61 thoughts on “Club Championship draws

  1. With games against Castlebar and Knockmore I don’t think Aghamore will be making the knockout stages but the local Derby with Ballyhaunis should be cracker. In general it looks like there’ll be plenty of great games across the 4 groups.

  2. Group 2 is looking pretty tasty.
    All 4 will be fancying their chances of making the knockouts…. and looking over their shoulder at a potential banana skin too.

  3. Seeing as it’s quiet i thought I’d pose a question for ye and I would be expecting at least 90% correct. Hope @williejoe doesn’t mind.name connaught players who have won the railway Cup in both hurling and football. No goggle allowed

  4. Intermediate championship looks tasty .
    Don’t know what bookies think but ot looks to me anyone of 8 teams will fancy their chances.

  5. Big ask for county players to rise again after an overladed championship campaign. Flogging the horses if you ask me. Any starting date for these comps

  6. Intermediate Rankings
    15. Ardnaree – Won play off final last year but really struggling at this level
    14. Bonnicolon – Dancing with lower parts of intermediate over last few years
    13. Kiltimagh – By all accounts lots of players not available
    12. Kiltane – Dropped from senior 2 years ago made no impact last year aging team
    11. Kilmaine – Mullens huge losses , bad c-ship last year
    10. Burrishole – over dependent on 1 player not the same steel as they used to have
    9. Islandeady – won junior last year but this is different gravy
    8 .Castlebar b- will have a serious team in earlier rounds but will lose players to there senior team cost them
    7.Louisburgh – Favs last year but went out easy enough. New Management might not help
    6. Davitts – Relegated from senior boyle & mcnamara lots of miles on the clock
    5. Moy Davitts – Went out to a under-strengh kilmeena team last year
    4. Parke – in division 1 this year lots of potential
    3. Hollymount- 2 Coens and Lots of talent coming at the right time
    2. Ballinrobe – Held there Division 1 status forde hung around sees something
    1. Kilmeena. Beaten county finalist more players available this year tough nuts to crack

  7. @ NewDeparture … Great insight…
    I wouldn’t rule out Louisburgh if new management get them humming…
    Don’t be upsetting No3 by not adding Carramore to the name….!!!
    Should be a very interesting championship at intermediate

  8. Gizmobobs sorry

    Crossmilina joint Rank 1 two mayo seniors plus class mayo minor forward from last year will be back in senior ranks before long.

  9. Moy Davitts have a lot of young players that will be better a year older.
    Midfielder /Forwards :
    Conor Reid Fiachra Cruise
    Padraig Ruane Ronan Clarke
    Cian McHale Brian Reape Brian Heneghan
    Pretty good forwards for intermediate level.

  10. Totally off topic, but interesting news from Limerick where Ray Dempsey has stepped down as manager of the county football team.

  11. Limerick could have ended up in division 4 last day the league last year I think, and be playing likes of Leitrim and Waterford. Instead they ended up division 2 v Dublin and Cork.

    The level of commitment needed to try and catch up to the top handful Dempsey would be well aware of having been dealing with so Many intercounty players at club in Mayo. That level of commitment and effort may not have been to Limerick players liking ….

  12. Limerick were not in any danger of going to division 4 last year. They were in fact competitive with Cork and have ran them close over the last number of years, beating them on a number of occasions. They and Louth were the best two teams in Div 3 and Limerick only lost by 1 point to the Louth team in a blizzard when they were the better team overall. Look at how well Loth are currently doing.

  13. Interesting to hear Leitrim players saying Andy has brought them S&C which they didn’t have. Any team without that is like boys vs men. How did Limerick even manage to draw with Meath, a team people many thought could rise towards Div 1 under O Rourke. I can’t imagine senior player having a problem with hard training as they’re all competitive people. Maybe he had the wrong 15 or maybe he’s been making mistakes in approach and they don’t like it. Without insider knowledge who knows. Louth shows a minnow can compete when they get on a run assisted by a top manager.- I

  14. Interesting to hear Leitrim players saying Andy has brought them S&C which they didn’t have. Any team without that is like boys vs men. How did Limerick even manage to draw with Meath, a team people many thought could rise towards Div 1 under O Rourke. I can’t imagine senior player having a problem with hard training as they’re all competitive people. Maybe he had the wrong 15 or maybe he’s been making mistakes in approach and they don’t like it. Without insider knowledge who knows. Louth shows a minnow can compete when they get on a run assisted by a top manager.

  15. Balla don’t have to travel far to Breaffy and Mayo Gaels. Hope they fare better than the Breaffy game last year when Flanagan injury hit their confidence before it started.

