Club Championships results round-up

Photo: @MayoGAA

It’s time to draw breath after another full-on weekend of club Championship action. Knockout football always has an edge to it and there were plenty of hard-fought clashes over the last few days. And a few shock results too.

Let’s start with the Senior football Championship where this weekend’s quarter-final results really did have the air of the changing of the guard about them. Ballina Stephenites (36 county titles), Ballintubber (five times Moclair Cup champions since 2010), Breaffy (four-time finalists since 2013) and Castlebar Mitchels (three-in-a-row champions 2015-17 and 31 titles in all) all bit the dust this weekend.

Defending champions Knockmore aren’t exactly the new kids on the block but they still have the air of a team only recently arrived at the top table, even though they’ll now be heavily favoured to claim back-to-back Moclair Cup wins. Garrymore have won it six times but the last time they did so was back in 1982 and they haven’t contested a decider since then either.

Neither Belmullet nor Westport have ever won the title at Senior level. It’s been a while since either of them reached the final too – 1991 in Westport’s case, 1981 for Belmullet – but one of them will do so this year, as they’ve been drawn to meet in the semi-final in two weeks time.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s rewind the tape and look back on the weekend’s action.

Westport were the first team into the last four when they edged out the Stephenites by a single point in the first of two televised quarter-finals from the Conancht GAA Centre of Excellence at Bekan. I was out umpiring at a game up here in the capital when that match was on but I gather that Fionn McDonagh bagged the decisive point for the Covies.

I caught a good bit of the second game, between Knockmore and Ballintubber. A superb Aiden Orme goal had the champions in the ascendancy at half-time and when the Ballintubber ‘keeper allowed Peter Naughton’s undercooked free to slip through his fingers and into the net it looked like curtains for the Tubber.

The dreadful weather conditions made it a real slog for both teams. When Jason Gibbons spilled the ball and then followed through on Kevin McLoughlin as he tried to retrieve it, it looked like an incident that might have been viewed benignly in light of the weather. It wasn’t, though, and the yellow flashed at Jason was his second one and so Ballintubber were down to fourteen.

To their credit, though, they kept battling. Three down deep in stoppage time, Diarmuid O’Connor was fouled on the 14-yard line and, with the entire Knockmore team lined up in the goalmouth, he opted to go for goal. His shot cannoned off one of the Knockmore players but the ref gave Ballintubber a penalty, presumably because some of the Knockmore team had advanced towards O’Connor as he readied to strike.

Now it was Diarmiud O’Connor against rookie sub-goalkeeper Ryan McDonnell, with extra-time in the offing if the spot kick went in. The young ‘keeper saved it superbly, though, with the final whistle sounding immediately afterwards.

I caught the second half of today’s clash between Belmullet and Breaffy on Mayo GAA TV. This was a dour and, frankly, low-quality encounter, with multiple handling errors, misplaced passes and endless fouling.

Belmullet had opened a three-point gap early in the second half but when Breaffy brought the match back level they looked like the team with the momentum. Then a moment of utter genius from Ryan O’Donoghue swung the contest decisively back in Belmullet’s favour.

It didn’t look like he’d even win the long ball pumped in but he did, turning towards goal as he caught it and wriggling clear into open space facing Robbie Hennelly. He lobbed the Breaffy ‘keeper with an effort that was as deft as it was outrageous, the ball ending up nestled in the net and ending too Breaffy’s hopes of further advancement.

In the day’s final match, Garrymore always looked to have Castlebar Mitchels’ number. Enda Hession bagged an eye-catching 1-2 from play before being withdrawn with an injury at half-time but in his absence, with sub Enda Varley to the fore after the break, the South Mayo team kept playing the better football. They were deserved four-point winners at the finish.

The draw for the Moclair Cup semi-finals was made this evening and this saw Knockmore paired with Garrymore while, as mentioned earlier, Westport will face Belmullet. Those ties will be played the weekend after next, with dates, times and venues to be confirmed later.

The other bit of business in the SFC this weekend were the two relegation play-off semi-finals. Davitts and Aghamore both secured their Senior status with wins over Kiltane and Balla respectively. Those latter two now meet in the relegation final in two weeks time.

Here are all the weekend’s results in the SFC:

  • Quarter-final: Westport 0-13 Ballina Stephenites 1-9
  • Quarter-final: Knockmore 2-9 Ballintubber 0-12
  • Quarter-final: Belmullet 2-5 Breaffy 0-8
  • Quarter-final: Garrymore 1-14 Castlebar Mitchels 0-13
  • Relegation semi-final: Davitts 1-14 Kiltane 1-9
  • Relegation semi-final: Aghamore 0-11 Balla 0-7

Onto the Intermediate, where the quarter-final winners were Louisburgh, who edged out Hollymount/Carramore, Kilmaine, who thumped Crossmolina Deel Rovers, Ballyhaunis, who put a stop to Parke’s hitherto impressive gallop, and Mayo Gaels, who negotiated their way through a tricky encounter with Bohola Moy Davitts.

In the semi-finals, it’ll be Kilmaine against Mayo Gaels and Louisburgh against Ballyhaunis. Both ties will be played the weekend after next.

Here are the weekend’s results from the IFC:

  • Quarter-final: Louisburgh 1-12 Hollymount/Carramore 2-7
  • Quarter-final: Kilmaine 1-12 Crossmolina Deel Rovers 0-5
  • Quarter-final: Ballyhaunis 1-8 Parke/Keelogues/Crimlin 0-6
  • Quarter-final: Mayo Gaels 0-13 Bohola Moy Davitts 1-6
  • Relegation semi-final: Ballinrobe 1-11 Swinford 0-7
  • Relegation semi-final: Ardnaree Sarsfields 1-8 Lahardane MacHales 0-4

Onto Junior where the weekend’s results were as follows:

  • JFC A quarter-final: Kilmeena 1-12 Killala 1-3
  • JFC A quarter-final: Islandeady 0-18 Ballycastle 0-7
  • JFC A QF play-off: Cill Chomain 1-7 Achill 0-5
  • JFC B quarter-final: Ballycroy 0-11 Moygownagh 1-4
  • JFC B quarter-final: Tourmakeady 3-14 Kilmovee Shamrocks 0-5
  • JFC B quarter-final: Eastern Gaels 0-20 Lacken 0-7

116 thoughts on “Club Championships results round-up

  1. Belmullet were good value for their win today. Ryan O’Donoghue’s winning goal was excellent but his attack on Aidan O’Shea at the end of the match was shameful.

