defender and had a good season with Mayo Gaels.Ciaran Sweeney is a Kilmovee clubman and played well last night for St Nathy’s in u21 semi final. A bit unfair on him having to tog out again today after last night.TH Knockmore had Marcus Parke,Darren McHale and Peter Naughton at the first trial games.

  17. It would be great to have Liam Irwin back – he was such a talent underage. Great photos of Boyler, David Clarke + Andy from Phileadelphia. Great representatives. They deserve every perk.

  18. Just saw the pic from Philly. Thought I missed an opportunity to see a game. Alas, no exhibition, just coaching and instructing. Feel better now!!!!

  19. My own thoughts from talking to lads and seeing lists for trials look like a box ticking exercise.

  20. D9nt mean lads who think they should be in set up by way. But players who said some other players played brilliantly but didn’t make difference.

  21. @Gizmobobs, part of it could be the fitness tests in particular speed and power.
    The trials yesterday look like looking longer term. One player in it in my view will make a big leap with a full year of senior weights.
    Then you have likes of Kevin Mulderrig, where would he be a year down the line with all his fitness numbers raised much higher.

  22. Gizmobobs
    Jack Reilly was definitely overlooked in my opinion one of the few two footed high scoring forwards in the County he impressed in the trial games report but still wasn’t brought into the panel,
    Was at the Mayo Gaels v Garrymore under 21 final earlier in a very wet and miserable Bekan.
    Gaels were alot stronger than Garrymore in a game with some very fine football played considering the conditions.I thought Gerry Canavan was very impressive, gave a man of the match performance, Strong pacy player and very comfortable on the ball , another player who should be be getting a call up to the Mayo panel.

  23. @Chris Kelly, did Gerry Canavan actually score much today? He didn’t score a whole lot this season per game intermediate or u21.

  24. @chriskelly that was an under 21C final today so I wouldn’t be getting carried away with performances at C level!

  25. I seen mayo gaa stated that every club in the county had players trialled. Don’t think thats the case though seen the teamsheets and can’t remember seeing any players from the likes of lacken, ballycroy or eastern gaels

  26. Has James Horan picked a captain for 2019 yet? Cillian did a good job but be no harm for someone else to get it I think.
    Aidan O Shea be the man I give it to. One of the top Footballers in the country. The bigger the game the better he plays for Mayo I think. He needs to be playing midfield though. Remember that performance against Donegal in 2013??? Aidan is a great talker in the media so I’d take it be a great talker in the dressing room and to all the players.

  27. Only one man for the job of captain in my opinion, Lee Keegan. In his prime, gives everything to the cause, loves Mayo and a big game player.

  28. Good question raised there about the captaincy.

    My gut feeling is that someone new should take over. But, there is a reason Cillian has been nominated captain for the last 3 or 4 years, across different managers, particularly when we used to rotate it every year.

    Don’t know the personalities well enough (or at all!) to speculate.

  29. Probably a more interesting topic is the vice Captain. I could see that going to someone like Diarmuid or Stephen Coen grooming a future captain to lead the younger players.

  30. Its not like twitter here Quietman, people can disagree with each other without being blocked or muted, unlike certain users of that particular platform.

  31. CoC to me looks looks like guy that is burned out–if he is injured perhaps missing the league will be beneficial in the long run.Defining AoS role will be vital.The CHB for Tubber was very impressive.

  32. If there is a change of captaincy I think Paddy Durcan would be a good choice. He’s always been a guy to take on responsibility be it with the county or Mitchels. He’s also guaranteed to start fitness permitting.

    I’m sure Aidan would do a good job as well but he does attract a lot of media attention. One or two bad results and you can be sure Brolly or someone else will start pointing to him as the reason.

  33. @jr don’t think COC is burnt out after all he had no college or underage football this year like in the past. Since he made his debut as a 19 year old for Mayo seniors in 2011 he’s had a lot of injuries and do wonder are are they catching up with him now as players are rushed back or played injured causing long term damage.

