Evening start up in Newry

I’m hours behind everyone else coming to this, I know, but a combination of work and U14 football commitments this afternoon and evening has meant that I’m not that long in the door and only now catching up on the match scheduling decision and the reaction to it.

So, our Round 2 qualifier tie with Down has been fixed for Páirc Esler in Newry on Saturday, 22nd June, with a 7pm throw-in.

It’s fairly clear from the reaction in the comments that many are unhappy – and I can see why – with this scheduling decision. Anyone planning a roundtrip from Mayo on the day will still be on the road home after midnight so it’s definitely not a fixture that will suit everybody.

So nobody should feel guilty about not being able to make it. Or be told by others that they’re moaning or that they’re not proper fans or whatever.

Sometimes the best reaction to a stupid decision like this is to have a good rant – Lord knows, I’ve been fulminating in my own house for more than two whole years at this stage about Brexit and Trump – so if anyone wants a rant about Newry at 7pm then fire ahead.

It won’t change anything, of course – Championship fixtures, not just qualifier matches, are commonly fixed nowadays for 7pm on Saturdays and we’re not the first county whose supporters are being asked to go the extra mile and more in this respect. Last year, for example, Donegal were made to line out at Croke Park at the same time for their Super 8s match against Dublin, in what was an equally egregious scheduling decision as the one we’re now facing.

Ultimately, we have to suck it up. Each individual supporter has to make up his or her mind on what to do and doesn’t need to be lectured by others if this means giving the game a miss. Significant numbers of fans from different counties are voting with their feet in this Championship and it won’t be a surprise if the famed Mayo support turns out to be a good deal smaller at Páirc Esler the next evening than it’s been at so many other venues in recent years.

I wasn’t able to get either to New York or to the Roscommon game this year, missing both because I’d other things in the diary both weekends. Such is life. Newry at 7pm on the 22nd suits me fine – the drive up from here on the northside of Dublin is a bit over an hour – and the diary is free so I’ve no reason not to go.

It’s clear, though, that many others aren’t in the same boat for this one. That’s the way it goes – those of us who are aiming to be there that evening will simply have to shout that bit louder.

121 thoughts on “Evening start up in Newry

  1. It’s the GAA. What do we expect? An afternoon throw in on a Sunday? Zero chance. These people organisung fixtures couldn’t give a toss about Mayo or it’s supporters.

    All I know is I’ll be there and it’s longer from here to Newry than most parts of Mayo. At the end of the day most if not all hard-core Mayo support will travel. Getting home after midnight? So what, unless youre working Sunday morn which I assume most of us aren’t. And if it’s that bad, get someone else to drive and nod off en route home.

    Otherwise, just get on with it. Get up there, bring a flag (not nearly enough of you do!!) and support the team. There are much better things to complain about.

  2. The main thing to remember I suppose is that we all want the same thing. That begins in Newry. Hopefully, and I believe we can and will win.

    Jesus, the wait in the qualifiers is horrible. It lends a long time to chew over why and how we ended up here again.

    Whether James was right or James was wrong, at some point has to be left aside, for a while anyway.

    I believe that we do have an exceptionally strong panel this year and I also believe that we played some brilliant football in the league.
    The team is a little different from previous years and some of the new recruits now have to prove they can also win do or die championship games.

    I’ve said already that I think this is our biggest game since the 2017 final. A big performance from the managment and team could really light the fire under thede lads.

    I would never want to be a manager or for that matter a referee. When things don’t go well I wouldn’t fancy been a player either.

    The exciting thing is that nobody really knows what to expect, unless of course your a Dub. By the way Dub fans, congratulations on winning your 5 in a row later in the Summer, and sure fuck it while I’m at it, congratulations on winning the 6 in a row next year. Yea should have the average starting age down to about 12 in time for the 2021 championship.

    Yea might have Croke Park but we have Knock. It’s all home matches for us if it’s a visit to Knock yea are after. Put that in your fucken pipes and smoke it.

  3. Bloody hell lads what if Ireland declares war on Scotland, we could end up as P.O.Ws. Wish I was at home for Christmas. 7pm sounds a bit fishy to me.

  4. not much worse than the base case when you’re flying over for a match but very frustrating timing for almost everyone. I’m definitely over for this one as once you start getting a weeks notice to fly over for matches you’re often priced out. I’d still expect a big crowd as always but a real shame they’re having to deal with this!

  5. One option is to drive from Mayo but then stay with someone in Dublin. 4 hrs is quite a journey post 9pm.

  6. I have to say in my opinion since we moved to the Super 8 format, the whole competition regarding scheduling has been a disaster, particularly when it comes to GAA coverage. I mean you couldn’t make it up really, the GAA agrees a long term contract with RTE and Sky and then a year later changes the format but doesn’t change the amount of games on tv. They are living in the past, they need games,games,games on tv . Sky have opted out of showing any qualifier in the 2nd round so they can show a game later in the competition, it’s baffling really , when other sports are dividing up tv packages etc the GAA is going the otherway and hiding the games away. Have to say I hope crowds for the championship are down again this year, its the only way we might see proper, coherent thought from headquarters down.

  7. Down are playing Meath earlier in the day in the Christy Ring Final which is televised. If game was at 5 some Down supporters would not be back from Croke Park. If game was moved to Sunday winners might be looking at a 6 day turnaround.

  8. its no anti-mayo, dublin media led conspiracy as some on here seem to be suggesting. The paranoia on here is hilarious at times
    It sucks but its not unusual, a lot of other counties getting shafted similarly.

