Derry 1-13 Mayo 2-12: spoils secured after tight tussle

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Photo: Sportsfile/Paul Mohan

As the last frantic seconds played out up at Celtic Park today, I was stuck in a Sunday afternoon traffic snarl at Clare Hall on Dublin’s Northside. I had the commentary from Midwest going on the iPhone and the tension was fairly palpable as the lads were willing the ref to blow the full-time whistle. When he eventually did so, I let out a great bellow of relief, startling a woman in the car pulled up beside me in the next lane. Nothing beats being there, eh?

A full domestic schedule this weekend, coupled with an early flight tomorrow morning, meant that I was never going to get to see today’s League encounter with Derry up in the Walled City. But even though I was sad not to have been there to see the lads grind out what certainly seemed to be a flinty enough result, I have to admit that the match I did get to – an U12s girls football game between St Vincents and Trinity Gaels – was one I’m glad I didn’t miss. My youngest daughter was playing for Vinnies in this game and it was she who kicked her team’s winning point late in the second half. What a proud Dad moment that was.

Up in Celtic Park, meanwhile, we won by two points and from the bits of the game that I heard about on Midwest – where I have to say I thought the commentary provided by Mike and the lads was superb throughout – it was a tough, tense encounter. It sounded like we deserved the narrow win that we eventually claimed but tight games can, as we know full well, go the other way too and this one could well have done so too. The lads deserve great credit for closing out the two-point win in the way that they did.

Jason Doherty’s point right from the throw-in was just the start we wanted. Playing with the aid of a stiff breeze in the first half, we needed to get scores on the board and build up a bit of a buffer for the second period.

Frees from Heron and Lynch put Derry in front but we got a decent grip on proceedings, with Cillian O’Connor levelling from a free after Colm Boyle was taken down and then Mark Ronaldson, from an Aidan O’Shea layoff, edged us in front again.

Another Cillian free sent us two clear and Aidan responded to a Craig point with one from play. Cillian then banged over one from play to stretch our lead to three. Soon it was back down to one, though, via points from Lynch (a free) and McAlary.

We then broke through for the game’s first goal. The score sounded fortunate enough, with Cillian’s free rebounding off the upright to Mark Ronaldson who pounced to poke it into the net.

Heron pointed a ’45 into the wind but we had the final say of the half, a point from Aidan O’Shea, to leave us nicely positioned at the break, even though we’d be facing that breeze in the second half.

We kept them at bay well into the second half too. Points from play from Aidan O’Shea and Mark Ronaldson and a third Cillian free, with two points in reply from Heron for them, saw us enter the final quarter with a five-point lead. That looked like more than enough to seal the deal but substitute James Kielt had other ideas as he inspired the Oakleafers into a gutsy fightback.

Five unanswered points – four from Kielt himself (all but one from play) and the other a fisted score from sub Fergal Doherty – hauled the home side level. With all the momentum behind Brian McIver’s side, a second defeat of this League campaign now looked likely to be our lot.

But we steadied the ship at that juncture, an absolutely crucial point from play from Kevin McLoughlin swinging the contest back in our favour. The Knockmore man followed this up with a free soon after to give us some more breathing space and as tempers rose and the contest strayed into messy territory, first Mark Ronaldson and then our tormentor Kielt were ordered off on black cards.

Mark was replaced, as he was last Sunday, by Mikey Sweeney and, just like the last day, the Kiltane man wasn’t long on the pitch when he found the net.

Five up and time up, that surely felt like game over but they then bundled in a goal at the other end and Doherty tried to barge his way through for a killer blow before ref Ciaran Branagan blew for time and the spoils were ours.

Derry final score

Photo: @MayoClub51

I can’t say anything about individual performances as I didn’t see any of today’s game, though I’ve paused the TV so hopefully I’ll see some highlights shortly. But it’s obvious it was another team effort, one that keeps us at the top of Division One and has all but guaranteed us our top flight status for another year.

Our focus can now start to turn towards securing a play-off spot and a giant leap in that direction could be taken under the lights at MacHale Park next Saturday night when we face Dublin. After today’s doughty win over the Derry lads, this surely is a contest we’ll relish in what is becoming a very positive League campaign for us.