  34. Yeah, Padddy D, Lee Keegan or Kevin McLoughlin for the Next Mayo Captain….. Got to be a nailed down definite starter in the first place….. Cillian has been a very good Mayo Captain, but for me he has had some poor performance in the last two years, not consistent good enough to be a 100% nailed down starter, 90% maybe, which is magnificent…But absolutely, there is no doubt about who’s the best speaker, the best inside forward Mayo’ has ever had, one of the best player’s ever in Connacht,. None other than our own Andy Moran, but because of his age might be some doubt about him lasting the 70+ minutes I think he’s not garunteed to be on the pitch 100% of the time.. otherwise it would have to be Andy!

  35. I agree Mayo Magic–something not right with CoC–his body language in the club final told a lot.He needs a total rest & has to curb his tendency to play too close to the edge–if he was a Galway player we would be shouting for him ro be sent off in almost every game.

  36. Boyler for me – a lion heart who will never fail to lead by example and do it where it matters most – on the field of play.

  37. 45, I’d be suprised to see Boyler as a starter in 2019 championship, so I think his chance at captaincy has probably passed. Last year he was a good bit off the pace at times I thought. 3 or 4 years ago he was top of his game and would go all day.

  38. The trials seem to be a pure box ticking exercise alright. Some of those trial teams named above would struggle to avoid relegation from the senior club championship. The “update statements” being provided on the Mayo gaa website recently are also quite amusing. A great example of talking, but actually saying nothing at all. Straight from the Jim Gavin playbook on dealing with the media!
    Nothing at all wrong with that of course, but it’s kind of funny watching people interpret these meaningless “updates’ ?

  39. For anyone interested st Colman’s v st Gerald’s league final streaming live on YouTube right now.

  40. Tubberman – you may be right but I’ve a feeling the following a good long break this autumn there’ll still be plenty of life in the young pup yet to be at least in consideration for a captains role in ’19 !!

  41. Roll on the FBD … Seems years since we had a match . Looking forward to seeing some new players in action .

  42. On the captaincy debate…

    Have to agree with tubberman re boyler, warrior that he is id be surprised/worried to see him starting every game this year, he looked badly shot last year and his all action style of play doesnt lend itself to longevity, would be a serious man to chuck in with 20 minutes to go to close out a game.

    Wouldnt give it to AOS, would prefer if he was left to concentrate on his football as any further media distractions for him would be divisive

    For me Horan can make a real statement here by giving it to one of the young leaders who stepped up in the Newbridge game, would put a fresh look on things, therefore my captain would have to be one of Paddy Durcan or Diarmuid o’connor. 2 guaranteed starters who never shy away from responsibility, also would send a message to any young rookies that the rewards are there for them if they grasp the nettle like the 2 lads have

  43. Wouldn’t be surprised if JH gives captaincy to a senior player either . David Clarke or Lee would be options ..

  44. Lee Keegan has to be captain, we need a player of his stature who always delivers on the big occasions, he has to be the captain. It cannot be given to AOS or anyone else because it appears to me that big occasions get to them and the distraction of captaincy will only add to the problem, Lee all day long for me.

  45. Big win for Claremorris in the U21 final tonight. Didn’t see any way Westport would be beat. You’d have to question why players are playing until 10:15pm on a night like tonight!

    Although I wasn’t there I’m assuming James McCormack played a major part for Claremorris. He could have a big role for the county in 2019, think he has a lot of potential.

  46. Wide Ball, your 100% right there…. Same could be said for the ladies All Ireland Club Final today, the year is long, playing club matchs in the Dept of Winter, short days, dreadful weather is ridiculous…95% + of player’s of both sex’s are NOT County player’s…. After a brilliant Sunny Summer, Mayo’ Senior”s were out since the last weekend of June, … The tail is definitely wagging the ? …… Bad for supporter’s, bad for Pitches, bad for the increased likely hood of injury’s, just pure stubid if you ask me… for me there should be absolutely NO Gaelic football , November, December, January and February…. If the powers that be cannot manage to successfully organise fixture’s, between Club and County, during the best eight months of the year? Then it’s past time to change the personell in the powers that be!. .. And for Mayo’, let’s forget the FBD, what did we find out from it last January,. Nothing, but we destroyed the playing surface in McHale Park, and I nearly got Phenomeua!

  47. Good win for Claremorris. Not surprised by the result as this group have won u14, u16, minor and. Now the u21 title….maybe senior in a few years?

    I think Mayo needs the likes of Claremorris doing well (4th largest town) and we need the likes of Ballina back to the fore too.

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