    I myself am based in dublin so can nip up quite easily but certainly wouldnt judge anyone for not making the pilgrimage from Mayo for it, i know i certainly wouldnt be doing it if i was based in Mayo

    Besides, gonna need to save a few pound for the super 8’s 😉

  9. Fixing our game at 7.00 to facilitate the Down hurling fans is not good enough. Our match should have been fixed for 3 and let them decide which game they want to go to

  10. If our game was on earlier the gaa would basically be giving the 2 fingers to the Nicky Rackard cup final. Any casual Down fans would choose the football over the hurling. At least now they have the option to see both.

    Not ideal for us but we can’t expect the GAA to bend over backwards for a round 2 qualifier. I hope a line is drawn under this now and it doesn’t develop into a Newbridge or Limerick 2014 storm. If you’ll excuse the cliche, the 1st qualifier game is tricky. Players will have 4 weeks to stew over the Roscommon defeat so there will no doubt be some pre game nerves.

  11. Gradually the outcry about the venue will dissipate and we can look ahead to the game. Supporters seem to be divided into three groups. 1 If we can’t beat this lot we don’t deserve to be talking about Super 8 or Sam etc. 2 A handy game for us that we are sure to win.(Seem to remember the same being said about Galway 2016,Kildare last year and Ross a few weeks ago. 3 A tricky but winnable game We have a good team but Down have an excellent tradition and first qualifier games have often proved tricky for us defeats v Westmeath, Fermanagh, Derry, and worst of all Longford and hard fought wins v Derry and Fermanagh. I. would be of the Number 3 variety. This was not the best but certainly not the worst possible draw. We were not as bad as people made out v Ross despite the fact that only about 5 of our guys played up to standard. Four weeks will have elapsed so we will be a month fitter and hopefully some lads back from injury. But Down are a dangerous beast. Even when not going well they can spring a surprise as they did to Monaghan 2 years ago. Tally is a shrewd if negative coach who will know of Mayo’s difficulties with blanket defence. So an intriguing game in prospect. Let’s just go and win the bloody thing and get up and running again.

  12. The only positive of this draw is that we’re not playing in MacHale. Still think wer in for a hell of a battle. Id be starting Boyler for this one, horses for courses an all that.

  13. I live in Galway and will be travelling the M6/M1 route. It will be 3 hours each way. This is going to be a real test of stamina for the Mayo support and I expect a big turnout as usual. At least it’s on Saturday and a win will shorten the journey home. A loss is unthinkable. After last year and Newbridge and the recent loss to Roscommon Mayo can not take a backward step for the duration of this match. Nothing else matters. Thoughts of the Super 8s are for another day. I expect a ferocious start from Mayo. Quick ball inside and tackling like demons. A lot of players have to prove themselves after lack luster displays the last day. The sideline is also under pressure and changes need to be made quicker if required. We can use 5 subs and they should be used! Down have nothing to lose as they have drawn a big dog and beating us would be a huge evening’s work for them. If we beat them out the gate it will be seen in the context of div 1 v div 3. A one point win will leave us open to the usual crap from the experts. I believe we will win by 5+ points and get the train back on track. See you all in Pairc Esler!

  14. KM79, I don’t think they’ll give up a home game against a team like Mayo, its surely worth 3 or 4 points to them but I believe Mayo will take them on this occasion, it will be tight, Mayo by 2.

  15. I have read lots and lots of comments on the blog about how Mayo should set up against Down and how we will win the game. Some good points and some crazy opinions to be fair. In fairness I don’t think there is to many Mayo men that can say they have seen Down in the heat of Championship already this year besides @Willie Joe and Rob Murphy. I think what words these men say should be listened to very keenly.

  16. Maybe they should get onto James and his backroom team to pass on valuable information. Keep up the good work lads.

  17. @Mayo Focus what are you trying to say in your previous post when you mentioned me? I’m here to talk football 10 days out from a very important game for our Mayo team and your on here slagging off my user name. Grow up.

  18. Norris I was aware of that ……that’s why I said to play it at Croke Park as a double bill with their hurlers…….anyway I was only joking!

  19. I think it’s extremely harsh on Mayo families with young kids wanting to travel to the game. I would completely understand why people may stay at home for this one. Driving 3-4 hours on a Saturday night to get home after midnight is a hell of a commitment. I’m aware of the fact that the Down hurlers are playing on Saturday too but I can’t help but think it could have been scheduled better than this.

    Anyway, it’s grand for me. It’s a short spin up the road from Dublin. I’m confident of a victory but we will have to be on our game from the off. It is certainly a potential banana skin, but I would be of the view that if we can’t get over this hurdle, then we have no business considering ourselves as All Ireland contenders. They are a Division 3 side and it’s time for this team to lay down a marker for the rest of the season.

  20. Oh Mary, the CCCC are so full of Shite. Organising ‘Throw In’s’ by both day and by Night. They seem to care about Brexit, Swing Gate and Rockall. But not One Hoot do they give for the Mayo Fan’s at all. At least, when we asked them ,7pm we were retold. Sure they are no better men to pluck a Goose that was once Gold. It’s a Long way to, Páirc Esler in the town of Newry. Not too far from where the Dark Mourne sweeps ‘Down’ to the Sea!

  21. Prenty blaming the PSNI who he claims wouldn’t allow a sat afternoon game in any case due to shoppers!

    Anyone know if Pairc Esler has ever hosted a championship game on a sat afternoon ?

  22. Will there be any injury updates or ideally a fitness update ? t would be nice to know the full list of fit players so we could be dreaming about starting 15’s and the men to coming on.

  23. Yes.

    Gaa Match attendance figures are very accurate.

    They send a steward, who has been on the piss since mass time around the ground to count the number of legs there are inside the gates.

    They then divide this number by two.

    Clause 92c allows the final attendance number to be adjusted downward due to the drunken condition of the count steward.

