Donegal preview – Mayo News football podcast E34

Mayo return to action this weekend in Phase 3 of the Super 8s after a one-week break that must have felt like a month for all involved. Donegal come to town in a winner-takes-all tussle at MacHale Park with a place in the All-Ireland semi-final at stake. 

On our preview podcast this week, host Rob Murphy is joined by John Casey to guide you through the show from our temporary base in Charlestown – the point where over 10,000 Donegal fans will pass through on Saturday. 

This week’s guests include Billy Joe Padden and Colm Keys of the Irish Independent plus we also hear from Donegal manager Declan Bonner. 

This big-match preview episode of the Mayo News football podcast is now online and is available to listen to on iTunes, SoundCloud, Podomatic and Spotify. It’s also available to listen to on the Mayo News website as well as here on the blog using the SoundCloud player below or the one on the panel on the right.

The Mayo News football podcast’s championship coverage this summer is proudly sponsored by J Streicher. “When it absolutely, positively has to be financed on Wall St.” Visit our website at

79 thoughts on “Donegal preview – Mayo News football podcast E34

  1. I think the wait for this Podcast feels like the longest one in a while! Show’s how busy we’ve been over the summer. Apparently it’s rude to hide during a wedding and watch this on the phone so sadly will have to make do with live updates. To win this would be such a result – I hope all Mayo fans go hell for leather on Saturday!

  2. Good to get the podcast up, well done to all involved, something to focus the minds on over the next day or so. Something else to focus the minds on over the next few days is increasing the levels of noise and colour at the game on Saturday. I’m not one for giving out about our support, but at times our home support can be flat and absent. We turn up in huge numbers, but sometimes you can hear a pen drop such is the level of silence. This MUST NOT happen on Saturday. This is a knock out All Ireland Qualifier on our home turf, a serious opportunity for progression despite what some on here think. If that does not stir up your emotions and passion nothing will. No team should ever come to Castlebar and expect to win. From speaking to Donegal people this week they are sure of a win on Saturday, they think we’re over the hill and all that crap. By God, let’s show them on Saturday evening that we are here for the long haul both on the pitch and stands. If you are heading along to the game, bring a flag, feck it bring two if you can, give a spare to the person beside you. We need to turn our home into a sea of green and red, bring your voices as well, use them at all times, even if things are not going our way. Up Mayo, let’s stick together, strength in unity.

  3. Love that post, Way Out West! I didn’t think I’d be saying this as I supported Limerick to win the hurling last week – and I also don’t like making comparisons between ourselves and other counties – but that old fox Brian Cody was some man to defy expectations against the All-Ireland champs last week with a Kilkenny team that some might have considered undercooked. It was done here. And in some photos post match he looked like a man of 25 again such must have been his delight at the achievement.

    I’d love to overturn the odds this weekend too!

    Come on the fans!

    Up Mayo!

  4. Well said “Way out West”. Flags needed badly and big ones at that. Loud roars also needed. The “Mayo Mayo” chant could be the most important player on the pitch. People who intend to sit there quietly should give their ticket to someone else who will make some noise. A bit of green and red smoke drifting across the pitch wouldn’t go astray either. Support, support, support.

  5. Our injuries are clearing so the panel is getting stronger. If we can scrape through here we could have most of our players available the following week. Despite what Bonner says, playing a lad with a recently tweaked hamstring is risky and they’re rarely 100%.
    I stand corrected from previous thread it was indeed Crowe who did well on McBrearty in that league game but the Donegal man was just back from a week or 2 out injured and made some uncharacteristic decisions in 2nd half when his fitness was testing him. That said Crowe did well but Rochford didn’t play him much and Horan isn’t now which suggests others performing consistently better in training.

  6. Plus the 2 week break evens things out a lot. We were definitely tired since and including the Galway game. And 13 days break is a big boost both to recover and smooth out the problems there was little time to fix. Tipp have just made AI hurling final after a Munster final hammering with a team mainly made up of veterans. Getting more confident as game approaches. From 35% chance to 50 50 at home.

  7. I wonder should Mayo show up at all with the way the expects are talking still hope of mayo win what do you

  8. Exile I wouldn’t worry about the wedding thing. I was at one a couple of years ago and a load of us were watching a Mayo game in the church during the marriage! The bride found out about it and went ballistic. The groom thought it was hilarious. Think they got divorced last week.