  16. Shuffly Deck, the haves and have nots are very stark in GAA world.
    More counties are closer to what Leitrim have behind them than Mayo and Dublin have behind them. The gap seems to be widening further as well.

  17. Agree Shuffly Deck.
    Balla a lot better than people think, will get players back and have young players coming through, two of them that are dare I say prodigious talents.
    Wouldn’t be shocked if they surprise many this year, Terry Kennedy in as coach, would Ray Dempsey’s time in Limerick gone any smoother had he his right hand man with him?

  18. Shuffle Deck, Meath will go nowhere.o .,Rourke was asked if he was interested in the Meath job and said he could not spend so much time away from his wife.
    What happened to change his mind?
    The bottom line is that the quality of footballers are not in Meath at present
    Nobody can name one or two players that are good enough and not on the panel.

  19. Louth with all their funding and Mickey Harte beat Limerick at home by 2 points a few weeks ago. They are hardly going anywhere. The same with Meath, drawing with Limerick last week. The gulf is widening. Mayo, Kerry and Dublin would be time enough to start training in May and they’d still make the All-Ireland semifinals this year.

  20. Dempsey got the sack from limerick.
    Poor results and players not happy by the looks of it .

  21. My Ball, sounds like McStays early days in Roscommon where he lost players and selectors.

    West is best, 100%. And with new structure that’s starting this year it will widen further. Very hard for the counties outside of the top tier to get a look in.

  22. @Gizmobobs … . Not everyone is cut out for Senior inter County management ..
    Looks like Ray will be looking to the club seen again . In fairness Mcstay is doing OK with the Mayo lads .

  23. Very true My ball. And yes, McStay is doing just fine, but first time out with Roscommon results went sideways and players and selectors turned on him.
    Also factor in that Mayo are as far removed from the likes of Leitrim and Limerick as I am from an Olympic sprinter. Even Roscommon are miles ahead of Limerick and have different aspirations.

    Myself or yourself could take over Mayo in the morning and despite our best efforts the squad would still be highly competitive at top level.

    On the Mayo front, I still have reservations about current defensive structure. We are being open upped down the heart of our Defence to often, as can be seen in number of goals conceded. And there is so far no real sign that the structure is going to change, maybe now Paddy etc. Are all fully back there will be changes.

  24. Seems very strange call across the board in relation to Dempsey. You would have to wonder what the expectation was for Limerick this year. Stay up in Div2 would have been a master stroke in my opinion. And at current they are in a position to do that. Anyone that thought Limerick were going to be beating the likes of Derry, Dublin and Cork need a reality check. Granted the cork defeat was a bad one. The Louth game was 50/50 and a good draw against Meath. A McGrath cup final too. I wouldn’t have thought it was a complete disaster at all but if Limerick think they should be beating the likes of Derry and Dublin then better Dempsey to get out because its our lord they are looking for, not a football manager.

  25. @Gizmobobs..”Even Roscommon are better than Limerick” strange measuring stick you are using. Over the course of the Approx 80 minutes last Sunday, Roscommon came within one last ditch brave block by Diarmuid O Connor of beating Mayo with a last second Goal. Then if that had happened would a Rossie be saying that “Even Mayo are better than Limerick “?.. And we in Mayo would be thinking, Revenge will be sweet come Championship If it’s motivation the Primrose and Blue need for that little extra spark , they need not look further than this Blog..I genuinely hope the Rossies beat Kerry the weekend after next, and for good measure I hope Galway win as well!

  26. @Leantimes, if you are going to “quote” someone at least use the words that the person has used when doing so. “Are better” and “miles ahead” are two extremely different scenarios.

    And if any team is looking at quotes on a social media page/forum for that extra “little extra spark” good luck to them.

  27. @Gizmobobs.. True for you, you are right “miles ahead” is very different to “better than” but “Even Roscommon ” is still “Even Roscommon” whatever the Rossies have to do with Limerick , I don’t know.

  28. Illustrating the gulf in grades and how small the pool is of the haves and have nots.

    Limerick and Roscommon no concern of ours really. I’m more interested in hearing how the weekend challenge game goes and who we play where. Particularly in defence.

  29. I see where your coming from now Gizmobobs. Personally I equate the Rossies up there with Monaghan in doing the most with the least resources, ..I wouldn’t have taught of them as one of the haves. In the Haves and Have Nots debate no one can compare to the Dubs who would easily have more recorces than all of Connacht put together. in regards of population, money, the use of the Defacto National Stadium, Croke Park, their own dressing room, let out on the sacred sod first . Because of Croke Park being their virtual home where they don’t even have to pay for the cutting of the grass, their need to use price gouging hotels is much less than any of their competitors . In fact if Dublin make the Div Two final, and they should, it would be the first time this century that Dublin will not have the home comforts of their own dressing room. Convention meaning that the Div Two final, curtain raiser for the Div One final the teams would use the Cusack Stand dressing rooms.. Dosent your heart go out to them?