    If the steward encounters an attendant with 3 legs the 3 legged attendant is given 4 minutes to cough up another 50 % of the gate charge.

    If money is not forthcoming, then per rule 147g

    “the drunken steward is well within his rights to eject the 3 legged offender out the front gate”.

  24. I was chatting to a good friend of mine that was at the challenge game in ennis. He observed some big tacital moves with some big names. Some very interesting things.

  25. @quietman, we played Clare in Ennis I take it? Interesting team for a challenge match.

    We’ll beat Down.

    Up Mayo (always)

  26. Am less concerned by the number of fans in attendance than by which Mayo will show up against Down. We’re definitely the most unpredictable and inconsistent Division One team – on our day we’re better than Dublin (they fear us more than all other teams) but if the stars are not aligned then Kildare, Roscommon and Galway roll us over and we were lucky to hold off Tipperary (who were ahead of us at the break) in 2018. What’s the explanation – confidence? Some players like Cillian and Andy are reliable, but so many others score high on flakiness scale or just go missing?

  27. I know this might not be a popular thing to say but I think this thing of giving home advantage to division 3 or 4 teams is a nonsense. All qualifier games should be in neutral venues – it’s the fairest way for all supporters. The qualifiers should also be seeded – how is it fair that Offaly or Sligo will get further in the championship than Down or Mayo even though either of those will get slaughtered in the next round? If it’s about giving them a better chance these teams should be in a second tier championship. Down are actually a good deal better than most of the other teams in the draw (bar Monaghan) and their division 3 status belies where they are really at. This lack of consistency in the football competition is maddening especially when we see how hurling has got it together. But it’s all grand because the Dubs keep winning and sure isn’t that all that matters to the GAA?

  28. @mayo13bg yes ennis. Cillian o connor played. Down will be defensive. One thing i will say is we should be looking for a goal from the throwin. Its the mist likely time to score one versus such heavily defence minded teams. Its the only time they will have six behind the ball. Aidoxi hasnt lost many throwins this season so likely hood of having possession from the start. I am having 2 bets for the game. Mayo to score a goal in first 5 mins. And aidoxi motm. Hes flying this year and down have a poor midfield.

  29. Musha aren’t we badly off gallivanting up to Newry for a match shouldn’t the Grab all Assoc just hand Sam to the Dubs now and be done with it

  30. I think there is something fundamentally wrong with the Gaa President coming out and defending Dublins massive money injection in to their Gaa games.

    “Dublin’s success not down to money – GAA president John Horan defends Jim Gavin’s men”.

    The man is supposed to be President of the Gaa not a parrot for Dublin.

    Somebody would want to point out to him that there is more than 1 county in the country.

    It’s disgraceful to have the Gaa President coming out and trying to justify that the lopsided amount of funding Dublin receives is quite okay.

    There is little or no chance for counties suffering a slow football death to recover while the head of the organisation is now putting his shoulder fully behind the Dublin juggernaut.

  31. anyone know how the injured players are doing in training , especially Hanley who should have enough ball practice by now to make team if he is ever going to make it .

  32. Very much agree with Revellino – Horan is supposed to be President of the GA not a parrot for Dublin.

    The revolution starts now!! Up Mayo

  33. TurfmanMayo I was not slugging your username, my apologies. I was actually curious as my supplier is not cutting this year. Sorry again, I meant no offence

  34. 100 championship appearances cluxton made , some feat , fair play .

    89 of them in croke park, unheard of in any competitive sport the world over , absolute farce .

  35. Sligo have hurling and football matches this weekend, hurling on Saturday and playing Offaly on Sunday. What if Mayo were given the same choice, but decided that a 7 day turnaround in the event that we won was important. Do we criticise James Horan if he made this decision even though it may inconvenience the supporters?

  36. I just read Alan Brogans meandering piece in the independent about the death of football.

    He starts off by blaming tv for not showing enough games.

    He then goes on to compare the dismal atmosphere at the Dublin game and comparing it to the game played before the Dubs game and saying that atmosphere was poorer. No shit.

    He then goes on about only 14,000 at the Donegal match.

    He concludes after starting by blaming the TV stations by saying that the provincial championships should be scrapped.

    There is nothing wrong with the Connacht championship.

    There is nothing wrong with the ulster championship.

    Kerry have always been top dogs in munster. They are not a brilliant team and if cork get their shit together it will be back to where it once was.

    No. The problem is the non existent Leinster championship.
    I have nothing against Brogan but at least be man enough to admit that the Dublin system has already killed this provincial championship.

    Please don’t blame tv for this and don’t try and drag other provinces in to this discussion and disguise this as something other than what it is.

    This is what happens when the most populated county on the country gets to play their finals at home and gets 10’s of millions of euros thrown at them.

    Well done to all who have killed off the Leinster championship, but stay the hell away from the provinces who are trying their best to do things right.

  37. @Mayo Focus you are slagging my username off. I’m here to talk mayo football and how we are going to beat Down and advance through the qualilfers and hopefully qualify for the super 8’s. The business end of the championship while your here on this slagging me off and on about bags of turf. Cop on and grow up. By the way you carry on this blog I’d say your a negative Mayo fan.

  38. @:turfmanmayo relsx . As andy said we are mayo and we are in this together. Can we please keep negativity to a minimum itd a big few weeks for us and the players.

