Easter arrangements

Easter bunny and eggs

Photo: The Journal

This doesn’t occur all that frequently but this year the Easter holiday period is combining with a busy time from a footballing point of view. How busy the latter will be won’t, of course, be determined until the full-time whistle blows at MacHale Park on Sunday afternoon at which point our 2015 League campaign will either be over (most likely with our Division One status preserved for another year) or else we’ll be contemplating a semi-final appearance at Croke Park the following Sunday.

I’m downing tools over Easter and the plans we’ve made for the break don’t include being at MacHale Park at 3pm on Sunday. As previously indicated, though, I have a guest contributor lined up to do the match report on the Donegal game and I’ll be online that evening to get that uploaded and to fire up the MOTM poll then as well.

I won’t, though, be doing the usual Monday round-up of match reports and won’t, to be honest, be all that active on here for most of the following week either, even if we do manage to qualify for the semis. Should we make it to HQ for the play-offs, however, I’ll be there on the day, though I agree that there’s little point making plans at this stage for such an eventuality.

Enjoy the Easter break, y’all, and the best of luck to the lads on Sunday.

37 thoughts on “Easter arrangements

  1. Happy Easter WJ, I expect the usual arrangement applies re tickets, anyone having to purchase them should be buying them today to save the €5 @maigheoabu

  2. Hennelly is getting some comments which to me appear unfair. He made one slip up in the Final against Dublin but in the same game he made several super saves on certain goals. In the same game several other players made mistakes which lead to scores for example Cafferkey gifted a point to Dublin. Higgins last sunday gifted a goal to Cork. Players will make some mistakes even Cluxton got himself sent off against Mayo last year
    I think Hennelly has the best pair of hands he catches quite a lot of ball over the crossbar

  3. Happy Easter to all, and Willie Joe, I have to say, I like the choice of pictures you use in the different sections.
    Anyway, I fancy Mayo to win on Sunday and hope they get Dublin in a league semi in croker, just to set that result straight or at least straighter. Any word on gibbons, Carolan or regan yet? I watched a rerun of some of the games involving Carolan,i hope he gets a chance again, his running and power are a good asset to Mayo.

  4. When you see all the names that aren’t starting its kind of reassuring for the coming campaign . Best of luck to the team on Sunday but I’m firmly in the Horan camp as regards the league – Meh ! More important is individuals putting up hands for a championship place. Looks like its gonna be a lovely day for breaking eggs – Happy Easter all !

  5. Tyrone v Kerry is the live natch on TG4 on Sunday with differed coverage of the Mayo game after. Two interesting games to watch on Sunday night hopefully

  6. I think myself it’s between Clarke and Hennelly. I think Rob was excellent last year, all year long. He was criticized for going long with the kick outs in the replayed semi final but that’s a management decision, not his. He’s one of the best shotstoppers in the country and he has caught balls going over the bar on numerous occasions. He also the most likely to score a long range free, as he almost did in the semi against Kerry (oh, how I wish he had made it that day.) Clarke was superb in 2012 all year long. To me, it’s between these two. O’Malley is good but not as good as the two others on the basis of what I’ve seen the last few years.

  7. Maybe we should keep all three and play all of them, if we’re leading by five points with a few minutes to go in an A I semi final ( Nephin for next manager)

  8. While I don’t go with your idea of playing all three goalkeepers together, Nephin, I do believe all three should be kept on the panel for the championship. As in 2013 you never know what might happen during the course of the campaign. Of course only two could be on a match panel but that is not a reason for dropping one of them entirely. There will be a number of others in the training panel who will not get on the matchday panels as well.

  9. Andy D Of course I didn’t expect you or anyone else to go along with my ridiculous idea, but as you say, in 2013 , without Hennelly , where were we. We might have to go begging to any one of three doors yet . That said an extra forward sub , would usually be more valuable than a third keeper and the panel numbers are limited.Clarke would be my favourite , but in fairness. Rob answered the call when needed.

  10. There is not, as far as I know, any set limit of the numbers in training panels for the championship but generally most teams have 30 – 32. There is a limit of 26 who can be in the matchday panel for any game so 4 – 6 will miss out, even in an All Ireland final. So I do not see what disadvantage having three ‘keepers in the training panel is.
    Incidentally I understand that under new regulations the 26 have to be named by, I think, Thursday and that going outside that 26 is not permitted. So waiting for a last minute fitness test will have a definite disadvantage. With 6 subs permitted a manager has at best only 10 outfield players to select subs from and if one or more turns out to be unfit at he last minute he is very restricted.
    I am also very surprised that the GPA have accepted the restriction of matchday panels to 26 when normally 30 – 32 are training. In my opinion these 4 – 6 excluded players are being very unfairly treated. I am pretty sure that there is no limit on the number of county board officials who may be hangers on of county teams. How many are needed????

  11. Enjoy the break WJ with your family and thanks again for keeping us so up to date on all of the happenings in Mayo GAA. Thanks to all of the posters on here as well who make this such a great site!

