Another day closer to Sunday’s All-Ireland minor final and the build-up (as well as the dearth of tickets) continues. There was an interview with Ray Dempsey in The Mayo News yesterday (which they posted after I’d posted, if you follow me) and I liked the sound of what he had to say about building a winning mentality. Now, it could be all a load of bollocks of course but it’s still very refreshing to see a Mayo manager talking in such positive and single-minded terms. Ray’s sole focus appears to be on guiding his charges into the winning enclosure and there’s no sign in his interview of any of that it’s-going-to-be-very-difficult-to-win-this-one, we-need-to-be-realistic-here or if-anyone-thinks-they-can-do-better-then-they’re-welcome-to-the-job kind of bullshit that we’ve come to expect from his senior counterpart in recent years. Good on you, Ray – with that kind of fire in their bellies, there’s every reason to expect that the lads will do you proud on Sunday.
Talking of proud days at Croker, the same paper has a nice piece with Tom Byrne about the 1978 minor final where the big man from Kiltimagh reminisces about those two late goals that earned us a sensational win over the Dubs in that year’s final. Sweet Mother of Jesus: that all happened thirty whole years ago.
Back to this year’s final, the Indo is reporting today that Shane Nally and Kevin Keane (I didn’t realise he was an injury doubt) are both okay for Sunday but they repeat that bit from The Mayo News that I mentioned yesterday about Aiden O’Shea’s thumb. It’s good news about the other two lads but we really need the Breaffy man to be okay. If he is – and, as I mentioned yesterday, I suspect he might be – then we could really be in business, even if Paddy Power still thinks otherwise.