Mayo: Kenneth O’Malley; Tom Cunniffe, Kevin Keane, Keith Higgins; Lee Keegan, Ger Cafferkey, Colm Boyle; Seamus O’Shea, Danny Kirby; Kevin McLoughlin (0-2, one free), Aidan O’Shea (0-3), Micheal Forde; Mark Ronaldson (1-2), Cillian O’Connor (0-4, three frees), Jason Doherty (0-1). Subs: Alan Dillon for Forde, Barry Moran for Kirby, David Drake for Cafferkey, Alan Freeman for O’Connor, Mikey Sweeney (1-0) for Ronaldson (black card).

54 thoughts on “Derry 1-13 Mayo 2-12: spoils secured after tight tussle

  1. 2 away wins from two is excellent.

    Huge Mayo support in Derry, best fans in the country.

  2. Great win today….that’s 2 blanket defences in a row we have beaten,back to regular football next sat night against the dubs…I hope the fog stays away as this should be some match

    Thanks to mid west radio today for their great coverage…they do get some underserved
    negative comments, we have to remember they are our local station with local comentators doing their best.

  3. Well done Mayo, 2 hard fought points by the sounds of it. I’m looking forward to watching the highlights later. I think I should have went to Derry too instead of enduring that 70 mins of awfulness in letterkenny. There were certainly loads of MO cars on the way up the road earlier.

  4. Listened to game on Mid west,enjoyed the commentary by the 3 lads especially Casey who wears his heart on his sleeve and sometimes in his mouth!
    Sounds like K O Malley kept us in it, and the lads rose to the challenge when the chips were down, Well done.

  5. Interesting moment was OMalleys long range effort from a free that went close. Plus him managing to pick out AOS a few times on kickouts. Had some good saves. If OMalley could be 50% from distance that is a valuable thing. Has a huge boot. Summer day OMalley is good out to 65 yards. Would like to see him start again to see how he goes.
    Worryingly I thought AOS/Ronaldson carried us today. Not enough assists or scores came out of the other four forwards. When Ronaldson went off his similar type replacement Sweeney got the goal.
    Think only 2 points from play from the other four forwards.

  6. Mid west lads must have read the comments after the last match. Commentary was very good today, for us that were confined to base. Great win. Should be safe and another win could be enough for a semi spot the way things are going.

  7. Great result up there. Ya cant really ask for more than top of div 1. Keep her lit patsy

  8. Happy with that result. I feel we need one more point out of our remaining matches to be safe. Well done lads

  9. Good win worth the journey
    Great to see BarryMoran’s influence at midfield when he came on
    More direct play, good to see
    Cillian a bit off (by own standard) again today. Might be weary and benefit from a rest for a bit
    Back to heavy training!!

  10. Great win was well worth the journey up hate to be negative but was a bit disapointed with Kirby today he hardly touched the ball and that brillant servant Ger Cafferkey looked all at sea at no. 6 his replacement played well lots of positive tho thought Seamus and Aidan O Shea were immense and Kevin Keane did well

  11. it would be nice to get a result against the dubs the next day.. it being a home match and all.great win today when you think about the lads that were not on the pitch.mc loughlins point and free steadied the ship today.sweeney is becoming a bit of a super sub..only a matter of time before he gets a start.

  12. Big Mayo away support up in Derry today.

    A very good result but an average performance.

    I certainly wouldn’t call Derry a blanket defence, not at all in fact. They were also missing quite a few. Overall, they were quite average and are going back to div2. We should have won this by 6/7 points. We didn’t dominate enough with the strong wind 1st half and hen we did create attacks we didn’t execute enough of them. Out 1st goal was very lucky. For summer, Mayo must start clicking up front..and to do this the delivery from defence/midfield needs to be better too.

    I thought we played well in patches. Defensively did ok, Caff and lee were a bit lose, lee was well under par, but traditionally comes good in championship. Caff is not long back, fair enough. Still, defensively we need to be tighter come summer. And management need to nail down the no. 3 and no.6 jerseys.

    Going forward I thought we were average. When we moved the ball in at speed we were effective. When we were held up and started doing lateral passes we weren’t that good at all.