  12. Finances would also determine the size of your panel. Every player on the panel has to get expenses, be fed, medically cared for etc., so I would have no doubt it all adds up. The panel size would be a point of friction between management and boards in every county I’d be guessing (with the exception of Dublin obviously).

  13. When your stuck in cliche land and hard up for an angle, pull out the Mayo file and let the stereotypical shit flow.

    Today’s Examiner has chosen the redemption of Kevin Keane as a bone to gnaw on. I am a Keane supporter from the off, asking him to mark Murphy in 2012 was the only option because no one else was able to. Not providing defensive cover for the lad and a failure to close down Lacey led to that opening goal.

    Fogerty the Examiner scribe adjudged that Keane recovered due his then relative young age, 22. My view of that matter is that Keane was scapegoated unfairly , not being brought on a year later when Cunniffe got injured and we threw our plan out the window by hauling a centre forward back.

    In contrasting Keanes Renaissance , the writer unfairly and wrongly uses Dermot Geraghty. He stated that Geraghty in ’04 never recovered from his final. In addition Flanagans 1997 final was also tossed in. Strangely in continuing about Geraghty, the name Nallen was slotted in. I am confused.

    But one thing I am not confused about are the facts. Geraghty the following season lined out in the League S/F v Armagh and AIF Championship quarter final v Kerry. In 2006 he won another connacht medal and played the AIF v The Kingdom once more. In fact such a tenacious battler was he that he was first choice number 2 in Horans first championship game of 2011. Geraghty was a year younger than Keane in ’04. To say he “never recovered” is rubbish, indeed six days later he played in an U21 AIF.

    Flanagan was a veteran in ’97. More than likely he was 35/36. So in his case ’97 was a natural end for a great servant. Maybe I’m losing it and getting fussed over trivia but sure as hell if I was Geraghty I wouldn’t feel happy with a throwaway line dismissing an honourable career. Just sayin like!

  14. Hennelly’s mistake, if it can be so described, was in being a split second late to the punch. Colm O;Rourke pointed this out on the following Sunday in the Sunday Independent saying that Hennelly could have taken both men and ball. He could have apologised later to Cafferkey and Brogan would be a little more wary of invading his space afterwards.
    Hennelly’s action was typical of a goalkeeper who has not complete faith in his full back.This was identified in 2012 final when Keane was moved to the edge of the square. Thus Keane and Hennelly have become the scapegoats for a problem that was never properly addresssed. I am open to persuasion on the present solution.
    As for the kicks out, if your midfield is dominant the ball can be kicked anywhere and if the opposite is the case, there is npowhere the kick out can be placed which will guarantee possession. If Parsons continues to stay fit then we can bank on at least parity or better and if not, then we do not have the clean fielders in either wing back or forward positions to consider varying the kicks out.
    My personal opinion is that Hennelly is our number one goalkeeper. He is an excellent shot stopper, by far the best under a dropping ball and has the most imposing physical presencde of the three. I believe he would have prevented Hiurley’s goal last week and he also gives a reasonable option for 45s and long distance frees.

  15. Freak weather conditions down here at the moment will probably affect the match tomorrow. Its actually warm, sunny and no wind. Very strange. ????

  16. Not strange at all….this glorious weather was promised during the week. Great to have it for Easter and the big game tomorrow. Happy Easter everyone and safe travelling over the weekend…hopefully we will be on the road to Croker nxt Sunday.

  17. Final score in the Connacht U21 final: Roscommon 3-14 Galway 3-11

    It’ll be interesting to see how Roscommon will get on in the All-Ireland series.

  18. Way too much chat on the goalkeeper position. Our concerns are up front. That’s that.

    We’ve not won an All Ireland in the past 3 years cos our forwards havent been good enough. We have blitzed he odd team along the way but when it counted our forwards didn’t score enough. If you took out cillian we would be average at best.

    Why is such a big footballing county not producing free scoring forwards?? Galway have them by the bucket full and the rossies have young murtagh and enda smyth coming thru (better than anything we’ve produced [bar cillian] in years).

  19. Mayonaze to say it’s the scoring rate thats the critical issue is ridiculous

    Against Dublin in 2013 we scored 17, 19 against Kerry in first match last year and 20 in normal time in the second match. Those totals should be enough to win any match. Issue was that 6 goals were conceeded in those matches

  20. True we haven’t found a Cormac Costello, Kilkenny or Dean Rock, burned Ronaldson does resemble the McHughs. That said I expect Andy to continue his post injury improvement and make thesummer team ahead of Freeman, Kirby and Ronaldson. I just think he’s a big game player and can pull out that extra 10% added to his experience. Young DOC might get starting position ahead of Alan D for the summer. We can’t afford 2 playmakers in FF line come summer.

  21. Mayonaze,
    Since we kicked so few wides last week in Cork, bar efforts in the second half taken by the strong wind, could we not put it down to our midfield and half backs not giving good ball in to the forward line?