  9. Really enjoyed that , fair play to ye . More I hear young padden speak the more I’m convinced I’d like him involved with Mayo . He has savage knowledge of the game , I only started noticing it last few months .

  10. Reading the programme before the last game I noted 2 things about Donegal that pointed towards them not having much squad depth and that a few injuries could see them in trouble…………11 of their players had started all their games up to that point. And they had only used a total of 23 (I think may even have been 21 or 22)
    I guess we will find out soon enough…….. not many squads could have coped with so many key players being out during such a grueling run of fixtures like we did…….
    And yet I still think some of our supporter base do not fully appreciate that. They have got through to a one off knock out game. At home. To a team who played div 2 football this year and did not exactly set that alight. Imagine if michael murphy was to get an early black card on top of that. How would they cope I wonder………..

  11. So what if the whole country is writing us off…it’s hardly surprising…we have been playing shite most of the summer…Donegal are in form…that said I don’t think for a minute of lads will lie down and they will fight until the end. Let’s just see where we are come 7:30 sat evening.

  12. On tiredness, there are a few of our lads who will be fresher than not because they’ve had breaks – Keith Higgins, Paddy (if he’s back), Andy, Cillian, Seamie, James Carr. What I mean is that some have not played every minute of every game over the last five weeks and that can help in being ready to go on Sat. Boyle looks to have had energy these last few games.
    There might be one or two others.

  13. We can only control the controllable and as supporters that means making the most noise and bringing the most colour we can, you can be damn sure Donegal will. I don’t usually bring a flag to games but have bought one already for Saturday. This team deserve our upmost support, we really need to bring it on Saturday

  14. where can i purchase green and red smoke grenades, the dubs always have the blue wans in the hill

  15. Kiltarnet,
    You use red and green food dye on some dried horse shite and then light it. You can smoke it for that extra kick…

  16. Can I ask the question Re security at McHale Park,
    Do they check bags as is the norm now in Croker.
    Do they allow the big horns
    Is there a limit on the size of flags ( that big one I made for the 2016 finals didn’t make it home after the replay, this was the huge flag up against the back wall between the Nally stand and Hill 16).
    Will they let people in without a ticket
    Is their any meeting place / pub for the bloggers on this site after the win.

  17. @Mayo88,
    They don’t search bags going into McHale park,ive certainly never seen it although they were checking them going into killarney.
    Whatever you do bring a flag, the bigger the better!

  18. Great podcast and very good insights into what will be important on Saturday. Have no doubt about it this is a very big day for Mayo. Win it and it will be a fantastic achievement. Lose or draw and we will see the end of the road for some of the greatest players ever to wear the jersey. If this is to happen ( and I don’t think it will) it is important that we the supporters tune into the significance of the day and give our lads the kind of respect and support they richly deserve for their commitment and effort over the last 10 years or more and to encourage the younger lads to give the same commitment for the next decade. Our day will eventually come!
    Noise and colour please!

  19. Mayo GAA just announced an hour ago that all tickets are now sold, no more to go to clubs and no tickets will be on sale outside ground on Saturday.

  20. Not so bad but why didn’t they keep them for just our own clubs , it’s a home game surely that means you get the larger portion of tickets .

  21. Clarke






    Play very tight early on 3 up front everybody else pulled deep long and direct into FF line and try to put goals on them

  22. A more profound question is this. As the date and time for this game was known by the 16th July.. Why was a curtain raiser not organized?, last Saturday Donegal and Mayo Ladies played each other in the Championship…If those in charge were on the Ball this could easily have been played this coming Saturday, bringing up the Capisity by several more thousand…It would also give the LFGA of both Counties some welcome publicity and chance to play in front of a big crowd… The extra fan’s attending would be from both Donegal and Mayo…It would have been a Win Win situation, but somehow the chance was allowed to slip away!

  23. Our entire middle sector has been decimated since the league final to be fair which has to impact on kickouts
    It’s hard for Clarke to find Diarmuid with a kickout as mentioned in article when he isn’t bloody there !!!!!!