    Typically the referee let a barrage of Belmullet assaults go on Aidan, including O’Donoghue’s punch at the end. How can we expect referees outside Mayo give him a fair craic of the whip when the locals are even worse?

  2. didnt see game and dont know anything about it, but why did Donoghue need to punch O Shea, what happened before this

  3. In second half Eoin o Donoghue pulled Aidan o Shea to the ground off the ball – linesman brings referees attention to it – and he gives a yellow card. How that wasn’t a black card – only referee will know.
    Ref very poor overall – let a lot of pulling and dragging go.

  4. I think it’s fair to say that Ryan O Donoghue received far more rough treatment than he dished out. But he was the outstanding player on the field by the proverbial country mile.

  5. Has anyone got a link to ROD’s goal???? Nigel Reape called it the best he had seen in county championship football – ever!!

  6. Very hard to read these games to be fair. Thought knockmore in particular were terrible towards the end rolling around and lying down every second to run the clock down. At one stage shane McHale was on the ground in front of us in the stand apparently “injured” and Declan Corcoran came over and just shouted at him to “get up!”. Everyone laughed in the stand and sure enough McHale sheepishly got up and played on, somehow miraculously fine again.
    I have no doubt Ballintubber would have done the exact same thing if the roles were reversed by the way.
    Didn’t see today’s game but not surprised Aido was targeted. Eoin o D was on the panel all year for Mayo and didn’t get a look in, and speaking to some belmullet lads he was pretty aggrieved with that, so it’s no surprise he wanted to lay down a marker in the championship against one of our highest profile players. Sign of a guy who isn’t content just making up the numbers on a county panel actually, and for me that’s a positive thing.
    It’s very hard for refs to see this type of stuff but I do think there a lot of reluctance to make tough calls when big players are involved. Aido has been getting abuse for years now from everywhere and it’s a testament to his temperament that he manages to stay calm all the time.

  7. Only in Mayo, people giving out about forwards showing they have fire in their bellies. Dear God.

    And fair play to Eoin O’D for showing the same fire. There’s hope for us yet.

  8. Think from what i am reading that the abuse of Aidan O Shea is an absolute disgrace by so called supporters and onfield colleagues, does Ryan not realise who consoled him in A/L final after his penalty shambles, met Aidan on several occasions and he is a brilliant young man ,total disgrace after all his years service.

  9. I wouldn’t call pulling a player to the ground off the ball showing fire. If he did that in Croke park it would be a black card and 10 minutes in the bin. We would be saying then it was a silly black card as he pulled him down in the middle of the field where there was no danger.

  10. Ryan scored an audacious late goal for his team, propelling them into the semis. I applaud him.

  11. Meath Exile, from reading your comment it would appear you didn’t even see the game, yet you brandish an act in the game you didn’t see as an “absolute disgrace”. I didn’t see it either by the way, so I won’t be rushing to judgement.
    Also, what is an A/L final?

  12. @P it was handbags stuff between AOS and ROD, Aidan was trying to sweet talk the linesman into gettin a belmullet player sent off and Ryan rightly stepped in, Aidan could easily have seen a 2nd yellow for the same incident.
    Ryan will get the plaudits and rightly so, it was an outrageous goal but Fionnan Ryan also deserves a mention, scoring 1-1 from midfield up against Ruane and the 2 O Shea’s is no mean feat.

  13. Sean Burke and Craggy Boglands – a right pair of heroes the pair of you are, posting crap like that well after midnight. There are plenty of other clowns posting self-hating stuff like that on social media at the present time so why don’t you both crawl off and join them? You’d be more at home there than you are here.

  14. I only watched breaffy belmullet on tv but I thought Ryan O’Donoghue got far more abuse today than Aiden O’Shea.

  15. A few here have very clearly never been involved in club football I see…

    People seem very surprised two county players might actually clash in a game. The county season finished almost 2 months ago… Club is all that matters for these lads now. Not one county player will be going out in a game and thinking of an opponent as an inter county colleague or a friend. While some fans won’t spend barely a waking moment not thinking about the Tyrone match or hopes for next season, many players just get on with their lives

    In fact several county players will have absolutely zero contact with others until their first training session for 2022.
    It might come as a surprise to some but not all our county team will be best buddies with each other, that’s how life works. It may come as a bigger surprise to some that scraps not only break out at club games, but also at internal training sessions…and yes this even includes our own county. These are competitive environments and thankfully no cameras are present or quite frankly the internet would explode it would seem

    I’ve seen instances over the years of good friends on opposition teams in club games or in training quite literally tearing strips off each other then laughing about it over a few pints later on. What happens on the pitch and all that, and matches are for bloody winning

    Club football will always be number one so great to see the county players showing passion in their local jersey.

  16. After a weekend of great football and shock results, is this all we have to talk about? Talented players, high profile or not get targeted at every stage of every competition. In gaa speak it’s called hammering the hammer. The more talented you are the more hammering you get. It’s incomprehensible the shock and outrage in some of the comments. It’s football, it’s a mans game. How many times have we lauded Lee keegan or Stephen Coen or lately padraig o hora for hammering the hammer. Indeed aiden was put on Donaghey once to do exactly that too. Can we all get a grip please and stop this constant moaning and bitching.
    Knockmore look to be favourites now, garrymore with Hession are a far more dangerous prospect than without so his injury could be crucial. If he’s fit there’ll be nothing between them.
    Can’t see belmullet beating westport but definitely didn’t forsee them beating breaffy. Two brilliant games to look forward to.
    Think intermediate is far more straightforward now that kilmaine have built up a head of steam. They’re absolutely flying and no one will stop them now.

  17. Very tempted to make it over for the Belmullet v Wesport game. In terms of tickets and capacity are things easy enough to manage now or still restricted? Also, would tickets be got via the clubs? Many thanks for any tips!

  18. Surely with the big change in club dominance in Mayo means that many County players should be dropped or let go. The Castlebar, Ballintubber, Breaffy stronghold seems to have evaporated.
    Can we trust management to look beyond West Mayo ?

    No harm to freshen things up all round.