    Even without Cillian, we have seen both this year and over the past couple of years that players like Doc, Kevin McLoughlin, Ronaldson and Dillon can score 2 or 3 points per game if they get the ball in their possession.

  22. I agree with John Cuffe. Geraghty got a raw deal in this one. It smells of lasy journalism. Something to fill in the blank space before the real championship stuff start

  23. Centrefield.natural scoring forwards a major problem.take the dublin 2013 final how many points did they kick from distance in the 2nd half of that game when it mattered! We do have the ability to put up big scores in certain games but in other games we do be like a rugby team when we get to the opposition 45 and what I mean by this is passing the ball over and back in a straight line and getting no where.we need other go to men than cillian.

  24. Have to agree with Centrefield. I have preached for years that the goals you leak create a problem for the forwards. They have to score the equal of those goals first, just to stand still, whereas if there were no goals leaked we would have an advantage.

  25. While good to see debate continues whether on No1 spot or other issues let’s not all forget this is the first site we check up on mon morning and in week leading up to games for up to date news. Thanks to WJ for all the effort and he and family deserve a break. Am sure it takes a lot of time to keep it moving along and thank you. As the song says ” let’s hear it for the man”. Oh and not forgetting tomoro cmon Mayo!!

  26. Match day finally arrived and its going to be a sunny one B-) : As was the demand from supporters last Sunday we need to see a full and complete backlash to the childlike performance against Dublin here on our home turf last month…..and unlike the improved but ultimately failed attempt in Pairc Ui Rinn last week, this time we need to see in front of a home crowd that this team still has what it takes to close a big game out. Best of luck lads…we’ll be there cheering ye on all the way.

  27. Look I agree with the forwards being an issue but how fixable is that in rhe short term maybe if Andy can recover it will help us.

    The goal concession is the bigger issue though and can be improved by a far more cynical approach by our keeper and defence and getting more bodies back to help the FB line

  28. Yes still don’t have a scary set of forwards with impact subs. If Parsons continues to play well which Is suspect he will then I think we should persist with AOS in the forwards but give him licence to roam deep and win ball for the team especially in games where we’re struggling. Like Murphy does for Donegal. He gives us an awful lot more up front. Sweeney could be a good one for last 10 or 15 of championship games as he has pace and a knack of scoring goals. Loftus may be the star we need when he graduates injury free but could be 2 years away. Young DOC has promise and is a great worker and may in a few years be the running midfielder but as a forward needs to work on the simple bread and butter points with his instep left & right as opposed to Ciaran Mcdonald type points which require huge skill at the top level and deflate a team if there are better options & he misses. He has skills to perfect high percentage shooting from all angles but would like to see it this year. With Ronaldson, if he continues to get the nod ahead of Mickey C & Andy then we need him playing a vulture role receiving ball off a big man especially if Dillon on the pitch. IMO only one of these 2 should be on the pitch they way we play now. I would only like young COS in FF line for now (only got last game on Radio but he seems to make a mistake too many out the field). If Kirby doesn’t work, maybe try him as plan B. He’s 2 footed and fast and being an O’ Shea can field high ball. Mickey C is good but not marquee, could do damage off a big man. Can win own ball,… only young DOC and COS and Sweeney seem to have an extra yard but even those maybe fall short of an Eamonn Wallace or Paul Kerrigan. Kevin Mc maybe the exception but probably need him outfield, likewise Zippy needed in backs. Is their any 11 sec 100m forward in Club football in the County right now.

  29. Best of luck màyo hope they win this could be a blanket defence game today safe travelling today .

  30. Happy Easter and safe travelling everyone.. A note of caution, Donegal won’t b coming here to make up the numbers, with or without Michael Murphy, they will have a game plan in mind.. The best type of training before an Ulster Championship is more football and like everyone else they will like the idea of a run out in Croke Parke. There fitness levels are very high at this stage in the year, so if we are to win this the lads are going to have to work hard for it. Would sun cream and glasses be the order of the day.. its funny how u can get frozen and scalded in equal measure in McHale Park. Cmon Mayo

  31. Mark Regan ex minor is likely 11 second 100 meters as he was representing Ireland at 110 metre hurdles. So he is likely quickest in county.

  32. Going to my first Mayo game since 2009 (due to being in Australia).
    Looking forward to it. Have had a busy morning already with a cow calving, hope it’s a good omen. Want to see some fine football now, with the emphasis on the foot part, none of this hand passing seafóid. Come on Mayo!!!

  33. Enjoy it, Erris Head – with the weather and the huge crowd expected to be there, you’ve picked a good one for your comeback. Hope the performance is a good one too.

  34. 12 wides today. Further evidence of our weakness up front. Anyone trying to argue against the fact that our inability to score when it matters, really??!

    A poor league.

    Rossies promoted. Anyone clued into underage football knows the balance is shifting in Connacht…. Worrying.

    Why can’t we produce proper forwards?? Anyone know why?

  35. Now Centrefield where do our problems lie after today! As I said time and time again no natural scoring forwards! Bar cillian! We must had 65-70% possession!

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