    Kirby looked like a newbie. He didn’t do much. Was a bit sluggish, would like to see more of him and others now though as we should be safe from rekegation, so while management need to nail down a few spots, they also have the luxury of testing out peripheral players against Dublin and cork, then see how we are fixed prior to the d’gal game.

    AOS was hot and cold. His point after HT was him at his best. For me, MOTM was Seamus.

    We have one of the most talented scorers in the country in Cillian, but we just aren’t getting the most out of him. He should be getting the ball into his hands 20/30yards from goal and bang. It’s not happening though. Still too many of out attacks finishing with a half back shooting or being fouled.

    Quick ball into Cillian, Aido etc. that’s what will get us goals. We need goals to win the big prize cos we don’t have the players to consistently score long range points. Once in a while doc and Kev will both chip in with 2/3 points each from play but this is rare. Goals..goals..goals!! That what Mayo need.

  13. Great to get the points on the road. Sounded like we rode out luck a bit at times but when your away you need that. Well done to everyone that travelled up, best fans in the country outnumbering the home fans yet again.

  14. A great win today at Celtic park. We were the better team for most of the match so we could have won by way more or equally could have lost only for a desperate goalmouth scramble at the end. very gutsy display and a super save by O Malley. conditions were tricky with a number of players sliping early on . A strong breeze and a low sun shining right down the pitch made for a difficult second half for us in defence.
    AOS and Kieth Higgins super today. interesting to see Noel run on to direct Aiden back toward midfield in second half and win some vital procession in the 2nd half when the game was going away from us.
    One thing that stood out for me was the vast amounts of space inside on both sides which could be used if forwards were not bunching so much. We are still trying to break through with brute strength against the blanket defence when a well placed keep pass over distance to a corner forward could so easily unlock the blanket.

    Great Mayo support and our Chicken man kept us entertained throughout.
    Anyway top of the league and a win on my birthday I am happ with that.
    G

  15. wj with two home matches left we should qualify for the knock out stages. i hope to make it to mc hale park for one of them, ill keep you posted. relax!!!

  16. Look at Kerry’s 2nd goal on tv – long high ball into Donaghy, he beats the full back, lays off to Walsh=goal. Simple.

    We have the players to do it. AOS and Cillian. That’s what We need to be doing, in training, AvB games, challenges.

  17. Great battling display when the game looked like slipping away from us. Five points up and then level. That is what builds confidence.
    Meanwhile a little air leaking from both Galway’s and Roscommon’s bubbles. Heard Shane Curran on RTE on my way home saying Ross’ defeat was all down to the snow causing their game to be called off last week. Talk about excuses!!
    And what about Sligo’s 2 = 26? When did they ever score that in a game before?
    Meantime it’s Leitrim U21 on Weds. Let’s hope we do not take them for granted as I suspect Galway did last year. And then on to the Dubs, now badly needing points, on Sat.

  18. Mayonaze, thanks for report; you were at the match and I wasn’t, but I think you might be a wee bit hard. We are top scorers in the division with 8-45 and there has been a good spread of scorers; indeed our half back haven’t scored in the league by my reckoning. In defence, we seem to have shored it up; only 2 goals conceded and today’s at full time when it was all over, though we shouldn’t have conceded.

    Also, we don’t need or want to be perfect at this stage, but we have tried a lot of players and I think found some.

    Six points and the opportunity for more experimentation from now on. Roll on Saturday night and the Dubs.

  19. much better commentary on mid west today. Someone must have told them to keep any opinions until breaks in play and let Mike commentate alone when the match is on. John Casey and Billy were not commenting during play which was much better.
    Sets up next weekend’s clash with Dublin very nicely. Will be a huge crowd there with many people off on the Monday.

  20. Great win but the dubs are dangerous. I thought aos was okay but not very effective as his brother. That twice in the last 2 weeks cillian was taken off bit quiet today don’t want to sound to critcal.

  21. Didn’t make it to Derry today as like WJ my daughter was playing a match (soccer!). Sounds like we could have lost near the but hung in there. Let’s not forget still early March so no need to panic. It’s all about collecting the necessary points to stay up and that looks like job done. A trip to Croker will be a bonus. Should be a massive crowd on Saturday to welcome the Dubs. Looking forward to it!