  30. Why are Mayo playing a challenge game this weekend. They will be playing the next 4 weekends surely this weekend could have been used for more tactical work in specialised training sessions etc.

  31. Limerick may not be at the same level as Kerry, Dublin, ourselves etc but they shouldn’t lose by over 20 points to Cork.

    The players clearly downed tools for whatever reason. Whether they have genuine grievances, who knows.

    Gizmobobs – the idea that any randomer could take over Mayo and keep us highly competitive is nonsense. McStay is obviously a very good manager.

  32. McStay is doing a decent enough job so far. A win against a skeleton Kerry team, a draw against a depleted Galway team, a draw against an average Armagh team and a 2 point win over an average Rossies outfit. We will only know for sure next July if he is doing a good enough job. I’d be very concerned about all the goals that Mayo are leaking by teams going straight through the centre of the defense. 5 games in and there is certainly no clear sign of improvement. Horan, Rochford, Connelly & Holmes and Horan mark 2, would all have won All-Irelands had Mayo stopped leaking goals. Let’s hope they get it together by June/July when the championship really starts.

  33. Nor should Roscommon lose by 18 points to Tyrone and 22 points to ourselves as they did the year/year before player dissatisfaction saw McStays tenure there come an end, so it’s very hard to know, and as you say McStay is indeed a fine manager as can be seen with how we going currently.

    My randomer comment was a bit tongue in cheeky, but the general point I was trying to make is that if you were to send the best 20 players in Mayo on a bus to play a division 3, 4 or even lower division 2 team without a manager, at this point in time with the S&C, nutrition, physio, rehab and other benefits they have had over these level of teams over the past 10 or so years they’d be well able to more than compete with them and wouldn’t show themselves up at division 1 level either. The same would go for Kerry, Dublin et al.

    On the subject of Cork, I think they could actually surprise a few this year, and if not this sooner rather than later. They seem be getting their act together. I wouldn’t be shocked if they won Munster.

  34. West is best, it’s amazing to think that with league nearly over it’s that long until the championship really starts to get up and running.
    24 games to cull 4 teams is bizarre.

  35. Looks like trouble in Donegal reading Karl Laceys column today in The Irish News, easy to understand now why Michael Murphy retired when the Rory Kavanagh, Karl Lacey and Jim McGuinness management ticket fell through.

  36. It’s a pity for Ray that it ended like it did .
    Getting sacked is one thing but when it’s mentioned that (rightly or wrongly) weren’t happy with him ,
    It won’t help his changes of getting a senior county job again as it will now create a doubt in co boards officers minds. I wish Ray the best of luck in the future.
    My last word on this topic is there is a few posters obviously disappointed that Ray didn’t get the Mayo job and now that he’s gone from Limerick.
    Time to move on lads, that ship has sailed .
    Try and get behind the new management and more importantly the panel of players who are sacrificing huge parts of their lives for Mayo ..
    It’s refreshing to see the younger players stepping up .We may not win much silverware this year but there is one thing back that was missing last year .
    Hope .

  37. I haven’t seen 1 negative comment about the current management team My Ball on any forum which is great. Dempsey and all his managment team bar 1 stepped down from their role and weren’t sacked as you keep trying to protray from your choice of words. Mayo supporters are always hopeful, every year we have hope. 2023 is no different for us all. I certainly believe we have the best panel and should win the All-Ireland this year. I just hope that we get our defense sorted so that we stop leaking goals. We have played some lovely football at times this year but there has also been periods where we have been just truly awful. I attended all the games and they were a hard watch at times to be fair. The second half against Roscommon, the first half against Tyrone, the meltdown against Armagh. The soft goals conceded. Are we in a better place than last year, I don’t know is the honest answer, but like yourself I hope we are.

  38. My ball the same happened to McStay in Roscommon after the players turned on him and they got tanked a few times, and it didn’t affect his chances at all and he’s doing alright now.

    West is best is correct, we currently have the strongest panel in county and are pretty much clear of injury so we are in a great position to finally get over the line this year.

    Defensive set up is where works needed conceding more goals isn’t a good trend giving how goals have done for us in the past.

    Looking forward to hearing the lineout for Sunday’s game as it will give an indication of what changes management are thinking to rectify this.

    Also how Callinan and Tuohy lead the U20s.