  19. Agree Ahnow ,I didn’t see Rod & AoS incident but I have seen Cillian v AoS ,and Andy v AoS when they meet in club battle so I wouldn’t read too much into it. Club football has always been competitive and fiery as any ex players on here can testify to. It’s forgotten straight after.
    On a positive note good to see some fringe players showing well over the weekend, although sad to see some more that we have high hopes for still can’t seem to see a full game out .

  20. Nothing wrong at your end, Exile – all comments are going into moderation at the minute. There’s an angry, toxic air swirling about right now and I think applying the choke intermittently might help to lower the temperature.

  21. Sorry for your additional trouble WJ, but sadly properly necessary to try and keep some of the debate in a sensible place!

  22. Most county players and panel members have played well for their clubs in the championship…
    So I don’t see the reason for a big shake up

  23. Lads, who were the main standout performers of the weekend across Senior, Intermediate & junior championship?

    And what county players are still hungover since the all Ireland?

  24. Fair play to you Willie Joe with your coverage of the club games….I seen a lot of the games on TV and in the flesh and they have been brilliant. Your summary of the games has been excellent too so thank you.To immerse myself in the club scene is my plan in future. I reckon Garrymore could be a dark horse this year…they are impressive. Belmullet are no fools either

  25. I think it’s a good sign to see some other teams making the semi stages and has to be proof that their are plenty of players in the county that will merit trials with the county.

  26. I know the indo is a rag that is best ignored but there was a brilliant piece from Tommy Conlon in it yesterday describing his club recently ending a club famine in Leitrim

    https://twitter.com/IndoSport/status/1452186075842203650?s=20

    Its brilliant stuff, rings true for every club person, actually got me emotional and pining to be back playing with my home club.

    If it’s a choice between club winning county or mayo winning all ireland I would choose county title every day of the week

  27. Driveitlong&hard: There were several interesting new names at senior level. For Belmullet it was Fionnan Ryan who caught the eye as a tall strong young opportunistic scorer and fielder ( Ryan O and Eoin O Donoghue were outstanding but are known already). Garrymore had Gary Golden as a fierce midfielder. Really impressive. ( Enda Hession -known-outstanding tho he only played a half- caught the eye as a scorer of goals and points , two footed – a serious forward if Mayo use him like that )Ballina -Luke Doherty was very good at number 12. Fionn McDonogh seems like he’s on the way back. Colm Moran Westport is an absolutely outstanding score taker. McStay for Ballina very useful and jinky. I’m missing others .

  28. Thanks for that link WJ.
    A magnificent bit of spontaneity. Talk about backing yourself. 10 outta 10.

  29. I was at the Breaffy Belmullet game.. the amount of off the ball stuff AOS has to put up with is ridiculous. Of course there’s plenty on here that don’t like him so you get comments like ROD and fire in his belly..or that’s to be expected for inter county players. You’d actually have to laugh at ROD at the end…a real hard man..he’d be better advised focusing on his football. Not sure who the Belmullet player was marking AOS but if he was as good at football as talking he’d have am all-star.

  30. Was Mullin the big driving force for Kilmaine v Crossmolina ?
    Let me be the first to state this on the blog, how about looking at 15 or 20 players outside of the already Mayo panel members to be quickly drafted onto the Mayo panel before Xmas, I mean players that featured highly in Senior and Intermediate championships, particularly from quarter finals onwards.

    Look at Man U, they are so caught up in the past that they don’t want to upset the current manager, a former player, yet their team a total shambles, cannot see reality.

  31. Just one more thing, the playing field will be very level at Senior inter County next year, the Dublin club championship has been very poor to date, the big guns Ballymun kickhams, are gone down, no real bite in games played yesterday.
    No player should get abused from the stands, terraces or pitch, we have all given out about this in Soccer in the past, but I must say some Gaa supporters have a rough thuggery element about them.

  32. “if it’s a choice between club winning county or mayo winning all ireland I would choose county title every day of the week”

    Hear hear Supermac

  33. Is there anyone who has stood out in the Intermiedate championship this year? Lots of talk about senior players but is there anyone from the inter grade that could be of value to the Senior team?

  34. Some teams come on the scene with families and decline with families, could Ballintubber be in this category

  35. I’d take all the obviously bias Breaffy comments with a pinch of salt there. It’s on Mayo gaa tv for all to watch, there was no pinch from O’Donoghue. I was at the game and O’Shea did get a lot of abuse, but not near as much as Ryan O’Donoghue. 4 or 5 Belmullet fellas could have got reds or blacks, but Aidan could also have for 4 or 5 reds or blacks on another day! The consensus at the match was basically the cheek/audacity of a small club like Belmullet to beat Breaffy! Ciaran and Ah Now are spot on, looks like a lot of the people on here commenting are not very familiar with the club scene!

  36. Agreed gowellintrainin, not hard to spot the breaffy supporters here.

    They mustnt get to much club games if they are shocked to see county players squaring up to each other and lots of verbals, happens in every single club match I’ve ever encountered and is quickly forgotten at the final whistle. It’s often totally needless and macho posturing but let’s get real here it’s par for the course in most games

    ROD was getting dogged out of it at the opposite end of the pitch but was still able to do the business and be the difference maker.

    It just smacks of making excuses when an individual has a bad game

  37. @Walterwhite, as you were at the match I’m disappointed you managed to pick out ROD sticking up for his teammate as laughable and missed all the off the ball stuff on ROD himself which needed him having to go off with suspected concussion which thankfully was ruled out..

  38. Goinwellintrain – I was at the game too. There was nothing in the Ryan/Aidan scuffle, didn’t even last 10 seconds. Can’t agree with you saying Aidan deserved 4 or 5 red/black cards. For what exactly? The yellow he did get in the first half was a joke. The Belmullet players then spent the rest of the game trying to goad him into reacting for a second yellow. I don’t think Ryan got a rough time at all actually. He obviously picked up a knock in the first half but there was nothing after that.

    I’m a neutral by the way. Happy to see a new team like Belmullet in the semi finals, but I’ll still call out what I saw. You can’t just dismiss it as Aidan getting attention like any county player. No other county player had to deal with that level of abuse over the weekend.

  39. Mayoman89 – Ryan got hurt trying to win a hospital pass over his head. It wasn’t off the ball.

  40. Pure deflection
    Wouldn’t it be more in breaffys line to ask questions of why they have come up badly short once again in a big game when they were strongly tipped?