  24. Enjoyed the Podcast. Great analysis and honest opinions as always.

    @Mike. I read that link on goalkeepers stats. While it went in to a fairly in depth analysis I felt it ignored some relevant information.

    For example in the league final Robbie was kicking out to a fully fit Aidan o’shea and Mattie Ruane was in flying form and we also had Diarmuid lurking about. To compare these kick out stats with the 8’s kerry match or any of our other recent games is a bit like comparing apples and oranges. I would think even Cluxton would have had trouble finding our lads on the kickouts in Kilarney.

    A good pointer of how Aidan has been hindered in recent games with knocks is, he was almost nailed on to win throw in balls and was doing so consistently up until 3 or 4 games ago. In recent games he has not been as dominant in winning these throw ins.

    I hope the weeks extra break has given him time to recover from his knocks. I think he is the man that will swing Saturdays game in our favour if we are to win it.

  25. Regarding goalkeeper article.. I have nail my sail to mask on that (to dislike of lots on here) I agree whole heartily with the article.. But that’s not to say Clarke isn’t one hell of goalkeeper

  26. I was listening to that guy from the Mayo County Board his name escapes me on MWR this morning why did he keep repeating himself so many times about the situation regarding no more tickets .He would want to get a course on P.R.
    Bring all your flags and banners to McHale Park
    Roar to the top of your voices
    Sing All the Mayo Songs you know
    And let our mighty warriors
    We Behind Them
    Frighten the Donegal Team
    Be the 16th Man

  27. That article has a few inconvenient truths for some people.
    The goalkeeper issue is going nowhere

  28. The second approach is for our GK to have a bag of signals for players to decoy opposition so that we can sprint into the zone pre identified after first dragging opposition out of the way. Also McDonagh is fast and tall and can win ball that’s out in front. Also we should decoy some kickouts to 10m inside the GK range and hoof it over the top to runners. Donegal used that vs Monaghan.
    Clarke hasn’t the in motion vision of other top GKs so pre planned signals is the way to go. If an easy short range target available though, let’s use it. I agree with article Hennelly did well 2nd half v Ros and has probably improved in the air but Clarke makes uncanny saves, ones that look a certain goal. A really top keeper at positioning and decision making. I would stick with Clark but help him more with tactics. Lots of times there simply weren’t the runs. Our best kickout strategy recently devised by Buckley was v Kerry in replay where all the catchers doughnuted in the middle and sprinted to the wings. Clarke was in goal that day.

  29. Statistics applied to completely differing circumstances are as useful as a juke box in a church.

  30. Shuffly Deck – That kick out strategy at bunching in the middle and sprinting to the wings worked a treat that day against Kerry replay and actually a Galway this year. But any top team will not let that happen anymore. They’ll go zonal with the inevitable result that clarke will hoof a long loopy kick.

    A kick out is a free possession. And it’s a huge worry that we struggle to retain possession from
    It. The Kerry super 8 game stats of our retention from kick outs is skewed given that Kerry sat off in second half and let us have kick out as the game was won by half time.

  31. Donegal are a 2nd division team – a number of top class players – we have rattled them in recent years – we have home advantage – surely they are being over respected – of course we can bate them and I reckon we will – come the red and green

  32. So we are comparing a game in the league where we had a full deck vs a game in the championship where we are missing two massive ball winners and targets from goal kicks in Mattie and DOC, and add in David Moran as well for good measure?

    Here’s some chalk. Here’s some cheese.

    Good grief.

  33. Stephen clearly knows that Mayo team as players, and he clearly knows their personalities. He knows who gets rattled, he knows their favourite side, he knows their weak point… he knows everything,” McEntee is quoted saying by The Irish News.

    “That information is invaluable; that’s not information you can take off a video

  34. Yup, the same David Moran who took 40 possessions against Mayo the last time Robbie played in goal against them in the championship. That David Moran.

    Not to mention that we’ve been missing DOC, Ruane, Paddy plus a fully fit Aidan around midfield for the last several games.