  39. A few getting carried away on this Blog a 2nd string Mayo wouldn’t beat any team in Division 2 apart from Limerick. Long way to go before we can say we’re Top Table material this Summer

  40. Joeyo I said the best 20 players in Mayo without a manager, not the 21-40th best players.

    And we are at the top table table already, it’s a small table only room for a handful. It’s if we get to sit at the head of it that’s the question…

  41. For some balance on the Karl Lacey thing.
    1. Underage players 20 named ones were not allowed play with clubs.
    2.Academy training for one month n without much gap clashed with club games.
    3. Is it really reasonable for underage players to be doing SnC before school at 6am?
    4. Taking all the promising u14s and doing combine type measuring on them.
    So, whilst that all was intentioned with making Donegal better
    I mean come off it with having 14 year olds doing SnC at 6am. That would mean parents getting up at not long after 5am.
    All of above is not conjecture.
    From the article and from the pr put out where they were testing all the 14 year olds.
    That’s honestly an Academy more suited to pro soccer in England.

  42. I see Dempsey has resigned as Limerick manager, it’s a tough business particularly where there is alot of travelling involved.

  43. On the topic of goal concession, in the Tyrone game, I noticed that the team were committed to protecting the goal and not conceding goals.
    It seemed to stand out for me when I was watching on the TV.
    I took from this that avoiding concession of goals was a priority of the management team this year, or at the least in that game.
    Alongside that, they seem to be testing out going for goals, scoring goals,
    If we are trying to win games and maximise scores – go over 20 points on the days we really need it – it makes sense to have a strategy of protecting our goal, while scoring goals at the other end.

  44. @Swallow Swoops, Yes, basically the goal concession versus scoring rate of teams is massive for seasonal success year on year.
    Take your points and the goals will come is one of the wrongest phrases in GAA.
    Take your points and lose 2-9 to 14 points.

  45. Mayo88 .. Story coming from my Limerick colleagues is players rebelled as very unhappy with training set up compared to previous manager,.

  46. JP that’s true, when goal on you have to take it in most cases, although sometimes the point is wiser e.g. if 3 up entering injury time to get the 4 point buffer.
    But scoring 2 and conceding 2 or 3 is likewise no addition.
    So the game tomorrow will likely tell us a lot about what plan B is in defence.

  47. @Francis interesting view there, hard to know the truth in all of these stories. Although looking at it logically if the training was bad then why is the trainer now the manager. Billy Lee seemed to step away out of the blue last year too. This is the same set of players that lost by 23 points to Kerry in a Munster Final last year without Clifford. You’d wonder do the players think they are a small bit better then they actually are and can’t handle losing to strong teams?

  48. @ Green&Red… I don’t know really . You have a point there . Suppose as Manager , Ray was responsible for all aspects of team organisation ..
    Hopefully this does not taint his reputation going forward. I think he will learn from this .,
    Maybe a return to club football would do him good.

  49. I wouldn’t say it will impact at all Francis, when see how McStay going fairly well now v how his last role went, which was in an actual football county, where he lost selectors, players, Matches and got a long ban for an altercation with a match official.

    With Hennelly and Swan in action yesterday, both could start v Donegal the weekend.

  50. Good news that Hennelly and O’Hora are back. But, there is serious competition for places and geansais have to be earned. With Hennelly in particular we know what we get in big, high pressure games. I hope that management keep the faith with the 2 keepers that have gotten us this far and that Hennelly truly earns his next outing. Not for who he is, but more so for how he is playing.

  51. If management keep faith with the other 2 keepers then how can Hennelly earn another outing?

  52. It’s a difficult trilemma all right. I think though from what we have seen so far, that all players playing are there on merit. Cillian for instance, only getting 20 to 30 minutes up to the Rossies match, and look at what he produced when given a start.

  53. All – there’s an increasing trend in the comments that I want to put a stop to, which is posting information about players’ availability, team selections etc. which isn’t already in the public domain. A recent example of this includes the five changes to the team for the Roscommon game (if you could decipher what was posted amidst a veritable car crash of typos), which was posted a few days before the game. I’ve just now deleted another one that provides inside information about players. To be clear: if anyone posts this kind of stuff in future, I’ll delete the entire comment and repeated infractions will lead to suspension from posting comments here.

  54. @ Wide ball, by performing excellently in training, and then waiting for either Reape or Byrnes match day levels to drop, thereby opening the door to allow him back in. That’s got to be the way of things, the man who holds the No.1 jersey, is his to lose.
    To my eye, out of the three of them, Hennelly isn’t so far the superior keeper that he gets the jersey once he is back fit. If Cillian has to earn his way back in and bide his time, then so does Hennelly.

  55. Pebblesmeller – I’m sure if Hennelly is picked to start this weekend or next, he’ll have earned it on the training ground. In the same way Reape, Byrne, Cillian, Tommy C etc have earned their starts so far.

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