    They would have been the most strongly fancied winners in any of the 4 quarter finals at the weekend and got out fought and out thought by a dogged belmullet outfit who aren’t long in senior

  41. Mayoman89 was ROD hit off the ball by a Breaffy player that required him be taken off the field as you suggest.
    Did you see him been hit. If he was it was poor form by the umpires and linesman that didnt see it.

  42. Wide ball – As is your right to call out what you saw. Or thought you saw, same as myself and a number of others here, it’s the beauty about a debate forum! I didn’t say deserved anywhere, I said could have got blacks/reds for consistent fouling.. Same as I don’t think the Belmullet fellas deserved reds. The Belmullet 27 definitely should have got a black around the end of the 60, where he literally jumped on top of him.

    My point wasn’t an attack on Aidan O’Shea personally or his play as I don’t think he’s a dirty player, and God knows he gets enough of that already, but if you’re going to use your obvious physical strength, you have to expect it back.. The move on the Belmullet keeper was a straight red and there were a number of those off the ball scuffle initiated by himself. But these things happen every single week in club football is what we’re saying, it’s not a one off.. Ryan O’Donoghue was fouled almost every time he got the ball and as soon as he got it. They had two men marking him inside and he was getting plenty off them. There’s more comments above this than me that saw it, so its not in my imagination.

    To paraphrase, Aidan definitely gets targeted, but so does every other county player, they are just not over screaming at referees and linesmen waving imaginary cards. Ryan O’Donoghue got the stuffing knocked out of him as he also does every week, but he just got on with it.

  43. I am not a Breaffy supporter Supermac but you seem to have a big problem with them and AOS in particular.
    I said it yesterday after the match that ROD was feigning jabs and there wasn’t a lot in it..I though it was a bit pathetic tho and anyone that watched that game and didn’t think AOS got the usual pulling dragging goading shite that goes on must be blind. You seem to admire that sort of football tho Supermac so each to their own hey.

  44. ‘Aidan definitely gets targeted the same as every other county player’….that is quite simply bullshit or maybe deflection you might like to call it Supernac.

  45. I can’t agree that Aidan was initiating any of the ball stuff. That wouldn’t make any sense for someone booked early in the game.

    Ryan was fouled a lot, but he bought quite a few of them by ducking into tackles and running across the defender. That’s a compliment by the way, Andy and Cillian are/were brilliant at it too. IMO Breaffy didn’t mark him tight enough as he was clearly the key forward for Belmullet. Very reminiscent of when Breaffy played the Neale and Tommy Conroy ran riot.

    It’s probably a big area Breaffy fall down on. They don’t have a Keegan/O’Hora/Durcan/Caolan Crowe/David Drake who can mark the top forwards around.

  46. @wideball yes Ryan did get a bad knock from that pass but wasn’t taken off til the next challenge where he was hit late after the ball had gone.
    Some on here think belmullet should have just rolled over and let breaffy walk over them. They met them on the 45 with some fine tackling and hunted in packs to get the ball back. Best of luck to them in the semi final against Westport

  47. Mayoman89 – I don’t remember that, but Ryan was clearly struggling for a good while after the first knock. He missed 2 frees because of it. I’d be fairly sure that’s what forced him off as it seemed to be a knock to the head.

    Nobody said Belmullet should let Breaffy walk over them. It’s still fair to comment on pretty obvious off the ball stuff that went unpunished by the referee.

  48. Some people need a reality check with comments like “nothing Hennelly could have done about that one”. Yes there is, he could have stayed on his line. Has he still learned nothing from the All Ireland Final. He came way off his line for the two goals and the same in 2013.

    The main point that should be discuss from the weekends action is how poorly the mayo panelist have been performing… let start with Crossmolina, 4 points in in the intermediate championship. Surely Loftus and Flynn could have mustard up a few more scores than that. In the Westport game E.Mclaughlin midfield anonymous for most of the game, Brickenden miles off his man every time, Byran Walsh made one nice run down the left hand side in the first half, but apart from that he wasn’t involved in the play. I know he went off injured…Plunkett and DOC got a point each with a gale force wind at their backs. A part from that they had no impact. People here making excuses DOC was tired. If DOC is tired, why is ROD motoring just find, and Kevin McLoughlin and O’Hora etc. Its a poor excuse for a man who has been off form all year for the county team and yet is never substituted…

    Why didn’t Fergal Boland see more game time this year and Eoin O’Donoghue and Caolan Crowe and Kieran King and Colm Moran etc. Why aren’t we discussing these issues?

  49. @Driveitlong&hard
    A little bit harsh there now on some lads. Thought Eoghan Mclaughlin played pretty well for a guy who broke his jaw 2 months ago and has barely played since.
    Bryan Walsh has also missed a few games the last couple of weeks though injury, whilst I felt that DOC was very good the other day especially in the second half. Watched ballintubber twice the last two weekends in a row and plunkett and DOC, along with gibbons are their three best players.
    In saying that you have a point about some of the others mentioned. Flynn getting 3 red cards in 4 championship games really raises questions about his temperament at any level really.
    Not really convinced by Brickenden at all either. Colm Moran is top class alright but is he too small for county level? He’s about 5’8 id say – you have to be outrageously good at that size to make it. Would definitely bring him in though to play a few league games.
    Caolan Crowe was on the panel for about 3 or 4 years, he never really looked like establishing himself and at 30, surely is hard to see him being any different now?
    I’d be much more interested in players like Sam Callinan from Ballina.
    I think Paul Lambert is a very nice and composed footballer too although he might be a bit small for IC level.

  50. Nobody asking for a red carpet to be rolled out just maybe if they could stop jumping on his back when he’s trying to play football that would be fine. Yeah and why aren’t we discussing which players @driviningitlong and hard wants to play for the county…this is what we should be doing he said do.

  51. Driveitlong&hard – I’ve deleted that disrespectful reference you made to a named player. It’s okay to critique the performance of players but not to belittle them.