  39. People moaning about throw in time…it’s as simple as this if we hadn’t taken Roscommon for granted and kicked 16 wides etc. There would be no issue with fixtures. Unfortunately with the qualifiers that is to expected so suck it up and stop moaning. On social media it is getting embarrassing at all the moaning as a county we do…People love having a laugh at Mayos expense and I don’t blame them because there is always an eejit to react. No more than the pundits before the ros game can we as a county not shut our mouths…Would you see Kerry etc. Mouthing? Already i see fans saying well beat down handy enough…show some respect for opposition and dont give them any motivation no matter how bad you think they are!
    The fact is if we play as bad and are as slow on the sideline to make changes as the ros game we won’t be going too far and down could cause problems

  40. TurfmanMayo I am a very positive mayo fan and if you go through my posts you will see that. I meant no offence and please accept my apology.

    I love Mayo and especially our football team. You won’t meet many more positive mayo fans than me. Onwards to Down. The first qualifier game is historically difficult as we are coming off a defeat. We need to start well and hopefully put it to bed. The longer Down stay in the game, the more confidence they will get.

  41. I wouldn’t blame supporters for complaining about the fixture time. Its a difficult arrangement but I imagine a lot of people will still make the trek.

    I would wonder at the wisdom of the Mayo Co Board making public remarks including “the game could have gone ahead at 3pm on Saturday in Castlebar no problem”. Is it wise to be stepping into qualifier venue debates once again???
    Someone needs a course in PR.
    (maybe that’s yet another area where the Dublin money creates an advantage)

  42. Loreto Road – He meant what’s the difference with Newry that it can’t hold an earlier throw in when Castlebar/Cavan town have done so.

    Maybe he should have taken a leaf out of john Costello’s book and said it was mean spirited to make us travel at that time!

  43. Have to agree that the optics on the Mayo County Board statement are poor. If they were to come out and make a statement like that, the time and day to do it was the same as when the fixture was announced. This story only breaking today makes it look a bit like a box ticking exercise and in response to what supporters have been saying but too late now.
    Its not a case that they’re damned if they do and damned if they don’t, rather a case of what they do and when they do it.
    A 7pm throw in will rule out a lot of people going and for me, the way things are working out I had a limited chance of going depending on the draw and a game in Newry at any time of day or night me ruled out my attendance.
    People are right to feel aggrieved but at this stage nothing is going to change, and nor really should we expect anything different from the lads in Croke Park who really have shown themselves to be getting further and further away from the grass roots of the organisation.

  44. In reality, how many Down supporters will attend the hurling in Croke Park on Saturday week and then go to the football in Newry (50-100 at most I would think). So the GAA are trying to facilitate these supporters but ignore the requirements of 4,000 Mayo supporters who would prefer a starting time of even 5 pm – if Newry is that busy for a 3 pm start.

  45. Look , while I don’t agree with the time , its not going to be changed . Its 2.5 hrs from my Midlands home .. I’ve decided to go as feel a lot of the usual Mayo support won’t or its just not possible to travel with the time . Unfortunately I won’t be bringing the kids as its too late to get home .. For all the are travelling , these boys need us now as much as ever so let’s be heard .

  46. Unfortunately, I have to miss this game because of a family occasion and I’m a bit sickened to be honest. A lot of Mayo supporters wouldn’t care if the game was on Rockall at 12 midnight they would be there! Have no doubt about it Mayo will have a big crowd in Newry to support the lads. The journey up is no problem and the home journey will be considerably shorter if we win. If we lose then it will be the last journey for a very long time. Go and shout the lads on for Gods sake. I’d hate to think that the next game would be January 2020 in the FBD.

  47. I can see a perfect Irish Times click bait headline off the back of WJs preamble;

    “Trump condemned as Mayo fans fume at Newry throw-in time”

  48. Have to agree with you there Pk. It is time to stop the moaning. The first sign of a loser is to make excuses the ref, the venue, the time, the uneven distribution of finance etc. I have done it myself during the years especially the venue and ref in 2014 etc. We definitely have a reputation for it. I live outside the county and the first thing I heard after we lost to Ross was Well who are ye going to blame today. We have a good team and we need to be positive. If we lose there is not always the need to search for a scapegoat or an excuse. Lots of people from other counties are delighted to see us lose, not because they don’t like our football team but because the don’t like some our supporters attitudes We get a huge amount of negative comments on social media far more than any other county. Too often we come across as disrespecting other counties and we arrogantly proclaim we should be always beating the likes of Galway, Ross,Kildare etc We haven’t won the AI since 1951 so I don’t know where the superiority complex is coming from. The best thing to do is for our county team to go out and just beat what is in front of us and move on just as we did on our brilliant run to the final in 2017 when we won over all the critics with our sheer doggedness and at times brilliance. Of course Newry at 7 is unfair but that’s what happens in the back door. If supporters can be there, great, if not hopefully we will have another day. We have had a super time following this team. Let’s just continue to enjoy it.

  49. Not a fan of that county board statement tbh. If it was suggested to put the game on Sunday then fair enough but we don’t have the divine right to have the game at 3pm on Saturday, especially with Downs hurlers playing. Just because our county board ignores hurling doesn’t mean every county does. It is a final after all

  50. I am sure both teams were consulted about the date & time.If it was on Sun the winner would have a 6 day turnover.As regards 2014 our CB knew well in advance that a replay would be in Limerick

  51. As Swinford and Mayo supporters mourn the Passing of Padraig Carney one London based Mayo fan is critical of Swinford club failing to fulfill a fixture in Newport when the Great man traveled many times from the USA……maybe our present supporters should keep this in mind when moaning about getting home late ……..to do what?

  52. I won’t be able to travel home for this game due to commitments at work. Therefore I have neither reason nor the right to complain about the timing.

    I do agree that we have some justification for our dismay at the timing, but we also need to park our collective disappointment at some point. There’s no point heading up the road bitching and moaning as that could feed into the Mayo support on the day.

    Any other news on the squad. Has James Carr been seen or heard from in the northern hemisphere since the league final?