  35. Wonder would Vaughan do a job on Murphy .. Physically fit and strong and put him thinking as he likes to burst forward.. To state the obvious, we will need a massive improvement on the Meath game and believe Rochford will be a huge addition to Donegals tactics … Feckin long week ..kinda feels like an All Ireland build up ..
    Oh please God let us win .. We might need a bit of luck

  36. At the risk of getting banned by WJ by continuing the never ending debate, I have to say it’s a revealing article. Taking into account the lack of Diarmuid and Mattie, who are super running targets (like Flynn and Connolly were for Dublin a few years back), Mayo still have options like Jason D, Boland, Fionn (who often plays midfield for Westport) Vaughan and Clarke just doesn’t have the range to find them.

    When you see the lack of variety in Clarke’s kickouts it shows why teams push up so aggressively, he’s very comfortably going short and that is what he wants to do.

    Anyway, it’s a huge decision for the management team. I’m sure they’ll stick with Clarke but if they want to beat Dublin they’ll have to change, in my opinion.

  37. A keeper’s kick-outs are only as good as the midfield they’re kicked to. Plenty of times against us, Kerry and more recently Cork in the second half of the super 8s, Cluxton had to kick short into the corners because the opposition midfield was winning his long kick-outs. The reference to Moran’s 40 possessions is instructive too re the argument about RH’s kick-outs. No keeper can guarantee that his kick-out will land with his team – its a 2-way process.

    For me Clarke is the best keeper in the country (better than the over hyped Cluxton who is less of a shot-stopper and weaker in the air also).

    Two questions for fellow posters:

    1) Should we be worried that it took a 35-year old to ignite our forward line against Meath?
    2) One major weakness against Meath was them running through the centre of our defence. Why did that happen and what are we going to do about it against Donegal?

  38. One thing is for sure there is no changing some vocal community members opinions. At the end of the day, we all want to is win. Given the divided opinion and debate on goalkeeper I hope who ever makes the goal keeper spot will get crowd support and backing. God’s knows of all positions either guy will need it. They will know cohort of mayo supporters routing against them which is just damaging to the cause.

  39. @ Revelino – I think you make a fair point on AoS fitness and therefore Clarkey having fewer options perhaps that in league final.
    The only other point I’ll make on the kickouts is this – Kerry did a job on AoS in Killarney by also blocking his runs and doing it in a way that the ref dis not notice or let go. There is a huge lesson for us there re the Donegal kickout, out HBs and HF need to make a physical nuisance of themseves in stopping run to receive kickouts, without nesessarily pulling jersies and giving away frees.

  40. The important stats are how many games we win with each in goal and how many goals does that goalkeeper concede. Also, how many said goals are directly the fault of the goalkeeper. They are the only stats that matter. And a little bit of research will show you who is winning that race. Comfortably at that.

  41. I can’t believe anyone would think Cluxton is over hyped He was and probably still is the best goalie this country has ever seen. Sure he makes the odd mistake and has the odd poor 10 minutes now and again but it is his ability to come through it and recover that is most impressive and his ability to think on his feet and consistently make the correct calls and choices which is so impressive. He has set the bar and others have tried to emulate him such as Beggan and Patton. David Clarke is the best shot stopper in the country for the last ten years and one of the best under a high ball. Where he doesn’t equate with Cluxton is in the restarts. Robbie Hennelly is also an excellent shot stopper, probably better with restarts than Clarke, but is weaker under the high ball and possibly does not have as good a big game temperament as Clarke. Both have been very good goalkeepers for Mayo and have played a huge role in the last ten years. The debate as regards which is the better is like that of Ronaldo and Messi. For this game I think I would stick with Clarke. I just think he might give our under pressure defence that slight bit more confidence.

  42. Excellent podcast some insightful opinions and contributions. Interesting to see Colm Keys and Billy Joe of the opinion that Donegal should have too much for us. They are two men who are well clued in so it speaks volumes about the task ahead on Saturday night. I also see in the Donegal Democrat Brian McEniff totally running us down saying “Donegal are a much better team” “ Mayo are an aeging team with no pace” I’d really love us to win and sicken him he has business interests in Mayo but certainly no love for Mayo over the years. It’s a shame Mattie Ruane And Diarmuid aren’t fully fit they are 2 guys with serious pace. My gut feeling is that Mayo will win but it will take a Herculean effort and all the Mayo supporters need to be as vocal as we were in the qualifier against Derry a few years ago that went to extra time. Anything other than the team on the pitch performing flat out and the team in the stands and we are looking at a defeat somewhere North of 5 points we really need to get stuck in from the throw in

  43. It has to be Messi for me. No, Ronaldo. No, Messi. No definitely Ronaldo. Can we not just say they are both very good and leave it at that.