  52. The atmosphere in here is toxic lately if I was you Willie Joe I’d shut down the blog the minute the county final is over and re open it again mid January In preparation for the league. There is a lot of anger out there towards certain county players I was Angry myself but decided to step back and let it go. My policy for next year is to take each game as it comes and enjoy it after this year I’ll never again believe Mayo will win Sam until I see Sam in the front of Corduffs bus leaving Croke Park. Im going to enjoy the journey Instead because sometime I think we are on the road to nowhere

  53. You’re not the first person to suggest that, Glorydays, and it certainly has its attractions alright. In all the years the blog has been running I’ve never seen anything like this – and I’ve seen plenty here down the years – and while I thought it would just run its course over time it seems to be getting worse. It’s all a bit wearing at this stage.

  54. Colm Moran would go well at county if we had a more organised set up the shooter basketball style approach. He’s an excellent shooter. 30 yards from goal in space it’s going over.
    Also we don’t have many left footed options. He’s not tall, but he’s quick over 10 yards and he’s got a bit of chunk to him. I’ve seen him do well I 50:50 shoulders as he’s low and strong.
    Could well be our Darren Mccurry type option if we play him in. But we’d have to play him in. In my view that’s fine.But we’ve struggled to be at that kind of teamwork level.

  55. In the spirit of glorydays and your own comment WJ, I’ll leave drivinglong&hards bait where it is and maybe just have an extra sandwich for lunch. Thanks.

  56. Such a pity that a level of toxicity has pervaded this site since AI Final. Anger is present because so many people naively thought we d beat Tyrone. But as I said previously that belief was built on sand. If people care to look at games v Galway and Dublin, we did not play well for large stretches of both. In contrast while Tyrone were not fantastic they were much more consistent against a range of better teams than us. The irony is if we had lost to Dublin by a point many would say we had a pretty good year, gaining promotion, winning Connacht and performing creditably minus Cillian for the year and Oisin in AI semi. Instead anger has taken over, we are turning on our own players and the future looks bleak. It’s not that bleak by the way. A good rest over the winter for lots of players ( and supporters) and 2022 is round the corner. To those players who go out and give their best for club and county I say well done. To those who who feel the need to dish out personal abuse at these same players ( whether in anger or just to make themselves feel important) I say give it a break.

  57. Will the semi finals be a double header does anyone think? Or what are the likely venues?

  58. @to win just once, I think everyone knows by now that they didn’t play well, and if they had played anywhere near to what they are capable of then they would have won, isn’t that the reason so many people are still angry.

    I think when you describe so many people are being “naive” for believing Mayo were capable of beating Tyrone it just adds fuel to the fire to be honest, I appreciate that’s not you intention but it comes across as if it’s ok for Mayo not to perform, that people should accept that as being the norm and just be thankful that they bother to tog out at all.

    It could be argued that feeds into the players mindsets as well which is not how counties with any ambition should behave, it wouldn’t be accepted in Kerry, Dublin, Tyrone or indeed any county who had contested so many All-Ireland finals in the last decade, so why should Mayo accept that.

    Mayo in the final were a little bit like Man Utd at the moment, good squad of players who are totally underperforming for a variety of reasons and like Mayo their fans know they are much better than that.

    They expect better and they’re right to, and we should to.

    One thing I learned recently from an interview is that Mayo do not set out to win the All-Ireland at the beginning of any given year, it’s always game by game and see how it goes, maybe that mindset needs to change as well.

  59. Some one needs to work on our mental attitude and our defense. Great individuals in defence but no system. Horan was our best performing forward at all Ireland level and with Mcdonald surely they can coach our forwards.
    As for goalkeeper I am afraid we need a replacement. Now is the time.

  60. The level of anger is understandable though.People feel very vested in this and stuck by the teams over the years in thick and thin…..it just felt like we were sloppy this year…..too lazy to go and win it.Right or wrong it felt like management in particular let us down.Fans have spent decades on this road with bad luck and no luck then to get to a game we felt we could win and just not show up.
    People are hurt

  61. We’re losing all Irelands because of a 50:50 mix of not being good enough and a general culture that is a bit undercoached for the modem game.
    Everything else is tiny margins or simply not the case. The umdercoaching will get corrected in time given how obvious a team like Knockmore success with excellent team coaching. Expect Terry Kennedy to be more involved likely.
    Now stick on the kettle. Life’s not too bad at all 🙂

  62. Viper Mayo performed poorly in the final. I am not disputing that. Quite a number of Tyrone players did not play very well on the day either. Watch back the third quarter. It was really poor from both sides. My point is that we have not looked like a team good enough to win an AI this year. We have played in fits and starts. We were poor in the first half v Galway. We were very poor in the first 55 minutes v Dublin, then put in a strong 15 minutes followed by an excellent 10 minutes in first half of extra time plus a scoreless second half of extra time. Our half forward line did not have a good season regardless of the players who made it up. We did not ( and very rarely do) have game changers on the bench. None of the subs in A IF contributed much. In contrast Tyrone were able to call on McShane and Canavan, one a speedster and the other a big target man. They made the difference. To beat Tyrone you have to be fast and direct, avoid running into their players or you will be dispossessed. Yet in the second half we time and time again did that. Now if I know these things I’m sure JH plus management and players were aware of it also but we still couldn’t keep clear heads and avoid it. Maybe we were just not good enough to think on our feet out there and beat the system. When you look at our forwards especially there were quite a few inexperienced lads who couldn’t break the Tyrone system or stranglehold. The longer the game went on the worse it got. We needed a goal to shake up Tyrone and to make them doubt themselves. We got opportunities but were not good enough to take them. Remember no goal v Dublin either and only one from play v Galway. That adds to only one goal from play in over 230 minutes in Croke Park. In the meantime Tyrone banged in 3 v Kerry and two against us.

  63. @JP, you can only use the excuse of not being good enough if you perform to the best of your ability or close to it and you fail to beat the opposition, fans have absolutely no issue with that whatsoever.

    If you believe we are still trying to figure out how to coach at this stage then they are wasting their own time as well as ours and we are surely not going to start agreeing with the last man who described Mayo as nothing but “time wasters” are we !

    It would be much easier post final if some people had the usual escape door of blaming the ref but I have to say hat’s off to Joe McQuillan or as some like to disparagingly refer to him as “Dublin Joe”.

    We also didn’t have a Covid outbreak like Tyrone did, that robbed us of another crutch, a few tried to use the Cillian injury as an excuse but I’m afraid when you have a panel of over 40 players and given that Ryan upped his game following Cillian’s injury that excuse doesn’t wash either.