  53. to win just once, what a great comment.
    Should be compulsory reading for us all.
    Up Mayo.
    We are in it still, so enjoy the run, however long or short it is and thanks again to all for the wonderful memories

  54. Rock, there is good reason James Carr hasn’t been seen, I’ll leave it at that.
    I have to say, I’ve a bad feeling about this game. Off field bickering about times and venues just reminds me of Limerick and Newbridge last year, not to mention there seems to be a general apathy among fans about another slog through the qualifiers. makes me feel like this could be another scalp for a lower ranked team at our expense.
    Not having a go at anyone by the way, I understand completely why people can’t make that trip, especially with young kids.

  55. Don’t know what the story is with James Carr and if I did I wouldn’t post it here he is probably injured but we wouldn’t be Mayo without somehow managing to lose out on a very talented footballer Pádraig Brogan was one of the best forwards in Ireland in 1989 but for one reason or another he didn’t make the team anyway good luck to James Carr but I hope he knuckles down and play he has enormous potential

  56. If he was injured it was strange that Horan didn’t namecheck him when discussing injured players post ros game. Dreamy I wouldn’t expect you to give info but would you see Carr being back for Mayo??

  57. Seems strange if it’s a case of player commitment particularly when he worked hard to get back from long term injury.

    You’d imagine he’d have been buzzing after the league final.

  58. Hogan Stand reporting via Daily Star, that Cillian played in a challenge against Clare at the weekend – for 20 minutes. No reports of sightings of other Mayo players on the injured list. That surely must be one plus that arises from the month’s idleness – the walking wounded should now have healed.

  59. Dont want to say too much as I know the rules here but I believe he will be back playing for Mayo

  60. The Hogan stand article namechecks James Carr as one of the ones “making their way back to full fitness”. Mind you, they seem to rob some of their articles from elsewhere and are not always the most reliable source of info.

  61. Careful there, Mayonaze – you’re straying close to adding two and two and getting twenty-two there. There’s no info, as far as I know, out there on why he hasn’t featured and it’s pointless to be speculating on what the story is in the absence of hard info.

    Catcol – Mike Finnerty also reported that news on the latest episode of the podcast. It was in this week’s Mayo News as well, where it was also reported that Seamus O’Shea, Donal Vaughan and Fionn McDonagh are “still working their way back to match fitness”, which doesn’t sound so positive.

  62. Okay, what if…
    People are praising Jim Gavin for keeping the spotlight off Dublin hence their 5 in a row bid is sneaking in under the radar…no pressure there Jim. Good job.
    Mayo win the League with a performance which was impressive but not perfect. Suddenly they’re the team that’ll put a halt to this 5 in a row mullarkey… and rightly so.
    Next thing we know Mayo are beaten by Roscommon… and the wheels fall off the Mayo wagon. Well that puts paid to our high hopes and forget about it lads… we’re on a hiding to nuffin!
    I know I’m deluded and I’m a Mayo supporter but is this not just perfect for us… no-one expects anything from this whinging crowd of losers…so we stumble through the qualifiers without impressing and voile, we’re into a do or die match with Dublin… I’d still put my house on Mayo….once it’s not a final. We’ll knock them out and lose the final to Stephen Rochford’s Donegal. Who says we’re not cute hoors in Mayo…
    I hope I haven’t exposed the plan…but isn’t it great to dream. Come on Mayo. I still love you… when you turn it on you’re irresistible.

  63. It will all come down excuse the pun to composure something thats sadly been lacking in Mayo for a long time. Time for these forwards to calm down and not shoot wildly at the posts for the inevitable wide but instead try to pick out someone in space to slot it over. Its easier said than down with confidence appearing to be low with the Mayo forwards. Its hard to see Mayo making the Super 8 given their difficulties in closing out matches but if they get over Down and avoid a big team in the next round a Super 8 qualification is possible. Beating Dublin and reaching another final as alluded to by AlexM above seems far fetched given the recent form of Mayo.

  64. My God please stop moaning. I will be leaving home before 9am on Saturday..Catching a flight to Dublin and then a bus to Newry arriving there after 3pm. Then catching a 6/30 flight Sunday morning and hope to be home by 10am. Nothing to compare watching the Green and Red.

  65. Fair enough WJ but it’s a bit frustrating when you really want to know!!! Anyway, the main thing is that he gets back, sooner rather than later hopefully and that he is OK.

  66. Yeah I have to say too I cannot understand the level of complaining about this fixture. It’s a bit embarrassing. It’s a few hours up the road to follow our county team; so what if you get back at 1am! And if you have small kids and are concerned about their bedtime then don’t bring them. Like, what else will you be doing at 1am on a sat nite?! (no answers on that required ;)) Seriously though, if you want to go to the game enough, you’ll go. If you don’t, you wont. If you can’t, then that’s different again.

    Everybody is different but please stop giving out. It’s not like it’s new. The GAA have been making these kind of fixture decisions for years and some may feel so frustrated that their way of displaying this is by not turning up, but for me, supporting Mayo in a championship game takes precedent.

    Will be there again with the big flags behind the goals – you are welcome to come join us and wave the green and red.

  67. Well said Mayonaze.
    It’s unfair and some people especially with kids won’t be able to travel. It’s a dumb decision from the powers that be and that ain’t going to change any time soon. We’ve had a moan about it so let’s move on an support the lads.

    Before we lost by a point to a fellow division 1 team we were going to be the only team to stop the drive for 5…now it’s the end of the team? The swing from high to low is not based in reality.
    I really hope Mayo can put in a performance on the pitch on sat and those of us who are lucky enough to travel are seen and heard in the stands.