  22. I went for a Derry win in the polls. I am glad to say I got that wrong They were fighting for their Div 1 status. I know how difficult it is to get a win here for a Mayo team, so this result is immense IMO. Great support today and this more that anything else saw us over the line in the end. There was nothing between the sides really we defended well and we got the goals when they were needed. The O’Sheas were great today. Did not listen to Midwest today but I am glad to hear their production improved.

  23. Great win today, AOS, O’Malley, Keane and Ronaldson were our stand out players. We lost our shape in the middle of the second half when we started to run the bench. However we regained it again at the end and we were deserving winners. AOS really is a great asset to have. When we needed someone to drive on he did it. Mayo outnumbered Derry 5 to 1 today I’d say. Saturday night should be a great occasion. I hope the weather is good and we see an open game.

  24. Cillian was carrying an injury today so we were never going to get the best out of him.He had an ice pack strapped to his knee as soon as he came off,hopefully he’s ok for Saturday evening.Great Mayo support there today,totally outnumbered Derry.Another solid display from Kevin Keane at full back.Ger Caff never looked happy at 6,Ronaldson looked good,never stopped,O’Connor missed in the half forward line,O’Malley solid in goal,great double save and good on kickouts,Seamus O’Shea MOTM.Two points well earned,hopefully two more Saturday evening

  25. @Mayonaze

    I don’t think the comparison between Donaghy/Walsh and Aidan/Cillian is fair, at this stage anyway. Donaghy’s positioning and vision close to goal is what makes him lethal…not just that he’s a big lump of man. Aidan is a ridiculously talented footballer and could very well do a similar job down the line but I wouldn’t expect a Donaghy “Mark II” just yet

  26. – Workman like performance today, we were the better team and deserved to win.
    – SOS is some machine, he won a lot of possession and scored one cracking point.
    -McLaughlin, O’Malley and AOS also did very well today.
    – COC below his usually high standard again today but plenty of time to get back to par.
    -Forde worked hard but needs to mark much tighter as the Derry no.7 was on a lot of ball.
    -Kirby tried hard but he was burning oil early on in the game; he will improve as has fitness levels improve and i would like to see him start against the Dubs .
    – Ger Caff had an off day and his pickup of the ground when under no pressure signals a player lacking in confidence rather than match fitness.
    -Agree that we outnumbered the Derry supporters in the 3700+ crowd.
    -We had some brutal bad wides even allowing for a tricky strong wind.
    -Our backs are allowing themselves to be dragged to high the field we need to hold some shape and stop over crowding our forwards.
    -Great to be on 6 points now and with a must win Dublin team coming to town in sat night expect a huge crowd and fireworks.
    – Note C. Reilly was the ref in the Kikdare v Cavan match so demoted to Div 2 !!.

  27. Well done to Mayo and well done to all of the Mayo supporters. Its great to have another two points in the bag! With Monaghan winning today, there is still only three points separating first to seventh, us on 6 points, the Dubs on 3 points, so its still all very tight. Monaghan play Derry at home next week so you’d expect them to pick up another two points in that game. The second relegation spot will be a real dog fight. Kerry have Donegal at home, so they should win that one. Tyrone at home to Cork will be another interesting game. So a couple of wins either way could still mean there might be some nervous times ahead. You’d expect the Dubs to have a strong team out in Castlebar next Saturday, so it should make for a great game. With Mayo playing Leitrim in the U21 Championship on Wednesday, it will be a busy week ahead. Roll on the next game!

  28. Fantastic result, great to finally come away from Celtic Park with a win. The lads deserve great credit for closing out the game and while Derry should not have been in a position to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat we showed great steel at the death to keep them out. Noel and Pat’s defensive set up is working – conceding two goals in the campaign so far is much better then where we were last year. Teams have been progressively setting up more defensively in recent years and probably the biggest weakness of our campaigns under Horan was our propensity to let in goals at precisely the wrong moment. Well the whole team is working as a defensive unit now and it’s great to see the likes of Jason Doherty moving back and shoring up the defence, he was an absolute workhorse today and if wasn’t for him intercepting a Derry player they would have had another goal. That’s after he got us rolling with our first point of the day. Really encouraging to see him up his game after maybe a quiet few years after bursting onto the scene. Same goes for Kevin Keane, he was immense again today and kept Heron scoreless from play in the first half. No doubt the players have bought into whatever system Noel and Pat have brought to the set up.