    Playing the so called “best team ever” was also another handy crutch to lean on.

    The latest one is that we didn’t play anywhere near our best against Galway or Dublin and while that is true we still managed to win the games but it also opens up a whole new can of worms as to why we are not performing to our best because it is simply not acceptable to use that as an excuse and that’s why people are angry.

    It’s a well established fact that the majority of players did not perform to what they are capable of in the most important day of all and by his own admission James Horan has “learnings” to take from the game.

    And that is the crux of the anger, there’s a feeling creeping in that many involved just do not care enough or are not focused enough, the reasons are of course debatable as to what the main reason or reasons are.

    Whatever has been spent on the team in the last decade pales into comparison as to what supporters have spent following them in that time, not to mention the physiological damage being done to every Mayo man, woman and child regardless if they follow the team or not.

    We are just sick of being humiliated and spending millions on a team who for some reason couldn’t give it their all when it mattered most, couldn’t handle being favorites, there was no one to blame only themselves.

    Is it any wonder people are angry, they’ll still be angry in years to come about this, never mind a few weeks after.

  64. This crack about a player being too small for inter County is not true, it’s now more to do with strength and conditioning, Tyrone seemed to be a generally small team and they won the All Ireland.

    What’s the point of people mentioning players that are playing well in club championship and saying they should be brought in to the Mayo panel. Management may only add one or two of them to the team in 2022.

    Mayo have the most experienced Management in place over any other County but are just not learning from past failures, will this change in 2022 ? I doubt it.

  65. @to win just once, we lost by 5 points with a terrible performance and the two goals Tyrone scored were absolutely gifted to them, so we can’t blame that on “a few inexperienced lads who couldn’t break the Tyrone system”.

    If you were told before the game that Conroy and Ryan would score 10 points between them before throw in you’d have signed a contract for that all day long.

  66. Driveitlong&hard – I’m not allowing that comment up as it borders on trash-talking. If you want to try making it in a less pejorative way then fire ahead.

  67. Ah Willie Joe there was no disrespect or contempt in that comment. It is just a fact that Ben Doyle got a league debut ahead of Kieran King last year. When it could be argued King was the more inform player.

    The censorship is becoming over the top…

  68. Jeez,
    I just popped my head in here for a quick look as I had promised myself some much needed space between me and Mayo. I’m glad to see the anger hasn’t dissipated, to be honest. Unless we become far more expectant and demanding then standards will slip and fall. We need to become more like the Kerry supporters that Paidi referenced “fucking savages” because it’s plain to see we are all fed up of hearing the same old excuses reeled out by management and the county board. So it’s the fans fault that we expected to beat Tyrone? And, we’re going to take “learnings from this”? What absolute horseshite. How much more do they have to learn because the only thing that I can clearly see that they are learning, is learning new ways to lose.
    Winners find a way, losers look for excuses. Tyrone are winners, so………..

    As for the club championship, I was in Claremorris on Sunday and I have to say that Garrymore won at their ease. Certainly far more than the scoreline suggests. Pacy, very good use of the ball, a clearly defined game plan, vocal leaders on the pitch and a few ‘auld dogs to keep everyone on their toes. Not that he will, but Ray Dempsey wouldn’t want to take them too lightly.

    Keep up the good work WJ, and hold the head.

  69. How the point is made is also relevant Driveitlong&hard – why take a swipe when there’s no need to? You’re not being censored and I’ll make no apology for doing what I can to ensure that the debate is conducted in a fair and reasonable tone. That’s a bloody hard battle right now.

  70. Driveitlong&hard – in all fairness, Doyle got a debut as a corner back. Something we’re very short of on the county panel. King plays as a half back/sweeper for Knockmore. The panel is bursting at the seems with half backs. You can’t directly compare both players like that.

  71. @Viper, Yes, I think we have a long way to go in coaching. Knockmore, a club side, with a medium pick, you’d have to say their attacking play and defensive play looks better coached than Mayo.
    If one measured the passes to get a shot off, then Knockmore trump Mayo by a distance.
    The players are a mix of talent levels like any team, but ultimately if you make me pick the reason we could not beat Tyrone?
    They could get a shot off in less passes than we could to a shooter in space.
    That is the main under coached thing in Mayo football that Knockmore have figured out to punch above the level of their pick.
    Knockmore had 5 u19s last year.
    Coaching.
    Pass pass shoot.
    Pass pass pass shoot.
    Pass pass pass pass shoot.
    Think how many Knockmore scores are no more than four passes out of the half backline.
    Now anecdotally look at Mayo or other club sides.
    This is the culture of basketball brought in by Terry Kennedy. There is no democracy in shooting in basketball. You get the ball to one of your three shooters in space.

  72. Willie Joe this is my final comment and I won’t comment on the blog again after this.

    You are complaining that there is a toxic and angry atmosphere on the blog. To call the comment I made as trash talking and pejorative is not a fair and reasonable response. Everything I said in the original comment was correct; Doyle has been a named as a sub for Westport and King is a county winner and that maybe there is a bias toward Westport players.

    Even on his interview on RTE the reporter said to Horan you must be delighted that Westport won. Even she is hinting towards a bias.

    Who was I having a swipe at?

    The very first comment on this post includes a comment “the referee let a barrage of Belmullet assaults go on Aidan”. Surely that comment is having a swipe at the referee? Surely that comment is disrespectful to the referee? Surely that comment is unfair towards the Belmullet players to insinuate they committed assaults?

    You probably won’t post this comment because you will make the assumption that I am now having a swipe at you when I’m just looking for some fairness across the board…

  73. Wide Ball, Martin ó Connell played his first championship game at FF. Brendan Reilly played at corner back and corner forward, same with Coyle and Geraghty.
    Try some of our backs as forwards.

  74. JP I dont think you can compare Knockmore to Mayo as regards coaching. Knockmore operate in an environment where every team they play have at least a good few players that will never play county because they are not good enough. Mayo operate in an environment where mostly every team they play contain good players that are ideally conditioned. Its like comparing seniors to juniors – not possible.

  75. Driveitlong&hard – I think you’ve just proved my point about the near impossible job I’ve got in trying to moderate the debate here.

  76. Good article by Mark Ronaldson in this weeks Western. I didn’t realise Jordan Flynn got sent off, I thought he had got his discipline in check. Does anyone know much about Jarlath Mullins? Is he worth a call up? Darren Coen with 2.5 at the weekend. Good to see he is motoring well..