  68. Some people moaning about what? Oh, other people moaning, …..A 7pm Throw In, in Newry is a legitimate greviance….. and an absolute nightmare for those loyal and passionate, Mayo supporter’s who travel regularly and regardless of the difficulty involved with young children, without whom there would be NO Mayo Team in the first place… I seen after the Roscommon Game,. On this Blog, some people moaning about the lack of aphmosphere in Mchale Park, at least that’s the way it seemed to those people who were actually watching it on TV… Yes, “some’ of ye who watch Match”s match’s on TV, giving out about the ‘Lack’ atmosphere in Castlebar, and worse still, more hoping for an away fixture because of the ‘better’ atmosphere, well for the majority of those who are giving out about the lack of atmosphere in Castlebar, it’s hard to expect that many of ye will possibly make it to Newry.. Knowledge of atmosphere is a luxery that ye won’t have with the Down Match, on Saturday week, but maybe ye will be able to judge from the radio?…..The Match will actually go ahead at 7pm, because the Mayo County Board, don’t know how to moan properly, and have a ledigamate greviance heard, hint (Ask the Kildare County Board what to do)… and we ‘The Mayo County Board’ have rolled over too many times for the ‘CCCC’ not to give one hoot about us, all they care about is our money!. …

  69. These are the scores from the Tahiti judge.

    There has been more complaining about the people who complained about the late fixture than there were complaints about the late fixture itself.

    There is one mirror in the hallway and another in the bathroom. Let’s all take a good long look.

  70. Leantimes, I totally agree with you on the lack of atmosphere comment’. I noticed that ‘on the tv’; comment too and laughed. Reality was though (as someone who was there!), the atmosphere was pretty much non-existant and we never got behind the team. The Mayo ‘away support’ to steal a soccer phrase, is much better. The support for the Mayo team in Newry will be significantly louder than it is in Castlebar even though we’ll have about 3 or 4 thousand in Newry and treble that at home. A significant amount of people who turn up to Mayo games are ‘spectators’. They really aren’t what you can describe as ‘supporters’. That’s the problem.

    But, on the fixture thing. A 7pm start in a venue several hours away was always a likely outcome as soon as we entered the qualifier route. I’m surprised by the level of shock and dismay at it (GAA are doing it for years). It was always going to happen. I agree that doesnt mean it’s right and that aggrieved supporters should just adhere to it etc. But what can we do? As supporters you are limited. We could have all decided not to go; if only a few hundred Mayo supporters turned up then that might make the Gaa take stock and reassess their fixture policy (for some counties) but we have no real supporters body and anytime people go to the effort of trying the set one up the numbers are always sparse.

    The other is a protest of some sort. But I fall into the camp of thinking it’s no big deal. If anything I am looking forward to the journey and going somewhere new for a championship game. In my opinion, Mayo supporters should be relishing the opportunity to turn out in force, proudly representing our county and showing that we are the best or at least striving to be the best. (provided of course you are able to go). It never once entered my mind not to travel. And for what it’s worth I have a small kid. He wont be going. And I live in west Galway so it’s a long journey. So what.

  71. Haven’t paid much heed to the scheduling issue, but…

    It seems it’s turned into a debate about suitable times for matches, and a valuable point is being missed.

    The Mayo County Board had anticipated a problem and put in a request. The request appears to have been dealt with, in the most condesending and arrogant fashion by Croke Park.

    The lack of communication and co-operation with “fellow volunteers” from Croke Park.

    It appears that the Mayo GAA County Board’s request was met with no response until the contradictory fixture was announced.

    The apparent request from the PSNI is very questionable.

  72. Ive no problem with fans who go to the games and don’t shout and roar…some people like to analyze a game. As long as they don’t complain about those roaring.

    There are however a large number of fans (not just mayo) though who just roar and shout and haven’t a clue about football and are just there to be seen or to be part of the bandwagon.

  73. jr league games set for a 7pm start were done so for television.
    that’s not the case in this situation.

  74. Correct yew_tree

    A real genuine atmosphere is caused and comes from whats happening on the pitch. Its reactionary. Someone makes a hard tackle or scores a great point, and a genuine roar goes up from the crowd.

    Roaring out at the pitch at a team that isn’t performing on the day, number 1 its a false roar and number 2 it nearly reeks of desperation.

    Players should be roared on for great plays and also in tough games where they need that bit of extra help and encouragement.

    Sure Jesus, if we roar out at the pitch the whole time the lads won’t know if they are playing well or not.

    I still remember been somewhat lifeless at the 2006 All_Ireland Final. We must have been 10 or 12 points down and getting 7 bells knocked out of us by Kerry. It was obvious that things were not going to get any better but actually could get far worse.

    The woman right next to me was roaring her arse off, “come on Mayo, come on Mayo”.

    She then turned on me.

    “Why are you not roaring” ?
    “Why are you not shouting” ?
    “Why did you pay 50 euros to come to the match” ?

    I told her it certainly wasn’t to listen to her roaring at me.

    Fair play to her spirit. She had more of it than I had, but it struck me like a prime example of beating the dead horse. Her roaring that day was almost insane.

  75. Every supporter is different and some days people can be more fired up than others, for many reasons.

    There are definitely times when a team needs a boost. Like James Horan said about 2013, he wished there was as much shouting while the game was on as there was after it.

    One things for sure, the day certain people are fired up, they do need something to feed in to which might possibly have a positive effect.

  76. Yew tree and revelino, I think ye are both wrong,and that is the reason we are terrible at home with all the empty vessel supporters, who wont fo out of their way to travel to a game and only add anxiety and bring nothing to the occasion when Mayo need ye most. I actually enjoy being on the road for the games, as you will get the hardcore fans who are not afraid to support their team loudly when needed in a game. It’s easy to support a team when they are on fire. Roll on the Down game, where I will be hoarse supporting the green and red.