  44. Poor Robbie gives me the willies when he’s in goal – agree with DIG’s summary in a lkocal paper. Has anyone in the Mayo backs the ability to clear the D zone at least? Failing that they will have to play their way out – must not give the ball away. Up Mayo

    “Hennelly cannot handle pressure and leaks preventable goals (often straight from his kickout). The piece glosses over that he was directly accountable for 1-5 in the 2016 All-Ireland final replay, a game that Mayo lost by a single point (again). He was also directly responsible for the passage of play which led to Lee Keegan’s black card, at a time when Keegan was on top of his game (having arguably scored the goal of the championship just prior).

    Over the years his kickout has been picked off time and time again for crucial goals in tight games- the Dublin replay in 2015, Galway in 2016, Dublin again in 2016, Roscommon this year. His kickouts are fine until they are decidedly not, with repeatedly disastrous consequences for Mayo over the years.

    Also, Clarke deservedly got criticism following the Kerry Super 8 tie this year, in which the Kingdom constricted his restarts. But David Moran took some 40 possessions in the previous major championship game Mayo lost to Kerry, back in 2014. Who was in goal that day? One Rob Hennelly.

    Once Seamus O’Shea came on and started offering an option at centre-field, Clarke’s stats improved quite a bit.

    Mayo may need another option from restarts the next day out, but RH is not the answer and never has been

  45. There are 14 other places Up for Grab in a Gaelic football team Apart from Goalkeeper…My Mind is Set as regards who I think is the better Goalkeeper…. Speculation always grows from about Thursday onwards as to Team Selection… I feel certain as to who will be named as Number 1…. from Number’s 2-15 & equally important from Number’s 16-26 there is plenty of wriggle room…. Regardless I will be glad to FULLY Support whoever represents Mayo in every position on the field come 6 PM on Saturday!

  46. Lots of commentary here about David Moran’s 40 possessions in a game we lost to Kerry when god and all sundry know that was not the real reason Kerry won that day. Also conflating an opposition midfielders possessions to a keepers kickouts is a false narrative, you need to analyze which of the keepers kickouts went to that player if you have to make that connection. No one has that stat yet somehow Moran having 40 possessions in 2014 means Robbie gets lambasted, when he has all the possession from our kickouts in Killarney it’s the midfield that’s to blame. For what it’s worth, Aido has 36 possessions against Kerry in Killarney 2 weeks ago yet we lost by 10 points.

    If we are going to compare the keepers can we at least compare them by the same set of metrics.

  47. Agree with some posters that Donie could well do a job with Murphy. He’s not normally a marker but he’s big enough and athletic enough to make himself a nuisance. Could even try get Murphy chasing him the other way.

  48. FBD, that’s always the way it is with the goalkeeper debate in this county. Lots of people dont want to hear ANY criticism of David Clarke, no matter how reasonable it is, even when the whole country and its mother can see his deficiencies. Meanwhile, Hennelly is lambasted for every mistake. When Clarke makes a mistake, it’s Aidan O’Shea or whoever’s fault, when Hennelly makes a mistake he should never play for Mayo again. And on and on it goes.

  49. Yes the 40 possessions stat is irrelevant, the one that matters is kickouts. I think we actually did better in that replay because Tom P played. The problem the first day was Barry Moran the best fielder of all was not mobile enough.
    Let’s leave Goalie tactics and personnel to management, we’ve worn out the debate too often here. I think Horan might need to throw out the script a bit here because of the insider knowledge Rochford has. Kevin Mc can be put off his game by persistent fouling of opponents especially if unpunished. Less likely in HF line where ref can see the fouls better. I’d have him CHF / sweeper as Fionn is wing for now being a rookie and Jason / Fergal are right footed.