  77. Uncle Buck – apologies, that comment of yours is up now, I’m not sure what happened there.

    Just in case anyone wants to take up the challenge you posed, the question was to name a Mayo fifteen, comprising current players who haven’t played for the county team but who might be regarded as good enough to do so.

  78. I think JP has a point on the coaching of players in Mayo, especially in attacking play.
    I’ve watched 3 senior games live in the last 2 weekends in the county. I saw some very talented young forwards, with county potential, being skilled in possession but surprisingly poor in terms of off the ball movement. Conor Diskin was one, he just seemed to run toward the ball carrier at all times, collect a short hand pass and turn and run at the balintubber defence last week. Despite an astonishingly powerful physique and a real turn of pace, this head down, solo though 3 men approach – well it was meat and drink for the experienced tubber defence. A year or two at the elite level would do him wonders as the raw materials are there to become a quite unique player. I suspect he’d win every athletic test going at any combine event for Mayo club players.
    Another guys with a high ceiling in my opinion is Ciaran Gavin. Beautifully composed in possession, good pace and skills. However a lot of the time he seemed to find himself running across players on his own team and generally not moving off the ball like an elite intercounty forward would.
    All of this stuff can be coached with the right attitude and coaching.
    Colm moran was very impressive off left and right the other day and moves very well of the ball as an inside forward. Really hope he gets a look during the league next year.

  79. You know the Club Championship which is great, not that it has improved our collective humor or anything as regards our emotions towards a few members of the County Team, the Management, or the County Board. Guess we are going to have to go through it before we see that light at the end of the tunnel. Well the Club Championship played in Winter conditions is quite different from the Summer intercounty Championship, last year it was the opposite we had a Summer Club Championship and a Winter Intercounty Championship, and while we all watch games, some players are getting criticism in club games because of a perception of their failures in the All Ireland final.. It rarely work’s out, for a number of different reasons that everyone who was stellar in the All Ireland is equally Stellar in the Club Championship, and the opposite is in my opinion equally true.. Two particular criticism I read in the comments, I have to take issue with, one re Robbie Hennelly and Ryan O Donohue, sublime Goal, Robbie done absolutely nothing wrong on that occasion, it’s the quality of the finish that deserves the credit, rather than any blame being deserved by the goalkeeper.. Another was the criticism of Eoghan McLoughlin, Jesus we all have suffered since the All Ireland final, but Eoghan McLoughlin suffering started 4 week’s earlier, and while we were celebrating, Eoghan was in Hospital with a double jaw break, and as well as the physical pain of that, the young man had to know that his All Ireland was not going to happen.. It’s great to see Eoghan back able to play in a physical contact sport, and I wouldn’t be critical of him either if he wasn’t quite at his squash buckling best just yet.. Personally I have seen enough from Eoghan both this year and last year not to have any doubt of him meriting a place in the Mayo team. I suppose, while the GAA have to grapple with whatever to do with the Championship, wouldn’t be just great if the Club Championship could also be played in better weather, well over 95% of Club player’s are non intercounty players and I the collective will and brain power of the GAA can be mobilised to improve their lot!

  80. @Sinabhuil, The coaching comparison is strictly that Knockmore are more automatic about their attacking play, it’s more prerehearsed.
    Then, they are selective about who shoots.
    Your logic misses that Knockmore compete at this lower level with non county players themselves.
    Mayo in my view have had a near total democracy of who shoots and in my view a lack of pre rehearsed moves.
    Gaelic football is not totally random. One can build in patterns.

  81. @uncle buck – most of the players in contention would have been involved at some level with Mayo. I’ll pick a 15 that might not all be ready NEXT YEAR, But could be a very strong side in the coming years. Will exclude players outside the 41 this year and players who have been on panels for several years previously, eg Jason Gibbons, David Drake.

    1. Luke Jennings
    2. Johnny Maughan
    3. Kieran King
    4. Ruairi Keane
    5. Paul Lambert
    6. Sam Callinan
    7. Ethan Henry
    8. Padraig Walsh
    9. Bob Tuohy
    10. Cian McHale
    11. Conor Diskin
    12. Matthew Leneghan
    13. Conor Mcstay
    14. Ciaran Gavin
    15. Colm Moran

    A bit of a stab in the dark as there’s a lot of players I haven’t seen in the county. This is pretty much an u23 side not in the 41 man county panel already. Fully accept the likes of Caolan Crowe, Peter Naughton, Kevin Keane and a few others would be better than many of these lads right now, but this is more a look towards the future.
    Some of these names are based on hearsay, I haven’t seen Padraig Walsh or Luke Jennings play for example.

  82. Interesting stuff there Larry. Diskin had a season during James’s first year. He tried awfully hard I thought, bust a gut, but didn’t score much if at all. Not sure if he was able to commit fully after that or what the story was. I thought the potential at u20 was huge, and talking to some Claremorris people at one of the games in 2020, they confirmed all of this.

    I feel we have to go for scoring forwards now. We don’t need that many, just one or two, but they have to be able to score freely, because those scores will dry up any way against Tyrone or Dublin backs, and maybe Kerry now with Paddy Tally on board. If Diskin could develop the confidence to score freely, the sky is the limit.

  83. Uncle Buck there’s a quick response

    1. Conor McDonnell
    2. Myles Kelly (a good old pal of Horans, you never know experience in key in this department)
    3. Eddie Doran
    4. Kenneth Lyndon
    5. P. Lambert
    6. Kieran King
    7. Sam Callinan
    8. Padraig Prendergast
    9. Fionnan Ryan
    10. Gary Golden
    11. Mcstay
    12. Dempsey
    13. Colm Moran
    14. Jarlath Mullins
    15. Frank Irwan

  84. Uncle Buck took on your challenge. Simply a team outside the 41 with an eye on youth or physically fit enough.
    1. Luke Jennings
    2. Niall McManamon/Joe Geraghty
    3. Brian McDermott/Kenneth Lydon
    4. Alfie Morrison
    5. Sam Callinane
    6. Ruari Keane
    7. Kieran King
    8. Gary Golden/Shane McHale/Bob Tuohy
    9. Jack Fallon/Padraig Prendergast
    10. Padraig Walsh
    11. Conor Mcstay
    12. Pearce Rutledge
    13. Colin Moran/Cian McHale
    14. Dylan Prendergast
    15. Oisin Lally/Ciaran Gavin
    Think all in all quite a few of those will be at the combine.
    Dylan Prendergast injured but a quality player.