  77. @Mayomanindublin….’Atmosphere’ like beauty is in the eye of the beholder, if you are watching on TV…. However, if you are attending the match, It most definitely is there for all of the senses, Such as in quite conversation with knowledgeable GAA fan’s, both our own fan’s and opponents before and after throw in, it’s there in the smell of cut grass, it’s there in the Eye’s of an excited Children , eager to get a good look at their hero’s. … Great if it’s like the singing of “The Green and Red of Mayo’ like happened directly after the League Final…. I feel certain that you do contribute to an atmosphere, however you have chosen to use a very unfortunate ‘Metaphor’ in describing people that you don’t know…. You know what they say about ‘Empty Vessels’?….

  78. Can’t believe all the time dedicated to the fact the match is at 7pm on the blog. Surely the news of the week is that Cillian is back. I am sure the focus will switch next week to the team and how we need to approach this hurdle!

  79. Just reading a few of the posts from last night and I can’t believe the arrogance of some people who are basically saying you have to shout and roar to be a real Mayo supporter and trying to make a distinction between supporter and spectator. We are all supporters of Mayo whether you spend the 70 mins shouting or sitting just watching the game. We are all supporters of Mayo whether you attend every match or if you can only attend a few. I hate being told how I should act at football matches. I will shout at a game when I feel like it or if I see something worth shouting at. Anyone telling me at a match to either shout or keep quiet will be told politely to fuck off.

  80. Mayomanindublin – Empty vessels? Generally from my own point of view I’ll react to a good score, tackle, etc…as said I’ll react to what’s going on the field and not just shout the usual “cmon on mayo” crap.

    I also travel when I can but don’t make every game due to real life and club football commitments. I remember folllowng mayo in 2011 when there was feck all of us on the road with them.

  81. For God ‘s sake, will some of ye get a grip.

    First of all, it was complaining about the 7pm throw in time, even though other counties have come to Mc Hale Park , for 7pm starts for NFL games in winter weather and got on with it.

    Then, people who have decided not to go to Newry for legitimate reasons, are told by some people here, that they’re not true supporters at all, if they don’t go and back our team.

    Now, it’s decibel levels that are causing the problem. Vocal Mayo supporters telling less vocal Mayo supporters, that they’re not true supporters at all, if they simply sit and watch the match.
    What rubbish !!!!!
    It’s not in some people’s persona to be vocal and loud at matches..It’s just the way they are.
    Yet, in they’re own heart and soul, they are there kicking every ball with the Mayo players.
    Anyone that wants to be loud and vocal in their support of Mayo, has every right to do exactly that, if that’s what you want to do.
    What you don’t have the right to do, is criticised or try to influence quieter supporters into doing what you think they should be doing.

  82. A suggestion from somebody who would most likely fail his ‘Mayo Supporter’ exam as the new curriculum is beyond me. Why not include the supporter(s) who influence the result on the day in the man of the match survey. That may even provide me with the incentive to start practicing the kicking of points from up in the stands. Come to think of it I was not very accurate when in front of the posts.

  83. @revellino

    I had exact same experience at the first kerry-mayo game in 2017.
    Stuck beside some eejit mayo fan elbowing me and cajoling me throughout the entire 70 mins as I wasn’t joining in his braying and chanting.

    The game was a modern classic. I was too absorbed in it from minute 1 to join in with his roaring. I was quietly trying to analyse the game as it was unfolding

    To make matters worse he literally missed boylers goal as he had his back to the play trying to get a chant going.
    Before full-time he gave me another mouthful for not getting behind the tean

    Now each to their own, I have no problem with fans singing and chanting but this notion that the more noise you make the better fan you are is pure shite

  84. …i forgot the best bit

    when he was roaring at the ref to look out for Gooch Coopers ‘diving’….
    I had to inform him that Cooper had retired the previous year. lol. Clueless!

  85. Ah lads and ladies, come on, giving out and moaning about the different types of supporter is not on. Listen, we all want the same thing, Mayo to win at all costs, no matter what. Some of us shout and some of us don’t. I shout and encourage the team as the game goes on, but sometimes I go quiet through sheer nerves and anxiety, everyone is different. I would never give out to a fellow supporter if they are ‘quiet’ because inside they’re dancing too, believe me. Live and let live, we’re all Mayo aren’t we?

    We are a week out from our biggest game of the year, let’s focus on that, nothing else. Pay no attention to ‘supporters’ of other counties calling us this and that, they themselves can’t be talking, most of the offenders are from due south of Shrule, sure that lot wouldn’t fill a minibus to an away game if it was free.

    Up Mayo, let’s tackle the Down challenge together, not pulling knives at eachothers throats. Strength in unity and all that.

  86. Jaysus lads we badly need some team news or some actual football to talk about. All this venue and time and supporters stuff is getting very tiresome. Roll on next week when we might get a few real bones to chew on.

  87. Back to football then, and the opposItion

    Down really are a mystery, they have had a huge turnover of players. An awful amount of newbies and rookies in their team, strengths and weaknesses as far as i can tell

    Weaknesses:
    – very inexperienced, huge amount of newbies and massive player turnover. They are at year 1 of a rebuild it seems
    – midfield. They have nothing at midfield really, Caolon Mooney is extremely mobile and athletic but they dont have any big fetchers. Mayo need to go long with kickouts and they will dominate midfield
    – reliance on a few key players to perform. If McKernan, Mooney, Harrison, O’Hare dont all bring their A game then they wont win

    Strengths:
    – Connaire Harrison. Really worried about him, precisely the kind of wrecking ball full forward we struggle with. Can win any type of ball and bring others into it
    – Paddy Tally: this guy is an excellent, modern coach with players all buying in for him. He will be relishing a big tie like this. Dont judge him on what Brolly says, thats yet another weird baseless brolly agenda
    – Unpredictability: Down are always a complete enigma, one of those teams that could beat a division 1 team then lose to a division 4 team, hard to plan for

    Whatever way i weigh things up even at my most pessimistic i just think Mayo are going to have far too much for them, Mayo by 6

  88. Getting more and more nervous about this. Rumour mill is not helping. Just wish the game was tomorrow now.

  89. This is some blog , turfman has no turf , quietman won’t stay quiet and mayomad tells people politely to fuck off , at least i’m the real Roger Milla , world cup star and legend of the green and red ( and yellow ).