  50. I can see a certain amount of caution exercised by both teams giving match ups a chance to settle in the early stages. After that weaknesses will be exploited. Very important for management to react quickly to any match up that’s not working.
    So who picks up MM, he loves about the place, imo, AOS the only one with the physical strength to hold him up. Might just suit O’Shea as Murphy doesn’t play at the same high intensity as in the past…Such an intelligent footballer …

  51. Again & again , I will ask the Question , where is Brian Reape ??? Strong & powerful on the Ball . Proven goal scorer , component free taker . Surely to God he needs to get a decent chance . Maybe he’s injured ??? Do not tell me he’s not good enough because that’s rubbish

  52. According to the Munster GAA stats from the 2014 replay, Mayo won just 12 out of 30 kickouts that day in Limerick.

    Contrast that with Kerry’s 15 from 28, a clear win for the Kingdom there.

    And no, no-one’s blaming Hennelly entirely for that, but this stat also shows that Clarke is not uniquely prone to having his kickout pressured against one of the most effective midfielders in the game, on his day. That’s David Moran in case anyone’s unclear (I actually understated his influence in my initial post, turns out he had 47 possessions in Limerick that day).

    That’s before we get into the fact that Hennelly concedes more goals on average than Clarke, and that Mayo have a better win ratio when Clarke is in goal.

    And that’s before we get into RH’s lamentable record of conceding preventable goals in big games. This is a big game.

    We wouldn’t be here at all if it weren’t for Big Dave’s big saves against Down, Armagh, Galway and Meath.

  53. Why is this wheeled out over and over again dreamy? Nobody, nobody on this forum believes DC is immune to criticism. In fact as soon as one of his kickouts goes astray, this place goes into meltdown and we are back with the “debate” again.

    The reason another poster referenced the 40 possessions that day was to simply put Clarke’s v Kerry into context. In other words – The alternative is NOT, repeat, NOT better than what we already have.

    “Lots of people dont want to hear ANY criticism of David Clarke, no matter how reasonable it is”. – This is blatantly untrue and a cheap way to try and win an argument.

  54. The current 2 man full forward line is Cillian and Darren Coen
    The 2 replacements are Andy and Carr
    Which of the 4 would Reape displace ?
    He is a proven goal scorer and free taker at championship inter county level is he ?

    There is obviously a reason 3 sets of management teams have not selected him. I’ll trust them

  55. Our biggest failure is turnovers. Time and time again out attacks break down and we get punished. Which of course leads to more kickouts. The ball needs to go dead as often as possible at opposition end. Which leads to opposition having to deal with kickouts. Less kickouts Clarke has to take the better.

  56. If one googles the match report of the 2014 replay against Kerry on the Munster GAA site, you’ll see that Mayo won just 12 out of 30 of Hennelly’s kickouts that day. David Moran took 47 possessions.

    Kerry won 15 out of their 28 kickouts.

    Now, not all of Moran’s possessions obviously are from restarts, but the latter stat does demonstrate that those dunking on Clarke for the Kerry match are overlooking that Hennelly’s restarts would not necessarily have been any better.

    Particularly given that the Irish Times article is flawed, considering it compares a game in which we have all of our first-choice players around the middle of the field against a game in which we have few (arguably none, given that AOS and Donal Vaughan weren’t fully fit).

    Fokker out.

  57. In fairness, the gkeeper debate is moot because Clarke is and will remain first choice.

    If Higgins plays (and I suspect he will) then I hope he goes to the HF line.

    As I said previously though we have to ensure we are a lot less vulnerable when teams run at our defence.

  58. Imo posters woould be doing everyone a favour by leaving it to management to sort a kickining out strategy that Improves our chances of retaining possession. I expect an improvement in that department.
    I agree with a previous poster, in many ways this is our all ireland final. Except its in mchale where the atmosphere will be electric.

  59. @Sean McMahon. I think the fact that James Horan drafted in two u20’s into the 26 says a lot about how he views Brian Reape.

  60. What’s the point of having a discussion board at all if it’s not to discuss the team, tactics, selection etc. then Ontheditch?

    Sure let’s leave everything to the management team and delete this site altogether 🙁

  61. Its just a discussion goes on and on in circles… Same points trashed and retrashed going nowhere
    Yes, I’m all for a discussion on tactics

  62. @Diehard… I don’t believe that Saturdays Match day 26 is known, at least not by the General Public… Andy Moran was not on the 26 for Galway Match in Limerick… Now everybody knows the quality of player Andy Moran is, including James Horan… So 26 panel will be named, and you can bet your bottom dollar that there’s?going to be some pretty close call’s , especially and hopefully if a number of players are sufficiently recovered enough from Injurys to be available for a starting place and equally important nowadays a place on the bench!