    Admittedly, it wasn’t a complete performance and some players struggled out there today, particularly the players who have returned after injuries. We relied too much on AOS to win the dirty ball and often there weren’t the runners needed off the shoulder when he did have possession, but he still managed to grab a few points anyway. Maybe changes weren’t made quick enough when they came at us in the second half. We didn’t panic though and stuck to our game and it paid off in the end.

    There’s nothing like a hard-won victory to breed confidence and we are in a very strong position now to crack on and grab the league by the balls. The team should be aiming for the league title and at this stage in the cycle we should believe we are good enough to win it. Bring on the Dubs.

  29. Also, great credit to the fans today for travelling the distance. Not for the first time it was like a home game. Keep it up.

  30. Good win….but bigger days ahead. I’m not totally happy with this “we should be safe ” attitude. For €&@&€’s sake. We, Mayo, are one of the top three teams in this country. Nobody should relish meeting us.

    I repeat myself when I say, as an active member of our association, what a joy it is to be represented by such as Andy Moran and the wonderful squad of players who continue, year in year out, to represent us with such distinction.

  31. Glad to be of help Gerry G!…I get a bit caught up & all I can recall was chancing me arm roaring at the ref (after Dillon was fouled along the sideline) “He’s been at it all day!”…to which the Derry fans nearest me took it in good heart & reminded me that the culprit was only just on as sub!!!

    Hope to see Sweeney getting a full run out & that Neil Douglas gets a chance to recapture the form he showed V NUIG.Baffled by (don’t like singling anyone out) Lee Keegan being a shadow of the high standard he set himself…reluctant to shoot & bizarrely stood aside in the first half & let a Derry guy breeze past him.

    A win V Dublin could nearly clinch a semi spot & the luxury of wholesale experimentation!

  32. Good report Olive. Enjoyed your quip re Kirby “burning oil”.
    Like you I hope he gets more chances.

  33. Great win and well done to the team for getting a result up there.

    I heard on MidWest that Cillian suffered a knock and will be out for 2 weeks according to an interview after the match with Noel Connelly. He also said that Tom Parsons is still out and with the U21s gone I wonder does it leave us limited in terms of personnel for next weekends game. .

  34. Catcol -yes, perhaps I was a tiny bit harsh but just saying it how I saw it. I would always be thinking how we can improve and we have a lot of that to do, but that’s normal for this time of the year. Also… Note that our 6 pts have been gained against the weaker teams(Kerry were just back from holiday!) . We’ll do well to pick up pts in our next two games. I think the dubs will be desperate for points nxt wknd and away to cork will be tricky.

    It’s a great opportunity now for mgnt to gauge new-ish players out.

    Alf Stewart- we wasted a lot of chances today. We wasted chances v Tyrone. We don’t have the most free flowing attackers in the country and I think our team has to work harder to score. AOS has the attributes to cause untold damage on the edge of a square, he can win possession, he can score…

    As others have pointed out, our wing backs are very often dragged forward… It’s energy sapping and inevitably a slow build up, unless we are counter-attacking. If instead, we launched a high ball on top of the opposition goal, I’d fancy our chances if Aidan and Cillian were in there against any defenders in the country. But it’s something that needs practice, donaghy and Kerry make it seem easy, but it’s because they do it regularly…but they also mix it up with other attacking styles. If we don’t try it out during the league campaign, we can’t just suddenly turn it on in the summer.

  35. I beg your pardon of course its Mayo Rooster man not chicken man my apologies. You were very entertaining and knowledgeable at the same time That is what makes being there such a joy. Well done for having the balls to do what u do and long may u crow.
    By the way I agree with u on Leeroy .Seems to be lacking confidence since crazy sending off v Kerry in Semi. All that seems to have got to him. Almost cost a goal when missed man and ball in first half and seems not to want to shoot on site any more. He will get it back and god help the opposition on the day when he does
    Form is temporary class is permanent looking forward to getting the real Lee back

  36. In fairness, the only way to look at the game is objectively! Our objective was to win……… Job done!! End of, some very poor performances from our lads but as is the way we want let’s keep criticism to a minimum. But also some real stand outs, ronaldson is continuing to do a very good job in the corner! For me there’s a couple issues, firstly, where to play Aido? He’s needed in a few places, we struggle when he’s not in the engine room, and at this point if we move him away from goal were gonna struggle to get scores! So ideally 11 is what your looking at but not sure if that’ll work. But at the moment for me the big issue is, after 4 years under the monsenior, and playing his game plan were lost as to balance attacks and defense. our half backs are looking to move the ball to our link players and resume defending which today I felt we kept giving the wrong pass and were passing to a man sometimes with 2 Derry men marking him, even at the end of the game we were still trying to run through rucks and then pass to a man going into another ruck! I know it’ll come right, but we just look very unbalanced at the moment

  37. Also – I don’t see us doing anything different tactically (in attack) this year from any of the Horan years, so the reality is that what we did over the past 3 years wasn’t good enough to win Sam, regardless of how close we were. Therefore, perhaps having an AOS/COC axis on the 14 years line would be the extra weapon we need.

  38. If Barry Moran can get bak in and step up to the plate, then it will free up Aido to be used at 14 or at 11 (rotating)

    The only fear is that we don’t want Aido to be a jack of all trades to the detriment of his form.

    Anyway, yes, a win is good. Plenty of room for improvement.

  39. S oshea scored a fabulous point worked very hard all day.i thought kevin mcloughlin had a good game was everywhere tackling and stepped it up when they drew level.kirby struggled a bit but I think it might be down to fitness
    cunnife had his hands full with lynch but was able for him.we were 5 up and let them back into the game we need work hard on holding our leads.still great to get a win in celtic park.well done lads.

  40. That was an exhilarating win. Very nervy towards the end but delighted to see us grinding out a win we might not have before. Top of the table with a lot of improving to do is not a bad place to be. Roll on next weekend and what is sure to be a very tough game.

  41. I’ll answer to either Gerry (Me sisters that came up with MayoRoosterman) but me head will “bust” being called knowledgeable!.There was an eerie silence today so I felt a bit awkward making noise
    – I know I’ve wrecked opposing fans eardrums in the past plus one Mayo fan in Croker last year during our minors loss to Kerry…giving me a mini lecture / put down regarding me loo-ing for an opponent to be black carded as if I was at my first game ever!

    I’ll keep crowing but will hush if I’m asked nicely – just not during games V Galway,Kerry & Dublin…& Donegal!

  42. Got into the ground in time for the second half of the hurling (!) but was glad I did – the support from Mayo was something else and seats in the stand were already scarce at that stage. I don’t know if it’s down to season ticket holders making sure they get the ‘stamps’ or Club ’51 or whatever but support for Mayo seems to be at an all-time high. That’s a tribute to this group of players, who always give everything they have; no supporter can ask for more.

    It was a strange game though. You could argue that a freak goal (Ronaldson’s) won it. You could also say that we went to sleep after scoring our second goal – which put us 5 up in added time – and that Derry shouldn’t have got as close as they did. Then again, they were level with 10 minutes left. It certainly wasn’t dull.

    Best performers for me were Aidan O’Shea once more, Seamus O’Shea, Kevin Keane (a mighty fetch from the sky to start the move for the second goal), Kevin McLoughlin and Mark Ronaldson. Concerns: sluggish games from Cafferkey, Kirby, Keegan, Boyle and Cillian. But we know that all of them will sharpen up in time for the business end of the year.

    Celtic Park is a fine ground and that’s an impressive stand (with no poles blocking anyone’s view). I had to laugh at the the Mayo van parked up just outside the ground on a traffic island on a ridiculously steep slope – the van was tilted at a 45 degree angle! Good thing there wasn’t anything heavy in the back or it would have slid across, capsized it and sent it rolling down the hill!

  43. Had to laugh when Brolly walked past the stand at half time today. I don’t think he realised how many Mayo fans had actually travelled. If he didn’t know by now how much he is luv ed by us foke he certainly does now, the red faced gobshite.

  44. I for one thought the game was a bit dull bar the last ten mins. Mayo didn’t play for most of the second half. Our half backs and forwards were lacklustre. We had so many guys behind the ball at times that when SOS or half backs were on the counter, there were no forwards to aim for. Nobody really stood out – MOTM will be a tough call. Well done to the guys on the win but I think luck was on our side. Mickey Sweeney is a tidy finisher though.

  45. A couple of points before lights out…
    1. Seamus O’Shea is a bull for work and got through some stuff, and Derry men, today. Kicked a great score also.
    2. O’Malleys outstanding double save was crucial and it is debatable that we would have won only for those saves.
    3. Herons two 45’s were a joy to behold. One with and one against the breeze.
    4. Our sloppy tackling and poor discipline coughed up 4 or 5 points in easy scoring positions.
    5. Ronaldson is getting more and more important and influential with every game he plays. 2 wonderful points and a “strikers” goal were crucial to the win.
    6. If there is a nicer away game journey then I have yet to be on it. The drive up this morning was breathtaking. Maybe it was the beautiful day but the scenery from Sligo all the way up is amazing. Knocknarea, Benbulben, Cliffony, the Barnesmore Gap, and, I’ll be back to Derry for a right look around.
    7. Having to explain to my two young daughters what the graffiti “End British Internment”, and “release our P.o.W.’s” on the walls meant! The Derry people (and other northern counties) must have found it very difficult to continue promoting Gaelic games and playing the sports during those times.
    8. Big test this Saturday. This will give a truer reflection of where we are.
    9. Finally, we, Mayo supporters, have to be maddest shower in the country. Away at one of the most remote football grounds in the country and we outnumber them 2 to 1 in their own ground! It was bumper to bumper the entire way home and McDonalds in Sligo was a sea of green and red. Mind you, it is hard NOT to follow these lads as they continue to do themselves and us proud.
    Roll on Saturday.

  46. Great to get the win.I would like to see some more foot passing .The only worry I have is given away leads we need to learn to close games out when we are on top.

  47. I observed our two maor uisce’s yesterday morning, in their Mayo tracksuits,smoking outside the entrance to the team hotel-It looked terrible.If guys are lucky enough to be given a position with Team Mayo, they should treat it in a professional manner or resign.The two guys in the previous campaign were the model of professionalism.

  48. Pebblesmeller was that you I was chatting to outside McDonalds in Sligo?? Unreal support yesterday great performances from Kevin Keane Kevin Mc Loughlin and Mark Ronaldson I felt we just did what we had to to get the points that Derry goal shouldn’t have been as ball went over the line leading up to it anyway the Dubs next which should be a cracker !!

  49. Opt2missteek
    At least one of these two lads that you mention has been with the Mayo set up for at least the past 6 years if not more.He was singled out by James Horan on several occasions for the very professional job he does and has done over the years with them.So yes he is one of the model professional’s from the previous campaign.He puts in as many hours as any of the players plus during the off season he spends his weekends working paying back all the time he has taking off during the season.He was one of our Maor Uisce yesterday,Noel Connelly was the other.

  50. As long as they’re not smoking on the sideline or when they handover the water bottle nothing wrong with it. That would be too much, coming over to get a drink o wather and getting a lungful o Marlboro with it.

  51. JP,I think there IS something wrong with it-fine,have a smoke in private,but when you put the Mayo gear on,you’re part of the team, and to see a lad bringing the gear out of the hotel and lighting up just gave(me anyway)a terrible impression.

  52. Opt2missteek
    Normally when someone calls for people to resign they know the facts first.You say that the two lads in place during the previous campaign were true professionals which I do not doubt.One (if not both)of these lads has been with the Mayo Team for the past 7/8 years.He puts in as much time every year as any player or anyone else,more in fact as he’s at every session before anyone else setting things up and there after everyone else clearing up.During the off season he spends his weekends working to pay back all the time he has to take off during the year to be there with the Mayo team.Im sure he had all in place yesterday before he went for a smoke.If this is all you have to bitch about concerning Mayo football then we’re in a pretty good place

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