    Those of us living overseas have been spoiled rotten with the live coverage of mayo games over the last few years since the SKY deal came in. I know Willie Joe has always been against it but I myself prefer their coverage and the extra games shown means more chances to see Mayo play. I am disappointed they didn’t elect to show the Down game. Hopefully we will feature in the coming rounds both in the draw and on the box!

    RTE are an absolute disgrace in the amount of coverage. Imagine if TG4 and TV3 or whatever they are called could show a few matches too. Instead we get 5 minutes of highlights of some games and then inane comments from eejits who werent at the match and didnt even watch the five minutes highlights !! Surely something can be done about this???

  90. No one said being more vocal makes you better!!! What I said was in reference to a lack of atmosphere at home games versus away games. Why is that? Because the mayo away support is more vocal whereas the majority of the home support are reactionary. No one said it was wrong and no one said those aren’t ‘true supporters’. Sometimes people need to read the messages rather than interpret what they think is being said. I certainly don’t appreciate being called arrogant for pointing out the obvious!!

    On to Newry…Where I’ll see all the true fans!!

    Joke!!!

  91. May be interesting to see where the no 1 and 16 jersies go next week.

    Alot of signs that the year is hurtling towards a quick end with lots of questions and us being firmly no 3 in Connacht and nearer a tier 2 team than a tier 1.

  92.  Mayonaze, A line from your post last night at 9:19pm.

    “A significant amount of people who turn up to Mayo games are ‘spectators’. They really aren’t what you can describe as ‘supporters’. That’s the problem”

    Is this not suggesting some people are not true supporters?

  93. This s Downs AIF for sure, a big home championship game against the mighty Mayo rolling into town and the home supporters will be baying for blood from just outside the white lines. If I were Horan I would encourage a steady defensive approach for the opening 15 minutes to take a little gusto out of both their players and supporters. The last thing Mayo want is these guys getting their tails up as they are a team that have a few fine players and the knockout edge coupled with the “also ran tag” can offer even average players the opportunity to play that game of their careers on days like this.

    Mayo are a significantly better team than them but that doesn’t mean that they can’t turn ye over if ye aren’t totally tuned in on the day. It was said earlier that Down have a history of turning it on against better teams and being flat against lesser teams, God knows I am aware of that as we were caught in 2010 by a team that we should have put to bed before half time but they got an early goal and they grew into the game and we were like a drunk at a gymnastics event, everything we did went arseways and we looked like we played together for about a week before the game. Just before the throw-in a heavy drizzle started and the ball was like a bar of soap, we looked like a team of players that expected everyone else to do the work and our year ended that day. I have no doubt had we drawn with them we would have savaged them in the replay but that is championship football.

    Mayo are a big team with exceptionally well conditioned players, ye beat us twice this year in two late league games. The first game I put it down to the dreadful conditions and it suiting the conditioning and experience of your players. I thought the league final would be close but when the day was so good for football I expected our more clinical forwards to out score ye in a tight game. Perhaps if Clifford had been fed with more ball he would have tipped it in our favor but that said we were being forced into silly errors and decisions with the Mayo pressure and as the game closed our younger players were visibly fading.

    Down are no giants and mayo will be wide awake for this one, I expect ye to win and if ye get a run on them ye could give them a right hosing but ye are definitely heading into the qualifier minefield in a slightly dangerous area. Good luck

  94. For the life of me I still can’t understand how we suddenly become a bad team overnight.
    Excellent in the league and now theres a palpable sense of dread. Puzzling.
    Oh to be a fly on the wall at a team meeting.
    Maybe the hunger and will are gone for this group, who knows. If the spirit and togetherness are still there we’ve a chance, but it’s not going to be easy in the qualifiers route.
    Can Cillian and Fionn mcdonagh make a key difference? It’s possible. I expect a huge summer from Vaughan too.
    Maybe try Brian reape again. We need a viable target man with Cillian inside to really vary our play. We still have loads of runners outfield.
    James needs to think real hard about how to set up and more importantly what players to pick that fit into this. By all means retain the attacking principles he stands by, but have a plan B and C.
    Surely this group can salvage something of the summer still. Massive soul searching required. I’m not overly optimistic but I still have some hope.

  95. @Gamechanger… In total agreement with you as regards how to approach the Down Match…. Forget ‘Horan Ball’! ..Time for the managnent to show some tatical dexterit!

  96. Dreamysleepyetc – it’s absolutely pointless posting a comment like that, which only invites others to go fishing for more information. How often do I have to say this? This site is NOT a place for tittle-tattle and that includes alluding obliquely to possible developments. Mainstream social media is the place for that kind of shite.

  97. Connaught Telegraph reporting that Matthew Ruane has broken his collar bone. Huge blow

  98. Independent said initial reports suggest he’ll miss the Down game and the next qualifier round (if we get there). Which wouldn’t be terrible. Avoid Monaghan and Tyrone we SHOULD be able to get to super 8s without him and have him back for first or second game. Indo also said SOS and Vaughan are back.

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