  85. 1. Adrian Phillips
    2. Niall McManamon
    3. Seamus Cunniffe
    4. Kieran King
    5. S Callinan
    6. Aaron McDonnell
    7. Cian Burke
    8. Conor Reid
    9. Jack Fallon
    10. Conal Dempsey
    11. Conor McStay
    12. Darragh Keaveney
    13. Cian McHale
    14. Ronan Carolan
    15. Stephen O Malley

  86. Was Ben Doyle injured for Westport?

    If he was actually fit, that’s some going if an active county panelist can’t even make his club team, don’t recall many if any instances of that happening before (unless coming back from injury or whatever)

    I know Mark Moran has been struggling a bit with injury but I thought he carried some good ball and showed well upon his introduction on Sat. Still very young, wouldn’t discount him as a future Mayo starter at all. Plenty of confidence, and well able to kick a score

  87. Matty Flanagan

    Niall McManamon
    David Drake
    Caolan Crowe

    Ruari Keane
    Kieran King
    Sam Callinan

    Gary Golden
    Fionnan Ryan

    Pearse Ruttledge
    Padraig Walsh
    Connell Dempsey

    Colm Moran
    Conor Diskin
    Conor McStay

    Might be too late for some of those to make it, but on form they should be in the conversation. Fionnan Ryan is an interesting one as I’d seen very little of him before the weekend. Looks at least 6’3″ and had the pace to drive forward and get 1-1. Still only 19 or 20 I think.

  88. @wide ball, Fionan Ryan is u20. Ya, around the 6’3″ mark and a natural heavyweight.
    I’m a big fan of David Drake, we never used him as a man marking corner back.
    Caolan Crowe, another man always seemed to do well any chance he got.
    Crowe kept us up in the league one year by keeping Paddy McBrearty quiet.

  89. jarlath Mullen and Adam Barret from Kilmaine, John Gallagher from Mayo Gaels are worth a look…

  90. I mentioned him before – I think Kuba Callaghan from Ballagadereen has that burst of pace over the first 5 yards to take him pass defenders. He is also a good finisher. One thing you need when you get to Croke park is pace.

  91. Southmayo Exile – I forgot about Kuba. Would definitely have him near the top of the list for potential forwards.

  92. 1. Luke Jennings
    2. Niall Mc
    3. Johnny Maughan
    4. Alfie Morrison
    5. Sam Callinan
    6. Kieran King
    7. Conor Igoe
    8. Gary Golden
    9. Padraic Prendergast
    10. James Gibbons
    11. Conor McStay
    12. Conor Diskin
    13. Colm Móran
    14. Kevin Keane
    15. John Gallagher

    Honourable mentions:
    Ethan Henry, Paddy Heneghan, Ruari Keane and Adam Barrett

  93. Kuba I think could make a good impact sub. He’s very direct, he runs right at you. Wouldn’t tend to be a playmaker, but if you needed someone to come on with 10 mins to go and pressure the opposition with some direct pace.

  94. Funny how players like Caolan Crowe, E O Donoghue and Mark Moran got game time for Mayo and were outstanding , but never got game time again,

  95. I have heard of lots of lads here that were the bees knees but when they got their chance they made no impact. I don’t remember much call for ohora or some of the westport boys who have made a big difference. I don’t think there is any bias in selection, just better judgement by the management team

  96. I think some of the points about player selection are fair for example EOD never let mayo down and he has been dropped I would consider him a better player than Plunkett and Brickenham for example. He is definitely showing that so far in the club championship.

    On the Ben Doyle one, I don’t know much about this lad. Have I been missing something, has this lad been prominent in the club championship over the past few years and I just didn’t hear about it?

  97. Better judgment by the management? .. Mayo started the second half of last December All Ireland final playing with a sweeper despite the fact that Dublin were down to 14 men for 10 minutes.. Dublin read us like a book and decided to just play around with the ball for 10 minutes in their own half until Dublin were back to 15.

  98. My memory is there was loads of talk about O’Hora in the 19 club championship. I remember him having a great game marking Aiden O’Shea. The Ah Ref podcast was very interesting last week when the 4 players were asked what players they think should be brought into the panel

  99. That fact is that there aren’t many outside the panel that should be in it, and any that are in that situation have some valid reason. For example it’s strongly rumoured that Diskin would have been in there over the last year but Horan couldn’t persuade him to give the commitment required. Some lads don’t want to give the insane commitment required and that’s fair enough.
    Horan wouldn’t deliberately leave a player off if he thought they would improve the side even by 1%. Why on earth would he do that? It doesn’t even make sense.
    If we are honest, most of the fringe players have slight limitations in their game that are likely to be exposed at the very highest level. They could be physical, mental or skill level limitations but they are there. EOD is a superb defender at club level and has played well in spurts at IC level without ever fully establishing himself. I think they feel his composure on the ball, in possession, is suspect at the very elite level (an AI final against the likes of Dublin in Croker). Not saying that’s necessarily true, but Horan does seem to favour good ball users like hession, durcan, keegan, Mullins in those defensive roles. Especially when you think that the Horan game plan relies on defenders running from deep in possession.
    The players not on the panel that excite me most are the younger guys 23 and under. There’s still scope for substantial development in these lads. With respect to older lads like Crowe, Shane McHale, drake, Keane etc, it’s less likely they are going to make the massive step up to IC level as easily.

  100. An awful lot depends on the injury situation with all these teams. men were dropping like flies in bekan last week.
    With Keane limping out for Westport and McHale/Reape going off for knockmore, those absentees could have huge bearing on things, if they are all good to go then i make knockmore slight favourites over wesport to win it.
    Garrymore are motoring nicely though, they are definitely a dark horse

    Kilmaine in the inter i reckon

  101. Keane looked in savage pain. Hard to see him being available. Hope it’s not a recurrence of the cruciate.

    I fancy Knockmore to win it outright, despite their injuries. They’ve mastered the transition from packed defence to blistering attack, and are scoring goals freely.
    Wouldn’t be shocked if Westport won it either. I think it’s between these two teams.

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