  63. Sean Burke maybe Rochford will tog out himself the way your talking.

    I’d be a lot more worried if Mcguiness was in the other corner

  64. Fantastic podcast. Rob Murphy is an absolutely outstanding interviewer.Billy Joe’s contribution was superb. Thank you all.

    This could be the last home game and possibly last game ever for some members of this great team. Maybe as many as three or four of them?It is only right that they be celebrated – no matter the result.

    If some do retire I’d love if we dedicated podcasts to those guys individually and as a team, With input from everyone whose lives they have made better.

    It’s important to leave our personal disappointment aside ( if we lose) and take time and give proper thanks to these true heroes.

    TBH we are up against it in this game because of key men missing.
    Donegal are playing an exciting brand of football and they score with ease. In theory we have the tools to neutralize Donegals danger men. But they have a consistent system that they play to and they do it effortlessly. They are a little Dublin like in that way.

    Make no mistake , if this game was three weeks from now , in Croke Park ,i think we’d win handily with Diarmuid and Matthew Ruane in good form.

    To be this unlucky with injuries once again at a key moment means that once again we are asking these men to go to the deep well. And I’ve no doubt they will give a proper performance. But Donegal will need to both be neutralized and knocked off their confidence game for us to win. It’s a really big stretchy ask. It’s likely our All Ireland this year.

    The outcome of the game should not matter because it could well be the last time ever we will see these players in a championship game in Castlebar. Ever !

    So , expect the Mayoest of Mayo performances. A mixture of Ultimate grit, cage fighting , sublime passages of play , fluky goals , failure to cut the throat when asked, and a strong dollop of farce.

    No matter what ,as fans, let’s show our grace and class by giving them a proper thank you. They certainly deserve it.

    This team has meant so much to me and my family these last 9 years that anything I can do to honor and memorialize that, I will do it. The quality of work on this blog and in the podcasts is simply unmatched. What better way to memorialize them ?

  65. Vaughan has been our worst player over the last 2 matches and he should be picking up Murphy?
    Vaughan has given great service to Mayo and gave his all for the jersey but he’s been a mile off the pace last couple of games. a couple of Meath kickouts came out to his man and he was 3-4 yards behind him.

    for me Diarmuid or Durcan should pick up Murphy

  66. Well said Swahili.
    It’s so emotional even thinking about it.
    These guys have given us all so much in last decade whatever about tactics etc.
    We need to show them huge respect and thanks sat evening. How could we ever thank them really??
    Best of luck to all and l hope it will be the loudest Mayo chant we will ever hear in McHale Park as part of that thank you.

  67. I stand by what I said, Mayo Mark. Because it’s the truth. Hennelly gets hung out to dry by almost everyone over his mistakes while there are still some who will shout till their last breath that Clarke isn’t a problem and that it’s actually midfield.

  68. “Centerfield”

    I was just typing what I was reading a quote from mcantee . But don’t let that stop you joining in with the everything Sean Burke says in here has to be met with stern opposition .

  69. It’s gonna be hard for Diarmuid to pick up Murphy seen as he is out injured
    Durkan isn’t strong enough and we need him in the half back line anyway driving forward playing his own game
    All things considered I’d say it will be Keegan
    That’s of course if Horan decides to do anything and not just go gung ho again……

  70. But that’s because Clarke doesn’t have that epic
    reel of blunders that Hennelly does. And you know it.

    I think David Clarke may well be the GOAT in terms of Mayo goalkeepers, at least in my lifetime. He’s certainly the best shot stopper we’ve ever had and probably the best gaelic goalie of all time when it comes to saving penalties.

    Anyone who thinks Clarke is a problem to this team, especially relevant to his direct rival for the Number 1 jersey… I’ll leave it there.

  71. Isn’t it past time to put the Goalkeeper debate to bed… I can’t think of anything else to be said that hasn’t already been said.. and of course plenty that was said was unfair to both Player’s. .

  72. Swahili…the best post of the week. You nailed it!! Its the team and us. We will be some combination on Saturday.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *