Fire, fury and fearlessness – dealing with Donegal

It’s not exactly in keeping with the modern game but it’s hard to get away from the idea that the best thing Mayo can do is throw the tactics board out the window and attack Donegal with a manic intensity that leaves their heads spinning on Saturday week!

Frankly it’s been hard to identify much of a game plan in general this year, other than when Andy Moran is on the pitch. The best Plan B in Gaelic football duly turned up once again last Sunday to give the whole show a bit of purpose and structure which was badly needed.

That kind of clarity is exactly what’s required when Mayo are labouring to beat a clearly inferior side in Meath. However, when Donegal come to town I wonder if the best approach might be a complete about-turn.

The worst thing Mayo could do is become embroiled in a cagey, tactical affair where everyone feels too restricted. That kind of contest will surely play into Donegal’s hands and allow them to gradually build a platform where they’ll back the likes of Murphy, McBrearty and Brennan to get them over the line in the second half.

Of the five teams remaining in the Championship, Mayo look to be the least tactically aware right now. That’s a harsh reality and is not something that was true in the period from 2012-2017 when a more nuanced, measured approach was often key to winning so many big games and running Dublin so close on so many occasions. They could also bring the manic approach when they needed it but they had a tactical versatility which allowed them to do different things on different days.

For whatever reason, that tactical awareness has been lacking more recently with a host of disjointed performances pointing to a team in transition.

Then there is the Stephen Rochford angle. Much has already been written about how the Crossmolina native will have the inside track on us tactically and how vital that could be in getting Donegal over the line.

What is the best way to counter that obvious edge? Take tactics – to a large extent – out of the equation.

Nobody does ‘backs-against-the-wall’ football quite like this Mayo team. The fitness of certain individuals will play a big part and only time will tell on that front. If available, Durcan/Keegan/Boyle/Higgins driving forward with that fire and brimstone running power is surely the best way for Mayo to get an early foothold in the game.

Everyone else can be expected to take their lead from that and inject their own brand of individual chaos into different areas of the pitch. James Carr is the perfect example of this – imagine if he is watching senior players taking such a direct, no-nonsense attitude right from the first whistle? On the little evidence we have to go on, he won’t need asking twice to follow suit and head straight towards the Donegal goal.

It’s not the most sophisticated approach, it’s not the most sustainable and it’s certainly no guarantee of winning next Saturday night … but it’s surely the best option for this Mayo team right now!

133 thoughts on “Fire, fury and fearlessness – dealing with Donegal

  1. A cagey affair will definitely suit Donegal better, they are better equipped for that at present especially with Murphy ability to hit frees from anywhere inside the half way line. I think we will be a different team come Saturday week, we will need to be.

  2. Mayo been written off in the national media and other forums, podcasts etc.

    I note the game has sold out…plans in motion to try and get MacHale up to 30,000.

    It’s absolutely ridiculous a stadium that was only a few years ago deemed suitable to hold 38,000 now only has permission to hold 25,000… and safety gone mad. I remember in 2006 there were just over 35,000 in MacHale Park for Mayo v Galway Connacht final and that was before the new stand was built.

  3. Good article Kevin, just the 2 points for me.
    How do you rate your own tactical approach in big games? and Where do you keep your 2 all ireland medals?

  4. Completely disagree that we should go in with the manic aggression approach. Our squad is too stretched at the moment, we’ve played too many games this year and we’ve too many players the wrong side of 30. Once donegal weathered the initial storm, We’d simply run out of steam. We need to play a smarter game than that.

  5. I think our Strength and Conditioning has dropped off big time since 2016 and 17, Barry Solan was been a huge loss in this regard.While Dublins S and C appears to be getting better just look at Con O’Callaghan and Brian Howards physique transformation in the last 2 years both must have gained a stone in lean muscle.Alot of Mayos younger players still seem very light Conor Loftus, Fergal Boland, Ciaran Treacy and you just cant see them getting the better of Philly McMahon or James McCarthy.Is Bryan Cullen doing something different to the other Strength and Conditioning coaches in the Country cause the Dubs are on another level physically at the moment?

  6. Our S & C looked good in the last 10 minutes against Meath! Personally I think Boyle and Barrett in particular have looked a yard quicker than last year.

  7. @Chris Kelly, I attended the Dubs v Cork match, Con Ó Callaghan has changed he looks like a young bull, unrecognisable from last year, he has put on at least a stone of muscle in his upper body, he now looks like a real Dub with the skinner of a haircut.
    Mayo S & C is ok, we will know for sure in the next game.

  8. I’m not a great tactican but the approach I’d take is the one we took in 2017 in the quarter final against Tyrone people had us written off that day too but we won a cagey shootout and the inclusion of Alan Dillon totally perplexed Mickey Harte on the day. Now the only problem this time against Donegal is Rochford is on the opposite side of the fence and the only running Dillon is doing these days is for the Dail so it’s hard to know what approach to take who’d be a manager? Good post Kevin by the way

  9. All this talk of mayo firing the kitchen sink at Donegal would be off the wall. In an open and stretched game I would take Donegal to out score Mayo in a shootout. Plus Mayo would be in a semi final the following week against Dublin.

    No point getting to it and not showing up. Keep it tight and look to get at the full back line with kick passes

  10. Will the game be shown On RTE I hope so. Sky Coverage is terrible difficult to understand the commentators they have

  11. @Chris Kelly.

    “gained a stone in lean muscle”. I thought you were talking about a calf you were getting ready for the factory. I had to re read it, but your right. A few of the Dubs have bulked up big time.

    I kind of like Kevin’s idea of an all out assault. Lets face it, we are not going to win any tactical battle, that’s for sure. Donegal would have to expend a fair bit of energy trying to come to grips with our assault.

    I know people are saying “what about when we run out of energy” ?

    Well we have a strong bench and we can sub in 6 from the bench for 14 of our outfield players.

    I would much rather have Donegal struggling to contain our running game than us sitting back and letting Mchugh, Mcbrearty etc tear at us.

  12. I think McHugh, McBrearty & Murphy has played on Donegal teams against us several times since 2012 & have lost every time! We need to lose the fear & admiration we seem to hold at present for this Donegal team – we hold the upper hand over them for quite some time now & we’re playjng at home.

    I totally agree that we tear into them from the off, a bit like Kerry did to us in Killarney & show them who’s boss !! I’m totally confident that we have the players to win this one – time we started showinf teams again that coming to Castlebar is an experience they won’t want to repeat for a long time !

  13. Donegal will expect the all out attack and will look to catch ye on the break through McHugh. Patience not panicking will get the win I would fear an all out effort that peeters out and Mayo have lulled in games with no score for 10-15 minutes and Donrgal could badly expose Mayo in that time. Rochford will have given them huge insight into what to expect and how to counter it. Surely a measured approach is less risky.

  14. Surely the availability or otherwise of a number of player’s will dictate our approach..
    I expect some 10 or 15 minutes of feeling each other out, too much at stake for both teams for it to be Otherwise…. Neither Team will be easily caught by surprise by the other… @Backdoorsam, back in 2016 I suggest that Niall Morgan missing every free he took for Tyrone had a far bigger effect on Mickey Harte than anything Mayo done on that particular day, and of course Séan Cavanagh getting sent off, was hardly in the Blueprint….It was great to win, but no masterplan I’m afraid…. Not a template I would rely on…. Tyrone absolutely blew it back then…. Murphy on the free’s is unlikely to miss very much, and Donegal’s self discipline is pretty good, far better than Tyrone’s I would suggest….Self Disipline is an aspect of our Game that has also improved no end this year…. I hope for as many as possible of our players to have a clean bill of health, but in my case it won’t be gungho from the start I’m almost certain.

  15. The manic approach sounds great but even the Dubs don’t play like that for 70 mins! Even if we wanted to we don’t have the legs or the level of midfield dominance that would give us the platform to do it. So no i disagree Kevin! Horan needs to pull a rabbit out of the hat tactically for this one that’s for sure and we have to hope our kick-outs go well or it could be a chastening afternoon. Id say we have to play it cagey and stick with them and when a purple patch comes we need to be clinical. We need to find a way to stop their runners from deep and cut out their accurate kick passes into their forward line while making hay ourselves. A tall order but not beyond us.

  16. I don’t think we need to choose one over the other. We simply won’t be able to sustain a full court assault on Donegal, I’m not sure any team can.

    We’ll need to pick and choose when we press down on their throat. We’ll also need to rest on occasion and soak up a bit of pressure. Donegal are a good side so we simply won’t have it all our own way.

    The break is huge for us. Minds and bodies needed that break – squad, management and supporters! Donegal have some really promising young lads in attack. They’ve showed really well for them so far.

    We need to make Castlebar a step too far. Barrett, Harrison, Higgins, Keegan, Durcan – it’s these guys that will be crucial. It they can get it right at the back then we can rampage forward with our running game.

  17. On the GAA website under the tickets section it says “there are no tickets available for this fixture at this time” so they must be definitely sold out there anyway.

  18. The GAA will surely organise some event before the big game to get the attendance up by a further 5,000 plus. They are hardly going to let over €100,000 slip through there hands.

  19. Just a word on where Donegal got most of their scores from against Kerry. Placed balls 1-09. Every other team at the weekend were not relying so much on frees. Mayo 0-04, Kerry 0-04 . Kerry got their scores so much easier from play than what Donegal did. I also believe that if Ryan McHugh is marked out of it , it stops a lot of their good attacking play. (Enter Leeroy). I also don’t think Kerry put as much pressure on Donegal kickouts as they did to us in Killarney.

  20. One quick point, yes Stephen Rochford was the previous Mayo manager but he has no current insight into James Horan’s background tactical setup at present. Therefore, SR will focus on his setup with Donegal and how they’ll plot to win the game, it’s a waste of time trying to plan what Mayo will do. I’m not sure we know ourselves!

    You go out to play to your game plan, and if you get it right you win. Pretty simple.

    We seem to play in the game in 1/4’s (blocks of 20 mins across 80 odd mins)

    How those blocks fall is anyone’s guess. We can be upside down and back to front or else majestic and unstoppable.

    Either way we are Mayo so let’s get to an All-Ireland semi final by winning on the 3rd, I don’t care who we play in the semi…. No one wants to play Mayo.

  21. The All Ireland Semifinal should be played in a Neutral Venue and a Safe all Seater for Safety… maybe somewhere in Neutral Switzerland, Oh Ireland is supposed to be Neutral as well…. Croke Park? I dunno, allot of people have to stand up, sure that’s just now Safe nowadays, and another thing there are always about 20K of the best fed Seagull’s flying about overhead, Swuaking and S***ing all over the Shop, definitely not safe…. Maybe these Sea Gulls are crossed with Parrot’s, that Swuaking sounds awfully like Come On you Boy’s in Blue…. One thing for sure that Harris Hawk perched on the Top of the Hogan Stand isn’t doing much to frighten them Seagull’s off…. Not that you can hardly blame the Harris Hawk, with the size of them bloody Sea Gulls, he’s probably afraid!

  22. The one tactical aspect of our game we need to improve is to tighten up our back line. At the moment if we are ran at we just open up . The last day Seamus O Shea was taken on 35 yards out from the Mayo goal and when beaten there was no cover. Same in the second half when the Meath conor back mishit his shot that went over the bar. If we give the likes of Ryan McHugh the opportunity to run at us we’ll suffer the consequences. I think we need to deploy a sweeper between the full back and center back line as a security blanket so that these situations do not occur. Would Eoin O Donoghue be the answer? I’ve watched him come up through the ranks and I don’t understand why we are not playing him. He can read the game, is good under a high ball and is a good distributor of the ball. A two man full forward line I think would suit us as well with Andy teaming up with a speedster like James Carr . Then you have Kevin Mc if he’s on his game able to rove and create and also to help win dirty ball something that we have been poor at so far in the championship.

  23. Those seagulls aren’t afraid of hawk eye either.

    Níl and tá. That won’t scare the seagulls.

    They should put the referee up on a high chair on the half way line like Wimbledon. They seem to miss alot of fouls at ground level.

    I don’t think a seagull is a fowl but a seagull shatting on a spectator is a foul.

  24. Mayo will beat Donegal on August 3rd. I totally believe in these lads. We must have as many of our injured players back in order to get to full strength.
    Donegal would be confident of beating us in Castlebar with our 15 that started against Meath. However we will prove a sterner opposition if Mattie, Duarmuid, Keith and Paddy start. We should keep our cards close to our chest on this one no leaks to media etc.
    This will be a tighter game than most people think. Now is the time for the Mayo hammer right
    from the start we must attack, attack attack. We have to keep Donegal on the back foot and build a lead. If we can hold the Midfield sector we will win. There is no point in trying to slow down the game with lateral hand passes and running into blind alleys and trying to pick off long range points. We must RUN at Donegal.
    We are playing at home! Therefore we must go for
    it from the off show Donegal we wont go down without a fight. I would start Coen up front as FF. He is unreal at the moment. Diarmuid has to start along with Mc Donagh, Kevin Mc and Cillian. Kevin Mc to sweep in front of the Backs and
    provide an additional outlet to Clarke. Hopefully
    Paddy and Keith are fit to start we will need their runs and scores.Stick Diarmuid on Murphy and follow him. Keegan on Mc Hugh and Barrett on Mc Brearty. Durcan to mark Brennan. Boyler and Zippy to attack. If we have our quartet back and
    with a welcome boost of a Rest Mayo can go again and win.
    Mayo team to play Donegal
    Barrett Harrisson. Higgins

    Keegan. Boyle. Durcan
    Kevin Mc

    Ruane. Aido

    Mc Donagh. Diarmaid

    Carr. Coen. Cillian

    Subs bench to come on and win the game
    E O Donoghue
    Mc Cornack
    Mayo must go Direct to win.
    Best of luck to Team and Management.

  25. Here is an idea of the starting team and subs?

    1-David Clarke
    2- Chris Barrett
    3- Brendan Harrison
    4- Keith Higgins
    5- Lee Keegan
    6- Colm Boyle
    7- Paddy Durcan
    8- Seamus O’Shea
    9- Aidan O’Shea
    10- Fionn McDonagh
    11- Cillian O’Connor
    12- Kevin McLaughlin
    13- Andy Moran
    14- Darren Coen
    15- James Carr

    16- Robbie Henneley
    17- Eoin O’Donoghue
    18- Stephen Coen
    19- James McCormack
    20- Michael Plunkett
    21- Donal Vaughan
    22- Diarmuid O’Connor
    23- Ciaran Treacy
    24- Fergal Boland
    25- Conor Loftus
    26- Jason Doherty

  26. Liam2 – Surely the obvious man to play as sweeper is Colm Boyle, since he’s basically been doing the role for the last 5 games!

    I can see Horan playing Keith Higgins at 11, like the 2nd half against Kerry, with him dropping back at times to allow Boyle to sweep. Boland is the most likely forward to lose out. Don’t see Carr or Andy starting this one either.

  27. Liam2, you’d imagine deploying a sweeper would be a no-brainer but our defensive structure has been awful pretty much all championship with the exception of the Galway game. Down and Armagh both had more attempts on goal than us (stats) and Meath had numerous goal chances. Unless management do something about that our run of luck will come to an end.

    Here is a genuine question…when was the last time Mayo came away from a match in Machale park with what could be described as a ‘very good’ performance in league or championship?

  28. Paddy Power:- Dublin 4/6, Kerry 5/1, Tyrone 8/1, Dgal 9/1…. Mayo 16/1

    Ouch. That’s what the country thinks. We were 6/4 to beat dgal a few days ago…That’s gone out to 15/8.

    It’s a long time since we’ve been such outsiders.

  29. Rochford will definitely be letting them in on a few state secrets. Donie Buckley did down in Kerry and it worked very well for them.

  30. Mayo-joe I would agree with that team except I would start Doherty instead of Andy. On a few comments 1. Its vital to start fast and set the tempo for the game. We need to get the 16th man involved from the outset. 2. Have a strategy for the kickouts that dont go short. 3. A.OShea takes up Murphy and Durkin takes McHugh.
    This is going to be a dog eat dog affair so no holding back no regrets no excuses. If durkin and Higgins are fit its going to be close, if D.OConnor is fit very interesting with his running ability and if Ruane available then maybe the ducks are linning up. That being so we need to open up the cannons.

  31. We won’t beat Donegal in a high scoring shootout. While they are much less defensive than in previous years they have an excellent attacking strategy and can kick points for fun. Look at their scoring rate this year. So we have to be tactically astute, need to man mark a few of their top men and provide plenty cover at the back. Their kick out strategy has been top class in contrast to ours so that needs to be worked on as well. But for all the talk about tactics it will ultimately come down to how players perform. We have made lots of basic errors such as in our kick passing, tight marking and even ball handling at times. Lots of our players have been turning in 6 or 7 out of 10 performances so far. In many ways our season echoes 2016 and more especially 2017. We are waiting for the spark and then we will click. Again what can’t be doubted is the resilience and character of the team. Even when not playing that well they are hanging in there and getting over the line. While the media world praises Dublin, Donegal and Kerry( deservedly) for the quality of their football, the old dogs of Tyrone and Mayo have not gone away. Big big game coming up on Saturday week. Up Mayo.

  32. On form its a Donegal win by a large margin. However if O Shea can handle Murphy and he always has in the past and Durkan can keep running with McHugh that only leaves McBrearty and Brennan to watch . McBrearty is very easy marked all that’s needed is to stay close to him and keep a hand in on that left foot as he goes around in the loop and dont give him a shot at goals , Kerry proved that Brennan can be marked out of the game also and they are not known for tight marking.

  33. Theres goals there for us in this game if we focus on Donegals weak points this season, which have been at number 3 and number 6
    They havent settled on a stopper at number 6 and seem to be rotating a number of ball-playing attacking half backs there, also at number 3 Neil McGee isnt the force he once was so they will give you opportunities to attack them up the middle and we have the runners to hurt them.

    Meath, cavan and kerry all got multiple goal chances against them so we need to hurt them there

  34. i would go with durcan on jamie brennan (who seemed fairly rattled at the marking job tom o’sullivan done on him sunday), keegan has to go on ryan mchugh for me, as for Murphy very hard to designate a man marker on him given the free role he has,id say we need to go zonal on him ie if he is around the 40 or drifting inside S Coen picks him up. If he drops into midfield SOS picks him up

  35. Rochford will be letting Donegal management on how Mayo is most likely to target Donegal! What individuals need marking from Mayo perspective and tactics therein. For this reason, Donegal will be well aware of how we will try to neutralise the likes of Murphy, McBrearty and Brennan. They will know how we will go about making the matches, they will know in-depth coaching details on how players tackle the danger men. So, for this reason, we need to change the rules of engagement. Going all out as Kevin stated must be in our armour on the day.

    Donegal plays similiar to ourselves. McBrearty runs punching holes in defences are like Zippy runs. How do we stop those, push out? put pressure on the player with the ball? try to stop the pass? interfere with run i.e. run across? They will be trying to draw free and Murphy will pop those out. Do we allow them to get close for goal attempts and rely on Clarke shot-stopping ability (high risk but we could smoother up there attacks)? If Clarke is in goals than we won’t have a great front foot platform on restarts .. most of his kick-outs will be taken short with longer kicks being turned over. Given how long his kicks hang in the air I surprise he just doesn’t kick into space and allow players to run onto it. That will at least give our guys 50% chance getting it, whereas, when kicking to ourselves our players get caught waiting under the ball to drop and opposition have a run in and invariable turn it over.

    At the end of the day and given how close these two teams are matched … we just need to bring it and score one or more points than them 🙂

  36. Having watched the shenanigans before each throw in this year I have checked the GAA rule book and found no reference to mid fielders not been allowed to brandish ak 47s for the afore mentioned throw in . Of course they would have to dispose of weapons once play progressed.

  37. It does not follow that a high tempo game means a high scoring game. A team should play this way with or without the ball. Need to take Donegal out of their comfort zone. Every player has a method of play or player which they are uncomfortable with its a matter of identifying this and complementing more effectively than the opposition

  38. I’m not too concerned about Rochford being in the Donegal camp it must be tough on him bringing Mayo so agonizingly close to winning Sam and leading our best performance in an all Ireland Final since 51 and now to be plotting our downfall. Personally no matter what I could never plot against my own county no matter what the circumstances. I reckon we will just about beat Donegal but it will be an almighty battle we need the two O’Sheas on song and Darren Coen to chip in with a few points could be a game for James Carr to shine it might be a bit too physical for Boland I’d hold Andy in reserve his strength and ability will be vital in the second half as I think it will come down to the wire

  39. good post! cant disagree with much of that. lets not try and overthink it at this stage – just go for it!

  40. Donegal conceded 1:20 on Sunday, and could (should) have coughed up another goal or two, if Clifford had been more aware.

  41. I’d say Rochford will be delighted to knock us out, not for the players or fans, but for the Co board. It will be bitter sweet for him id say. They absolutely shafted him last year, he deserved a lot more respect imo. I can see a big dose of Karma heading in the direction of a certain chairman come 8pm on August 3rd.

  42. Revellino that thing about the seagulls was the most ridiculous and funniest comment I’ve ever seen on here. Keep them coming.

  43. Good for TG4. Sat 3pm Dublin -v- Mayo in the minors on YOUTUBE Sport TG4
    Also 5pm Galway and Dublin U20

  44. Woolys podcast event will be a good laugh, he can be a bit of a pup and loves to get the crowd going. I’d love to be there but alas…

  45. Btw, folks should take a read of Darragh O’Se’ article in Irish Times yesterday. He appears to be calling on Aido and Leeroy to stand up and be counted…like your team needs you! I’m in agreement with the battle cry.

  46. Friend of mine looking for tickets..( I bought mine on line earlier in the week ) . He said he cant get them in supervalue, centra or on line .. Are they sold out or does anyone have info please.

  47. If we manage to beat Donegal and assuming Dublin beat Tyrone, we will be playing Dublin on Saturday August 10th at 5pm.

  48. Report From Connaught Telegraph on Match Tickets

    The Mayo versus Donegal Super 8s game is a sell-out – at least for now.

    The capacity for the game – which will throw in at 6 p.m. in Elverys MacHale Park, Castlebar, on Saturday, August 3 – has been set at 25,000 for health and safety reasons, but The Connaught Telegraph understands that every effort is being made to get a second game played at the venue that day, which would enable the capacity to be increased to over 30,000.

    The result of all that effort should be known within the next 24 hours.

    In the meantime, fans hoping to secure tickets for the match at the usual retail outlets are being left disappointed.

  49. If Tyrone were to beat Dublin we would be playing Tyrone on Sunday August 11th at 3.30 pm.

  50. After all the warnings to get your tickets as they would sell out, can’t believe people now asking where they can get tickets. They were on general sale so if you could not be arsed to buy them, then watch it on TV.

  51. If Tyrone were to beat Dublin we would still be playing on the sat… versus Tyrone. Group 2 winner v Group 1 runner up is set for the Sat.

  52. @ Justoutsideballagh
    That post of yours is a little harsh .Some of us live from pay cheque to pay cheque and may not have being able to buy them when they came on sale first .

  53. Goodman Walter. What you say there looks correct. I was confused reading it. Saturday @ 5pm if we get by Donegal regardless of how Tyrone and Dublin fare out..

  54. A bit harsh @justoutsidetheballagh I concur with mayomaningalway. I understand the “you snooze you lose” stance but capacity has been reduced greatly in McHale Park and demand from both counties is high understandably. If everyone was on the ball for tickets the day after we beat Meath, we’d need the Maracana to hold us all!

  55. @fearbolg, ah jeez im sorry. I’ll try again,…all our injuries are goin to clear up by tommorow. Rochford will secretly put laxatives in the donegal water bottles just before throw in, we’ll win by 20 points, then hammer the dubs while messing up McMahons little comb over in the process. Then we’ll take on the kingdom in the final and whip them by 15 points, with Lee Roy dancing around Hill 16 donnacha walsh style with sam. The green an red will be blaring over the tannoy as plan B is put into operation 🙂

  56. @Tickets for this Match were actually on Sale before we played Meath… Unreserved seating.. The Mayo News has the latest from John Prenty on the Ticket’s and Capisity issue’s…If it were reserved seating with numbered Seats, and a curtain raiser, apparently over 30K would be allowed… Now genuinely I didn’t measure the area in Fitzgerald Stadium Killarney for the fan’s… But MacHale Park seems bigger and is fa better, and is definitely All Seating, the Seats in the Covered Stand are all numbered.. Over 32K Paid into Fitzgerald Stadium and NOT a safety concern in sight…It was Unreserved Seating, on two low 4×2 Painted Plank’s of wood for the over 6K seated, with Numbers on the Seats.. not relevant in this case for those seated, and it was Unreserved Standing for over 25K standing, all went off without a hitch, there was NO curtain raiser, but in fairness there was excellent entertainment provided the Traditional Irish Music and Dance Show, called ‘Celtic Steps’..It was very well known in advance that this particular Match could easily have a bigger demand for Ticket’s that the 35+K Castlebar can host… Over to you Mr Prenty and Central Council!

  57. Agree with fire and fury but controlled, not gung ho
    If we have 2 of our backs attacking ,their area to be immediately covered by half forwards or CF or one of each.
    We need six defenders in front of Clarke at all times.
    We need to get our matches right particularly Murphy and McHugh and Lee Keegan to be on one or the other, no better man to get in their face, look what he did to Cavanagh and Smith.
    I rember a certain David Drake burying Mc Brearty over the sideline in Ballbofey some time ago where is he now ?
    I would also like to have E O Donoghue in my team going to war.
    It’s time for the newbies to toughen up, take a note from the Kerry newbies and dont be leaving it to Boyle Keegan Higgins etc.
    Welcome to the real world, how many lads would die for that MAYO JERSEY
    Mayo to shade it , good luck to James and team.

  58. I’m trying to work this out but if there are only 25,000 tickets for the match, I am wondering how many tickets will go to Donegal supporters, say 10,000 that leaves 15,000 for Mayo supporters in Mayo and outside, being a knockout home championship game on a Bank Holiday weekend surely the demand will be at least 40,000 for Mayo alone.
    I was able to secure 3 tickets online on Monday night last, no queue, no hassle.

  59. I thought there would be Prenty of tickets but John Plenty must have got his L’s and R’s mixed up and John Plenty has decided there won’t be Prenty of tickets.

    What sort of borroxing is Plenty going on with.

  60. I didn’t catch the first half of the Mayo game on Sunday as I was stuck in a taxi heading in from the airport and the traffic was so outrageous I was very lucky to even get the second half. I don’t want to be too negative but I was very disappointed in the appetite shown by a number of your top players.

    Clarke is master of his net and his square and if his kick outs don’t vastly improve for the donegal game he will have ample opportunity to put on display his impressive array of skills as his kick outs will come right back at him with interest in the form of quick runners or scuds into the danger zone.

    Boyler didn’t just put on the jersey on last Sunday he wore it and he led the team from defense to attack. When he won the ball and charged forward and kicked that inspirational point it was a statement of intent. Thing is that when he first won it Aidan O Shea was telling him to slow down and asking him for the ball, luckily for Mayo he simply ignored him and did what was badly needed and drove the team on.

    I’m not a Mayo man and I know he is held in very high regard up there but I simply couldn’t comprehend how AO Shea wasn’t taken off last Sunday. He was slowing every attack down by carrying the ball into cul de sac’s and playing lateral or backward ball on far too many occasions. That was a negative aspect of his game but what I failed to understand was his total non interest in getting stuck in when the ball was not close to him, he was just ambling around the halfback line with his hands on his hips. I know he is a big unit and he has been on the go for five weeks on the trot but so have many others on that team. Imagine how long he would have lasted on the Tyrone team with the display in the Meath game, there is no way he would have finished the game simply no way. I would expect him and a few others to greatly benefit from the break this weekend and be a very different animal when donegal roll into town as he is vital to your chances going forward. I hope Ruane and O Connor are able for a few minutes ball against donegal as they are vital if ye are to make the semis.

    Andy did as Andy does, he simply demanded ball and led the charge in that second half but I still wouldn’t start him as he will have more to offer when the donegal defense have 40 minutes on the clock. Charging into this game with a gung ho mentality would be naive in my opinion, donegal are very smart with possession and hold the ball well as they advance at pace through the midfield area and will try to force the Mayo backs to give up cheap frees once they pass your 45 for Murphy to feast on. Kerry and donegal played well last Sunday but they both could have lost the game as a result of their attacking football. Young Carr has great pace and a nice mix of confidence in his game, he may we’ll develop a goal chance or two but it’s critical that ye take them. If I had to put money on the game I’d put it on donegal but for some reason I think ye will claw your way out of this one.

    Keegan would be a good foil for Murphy as he is just the kind of player that puts him off his game, he will also benefit from the defensive role Murphy plays and will cause them plenty of grief..

  61. @Gamechanger, .Excellent analysis as usaul, I suspect that AOS wasn’t taken off because our options are very limited at Midfield just ar the moment.. AOS was poor by his own standards in the second half, he was actually better in the first half, but still not great…But I believe that he still isn’t fully recovered from a knock he received in the Armagh Match, hopefully he will be back to his best for Donegal…. Best of luck versus Meath even though I can’t think of a seneario where Kerry won’t qualify for the All Ireland Semifinal!

  62. On the mchale park website it states the capicity of the ground is a 38,000 all seater stadium with the covered stand having a capicity of 10,000.i just cannot understand why they will only allow less than 26,000 to attend.I Heard no talk of health and safety when the mayo team had to play on 5 weeks in a row.hope fully the powers that be will see fit to issue more tickets for the game .MAYO need every single supporter that can go to the match to attend and roar their head off from the start to finish of the game .this is a game the supporters will get the team over the line as winners.

  63. I always try and put a picture with the handle or blog name that people use.

    Some of yea would want to smarten yourselves up a bit.

    I look at the time of the comments as well.
    WJ is a good sleeper. I’d say he’s in bed at 12 and up around 7.30am.

    A lot of yea don’t get up until noon. Yea would want to nip that in the bud fairly lively. Sleeping away to your hearts content and the rest of us up all morning worrying about Donegal.

    There’s a few weisenheimers then operating on Akaskan time posting comments at 3 and 4 in the morning. Their nights prowling over. These are the ones I worry about most.

  64. Revellino They should put you in charge of Sealth and Hafety And then there would be tlenty pickets for everyone

  65. Sure there’s no health and safety at the matches.

    What about Josie that shot out of the house without a bit of breakfeast. Now he’s standing within at the game eating 11 packets of cheese and onion to be followed by a Mars bar and washes the lot down with a club orange. What about his health ?

    And what about peoples nerves. Squeaking out what is supposed to be the national anthem and nothing but the sound of scratched vinyl. What about them poor devileens ?

    And how is the announcer going to doctor the attendace at an all ticket match ? Usually when there is 13,000 at a league game, fair play to him he comes on the mic and informs us” todays attendance is fourteen hundred and twenty six”.

    “Could the owner of 96 MO 1375 please reverse the car off the pitch as it is causing a slight obstruction”?

    Sure didn’t I take me aunty Peggy out of the hospital for a day for herself and thought it would nice to bring her to a match until she got a rasper of a belt off an oneills ball between the 2 eyes. The poor auld creature is in a home for the bewildered now and she doesn’t even want to go to the next match.

    Health and Safety me hole.

  66. Sorry MayoDunphy just saw your post. Good man. When we add sarcasm to negativity we become unstoppable.

  67. Would agree totally with gamechanger aidan was very fustrating to watch against meath.
    In the first half he was constantly looking for the ball deep in our half only to get turned over.
    Several times when clarke had the ball on the tee he had his back to the ball strolling out to midfield.
    Fionn mc made good runs up the middle and never got fed the ball.
    Aidan has proven to be a real leader of this team in the past i just think since the injurys he over thinking things and needs to trust the lads around more.
    I still think we can shade this game but everyone needs to be on there game.
    Mayo need to be very patient in this game and cut out a hell of alot of ball handling errors.
    Turn overs are killing our defence.

  68. Aidos been carrying an injury since the Armagh game.He also got a bad hand injury before ht the last day.If it was any other player he wouldnt be on the the pitch but the fact is that he is too important to us. We’ve had a lot if injuries this year but Aido not starting would be a total disaster.Im hoping the rest will help clear things up,fully fit hes the most influential player in the country and the absolute heartbeat of this team.

  69. All41n14all – that’s a disgraceful pop you’ve made at Aidan in that comment, the offending bit of which I’ve deleted. As FW has pointed out, Aidan’s been carrying an injury for weeks and he picked up a hand injury before half-time in the Meath game, which was one of the first times he’s ever stayed on the ground needing treatment. What Aidan has done for us this year is beyond heroic and he’s deserving of the utmost respect. You’d need to cop yourself on making stupid comments like that about him when you clearly don’t know the full facts.

  70. Fw i agree he is the heart beat of this team but some of his descision making of late is a worry.
    If he uses the lads around him more instead of taking to much on himself like murphy did against kerry.
    There was times against kerry you would swear there was three micheal murphys playing.
    I remember 2 yrs ago in league game in castlebar aidan came on and you could see the fear in the donegal team all over the place.
    We got the result that day and think we will the next if we get the best out of oshea.

  71. Aiden has one poor day because of a hand injury, he could have been taken off or moved to a full forward position, full or corner, as he would pull a good player with him and open up the center for the speedier players.
    Aiden O Shea commands a lot of attention on the field and it is up to James to utilise him according to his fitness or injury level
    Remember Mickie Harte and Peter Canavan in Tryones first All Ireland.
    Do we not have a kicking coach to show Clarke how to direct the ball, I know it is a bit late in the day to do this but it is such an important issue that it should have been addressed years ago.
    All the successful Rugby teams have s kicking coach , like Ronan O Gara in France no longer there now.
    I saw the great Willie Casey Ballina Stephenites coach John Healy the then Ballina goalie, and I wonder did Clarke have the same benefit as John it doesnt look like it.
    It is very annoying to think that our result the next day is based on Clarkes kick outs.
    In any event players should be making themselves more available for the restarts.

  72. Aidan was poor against Meath and was definitely slowing down play. But the harsh truth is that we have very few options in the middle outside of him and Seamie at the moment, what with the injuries to Diarmuid and Ruane.
    Aidan has been carrying an injury since the Armagh game and seemed to sustain another injury to his wrist after an awkward fall in the Meath game.
    Still though, I believe he hasn’t been playing to the same level since we lost Matthew Ruane. They had developed a good relationship in midfield and I think Aidan is struggling without him.

  73. Wj im not in the habit of having pops at players
    If you read what i said i didnt make any accusations on aidan.
    I have the highest respect for the man.
    If you cant have an opinion on here what the point.
    Was at the game and some of the plays he made were crazy stuff.
    He put in a great shift as he always does.

  74. Yes you did, All41n14all. I read it and then I deleted it. There’s no problem – as you well know – in expressing opinions here but what’s posted has to be fair and reasonable. The bit I deleted from your comment was neither.

  75. Fair enough wj.
    He would be my first name on the team sheet.just think he is trying to do to much,
    Less is more and all that stuff.
    I know he is carrying injuries the more reason to use the help around him.
    For me he is the best tackler in the modern game.

  76. Did Aido not catch last ball into square before fulltime?
    Come on everyone we would be lost without the Big man.
    Rest easy this week and big game coming.
    Don’t know about the players but im glad of week end off.
    Hows the cricket going?

  77. Aidan is critical to the success of the team. He’s the equivalent of the army that have with that heavy artillery piece, that draws a lot of fire and because of its influence, the enemy must neutralize.

    But I believe in some small way, our enemies are urging him on. I have family in Dublin, Cork and Kerry, they all praise him yet are critical of his decision making.

    I believe Darragh O’Se in some small way is putting a challenge up to Aidan (and Lee) in his Irish Times article this past Tuesday. Now Darragh is of course a Kerry man, but at the same time, he’s a footballer and he knows greatness when he see’s it. I think he actually wants Aido to be great and get the award he so deserves.

  78. I don’t think I have ever criticized Aidan O Shea in my life and I don’t think I ever will. As said earlier
    He’s clearly carrying an injury and he got injured in the first half of the match last Sunday. I don’t know how he keeps going he gets dogs abuse on the pitch and very little protection from referees who unfairly sees him as a big man who can look after himself. If one of us on here took the hits he does every match we wouldn’t be able to walk let alone play football The day he’s taken off or goes off injured we’ll be in big trouble. For what it’s worth I expect a big performance from us against Donegal it will be close and tight but we’ll get by.

  79. No comments about Aidan Oshea until gamechanger10 throws in a skud and waits for the reaction. Just read it all back!

  80. In the last 2 games it looked as though there were some players on the pitch who seemed to be content with merely tippin about. But isn’t that the way it always is nearly. I was watching Roscommon-v-Kerry last night in the 1980 all Ireland and I could say that the great Dermot Early could have spent most of his time more productively sitting on the sideline such was the poor contribution he made and you could add a few more in as well even though you wouldn’t thank them to have won that game by 4 or 5 pts. So, what goes on goes on and forever will.

  81. tony to be fair i raised similar points to gamechanger in a seperate thread and got a similar reaction.
    Gamechanger is generally a good man to chip in with opinions from the outside, and i like to hear the view from other counties too.

    I think its fair enough that we scrutinize individual performances within reason, i am also off the opinion that AOS has been playing very poorly now since the Roscommon game, i think that is a fair speak. Now whether that is down to form or injury the point still stands we need him at full tilt for donegal.

    If its just form i have no doubt he will rise it again for donegal as he has a habit of doing against that opposition (i still maintain his 2013 qf performance v donegal was his greatest hour in a mayo shirt).
    If its injury then he shouldnt have been on the field for every minute of those games then, none of the rest of the top teams would carry an injured player.
    I have no doubt he will be back to his best for the donegal game though and a weekend off will do him the world of good

  82. @Supermac, Yes, I agree he was a weapon of mass destruction that day, he had a point to prove…I sense we will see this again…very soon. I want him when he’s pissed off.

  83. Looking as an outsider it seems that all certain players on the Mayo team are above being dropped demoted etc.If Aidan O’Shea is injured and got a hand injury last week then why wasn’t he taken off? I thought he was very poor. At some stage he has to be taken off. He is doing himself or his team no favours. The man looks absolutely shattered and wasn’t moving freely at all the last few weeks. I know you are light in midfield etc but, you have to protect the player from himself as well. Its not a pop at Mayo etc and I get ye have been on the go for 5 weeks with injuries etc. But, whats the point in running Aidan O’Shea and a few more into the ground and hopefully making a semi where the tank is empty as there will only be 7 days between donegal game and semi final.

    David Moran could have played last week for Kerry but, it was decided to give him a break as potentially he would be out two weeks in a row.Given his know injuries and his tendinitis issues they decided to rest him. I suppose the injuries to the other midfielders have meant he cant be given a break.

  84. @Supermac I played my last Senior Championship Club match about 20 years ago am I think for the last 18 months or so I was carrying some sort of niggle of other, it was only 12 months after retiring that I finally cleared up a troublesome shoulder injury.

    I fully expect that most inter county players ( if you ever asked them ) are never 100% happy with their fitness and expect Aido to have some strapping next week on that injured hand (dislocated finger)?

  85. A bit off topic . We have all this rushing of the inter county season now , games crammed up to make way for a first week in September all Ireland final and this is all in line for club championship time . How long are Galway out of championship now and I’m pretty sure they have yet to play club championship games as of yet . I find the whole thing a farce , the bullshit people go on with .

    It is absolutely ridiculous the amount of games we have had to play consecutively, they are amateur sportsmen ffs.

  86. Fair play to Aidan o’shea.
    When all our other midfielders were lost through injury he has soldiered on, playing for his team even carrying his own knocks. We have taken out some decent teams recently and with no disrespect to any other players, Aidan was the only recognised midfielder we had on the pitch.

    Had Aidan not continued, I’m certain our 2019 championship would have been dead and buried some games ago.

    I don’t think our medical support should be doubted either. The man would not be risked if it was felt that he was going to further aggravate any injury.

    Aidan is a brilliant role model and has been pointed out many times on this blog by quite a few people he must be the most disciplined player in the country.

    Somebody remarked recently about his contribution on the scoreboard. His performances and his ability to strip ball from the opposition has taken alot of scores away from opposing teams.

    Instead of picking at his performances we should be praising him for battling on even with the niggles he has been carrying.

    I admire him even more now for having put his body on the line week in and week out these last 5 weeks for his team and his county.

  87. Aidan from Kerry – it was explained why he wasnt dropped. Because we have no discernible midfield without him. The options are play eith one midfielder or play with none, so we played with one. We’re still in it and if he wasnt there, I dont think we would be.

  88. @dreamysleepynightysnoozysnooze But to be brutally honest he is so shagged at the moment you have no midfield with him anyway. He should have been taken off in Killarney and given a break. I hope he has a great game against Dublin but, if he continues to be as laboured as he is Mayo are going to have to develop some sort of strategy to at least give him a 2 -3 min break at times during games. Even move ho, to full forward for a few mins. There is no point flogging him and having no midfielder left

  89. Tony Hannon,
    You seem to be suggesting that I am trying to agitate the agenda by posting my views on last Sunday’s game. I can assure you that I am merely making an honest observation on what I deemed to be a glaring issue. Games are won by the players individual and collective performance on the field in every championship game. Some players develop big reputations over the years and without doubt they get a pass on occasion as the expectation of one of those inspirational or magical moments that change games hangs in the minds of both management and supporters. Perhaps it results in the dice being thrown once too many times at the end of a loosing run.

    O Shea is a great player no doubt and in 2013 I was shouting as loudly as any mayo man when he bulled his way through donegals china shop on that special day. He was immense and I have no doubt he will regain his form again and I hope the rest will allow a sufficient recharge of his batteries as he is a very pivotal player for Mayo. The critical issue here is that Mayo management field the best players available to them based on training ground showing and their particular skillsets suitability to their game plan to take on donegal. In essence form and application wins games not reputations.

  90. Kerry bucks in here awful concerned about Mayo . Really hoping mayo push through to a semi final v dubs , get everyone back cause upset of the century and beat them , everyone chatting about mayo in the build up to final and up sneak Kerry for another smash n grab .

    For the record I don’t think anything like that will happen , donegal will beat us handy and Dublin will win the all Ireland and I hope they humiliate Kerry in the final.

  91. Lads, Gamechanger10 has been posting here through good times and through bad so I ain’t gonna attack him. He’s a gent.

    Aidan in Kerry, I kind or agree where you are coming from..Aidan has been poor of late but he’s literally our only midfielder. I would be critical of Aidan at times, but at the minute we are snookered. I was one of those who voted for Ruane for our player of the league because of his impact and the drive and attacking power he gave us. His loss has put so much more pressure on Aidan..with Seamus back maybe Aidan can be released of that pressure.

    For me, we have to shut down Murphy, McBrearty, Brennan and McHugh. Kerry showed us a few options for that

  92. Hi, Anyone who finds fault or offers advice with Aidan O Shea’s contribution to Mayo Footall must be a bitter sick soul individual or maybe just ignorant of his tireless contribution in all kinds of weather over the years.

    I respectfully suggest you find something else to complain about.

  93. There seems to be lots of ppl taking things personal offense. Ffs, grow up lads and stick to the facts, without getting emotional, from a Kerry man (allegedly) throwing some jibes at us Mayo folk.

  94. Lol at ciaran2. Overreacting much?
    Let’s just never scrutinise any of the players ever again shall we? 10/10 ratings for all from now on eh

  95. I think Aiden from Kerry has a fair point….If Mathew Ruane, Tom Parsons or Diarmuid O Connor were available, Maybe just Maybe AOS would have been rested? … James Horan could not have foreseen that AOS would pick up a hand Injury versus Meath, hopefully not too bad… The difference between David Moran not playing for Kerry and AOS playing for Mayo last Sunday was I suspect that Mayo had to Win to stay in the Championship, and Kerry did not I think…..We got to plan for another Must Win Seneario versus Donegal, Fingers Crossed our Injury Crisis will lessen before next Saturday…. We’ll see what happens and who’s available at about 5.45 PM next Saturday Week, Somewhere between 25 and 35 thousand of us!

  96. Sean Burke,
    It’s 9.50am where I’m sitting and I haven’t yet gotten rid of this awful bloody jet lag but your comment has woken me up a little. I think you shouldn’t resort to such disrespectful generalizations when commenting about the people of Kerry. The “Animals“ jibe that Padí made all those years ago was absolutely and totally in reference to the demand for victory and the pressure it brought to bear on both the players and management.

    I have sat beside very ignorant and arrogant people at club games in Kerry and I have cringed when I hear them or those of their ilk at inter county games displaying all the failures of human nature. In saying that I can’t say that we have a higher representation of these clowns than any other top team out there, I’m sure plenty of Galway, mayo and Roscommon supporters had rather unfortunate experiences in this years Connaught championship visited on them by supporters in their proximity.

    Those individuals let themselves down on a given day Sean, they can perhaps lift their hand and say they just get over emotional or over excited at games, perhaps they have witnessed their own mother or fathers behavior at games and felt this is acceptable ?? I know I don’t

    Now Sean you always seem to have a negative mindset before Mayo play big games and usually focus on their inability rather than their strength and ability. You almost come across as the Scottish Dads Army character that had the life motto of “Were Doomed”.
    There is no game unfolding as we text and no reason for irrational comments or adrenaline fueled insults which I would associate with such comments at a live game.

  97. Ah this place would drive ya mad. Aidan is now (somehow) the new villain of the week amongst some posters. The man has been nothing short of a colossus for us this past few weeks. He’s carrying an injury and clearly sprained his wrist in that 1st half, yet battled on, showing a complete disregard for his own health. He’s about 6’4 and id say about 85Kg, carrying 2 injuries now, and playing 5 weeks in a row, cut the man some slack.

    I’d also agree with Sean Burkes post above, he hit the nail on the head again.

  98. I don’t why people are so critical of o Shea I wonder how we would manage without him on Saturday

  99. You can’t expect Aidan O Shea to be brilliant in every game. For me he has been the most consistent player for Mayo this year. I would have rested him and a others against Kerry. Not being defeatest but we never going to win in Killarney. I do believe that he’s been carrying an injury for a few weeks and the two weeks break for the Donegal game will do him the world of good. What we need to do between now and then is how to stop Donegals runners. I was knocked down about my thoughts earlier but I do believe playing a sweeper between center back and the full back line would help. Playing boyler as center back but having that extra protection behind him I think is a must. And a two man full forward line with Andy who is the man in form and Carr for pace I feel would be devastating. Darren Coen has been exceptional but looked tired against Meath and if he’s not injured would be a great option to bring on

  100. Sean Burke – that pop at the Kerry lads was unwarranted and uncalled for. People from other counties who comment here in a fair-minded way are always welcome to do so without being subjected to uncouth responses like that. You’d need to wind your neck in a bit or else you’ll be headed for a stint in cold storage. Given the stuff you’ve been posting here of late it might be the best place for you.

  101. We would not be facing into last super 8 game without Aidan, anyone who thinks so must not have witnessed all the games where he has saved us. And to continue with injuries shows the dedication to team and county.

    That’s on top of the dog’s abuse he gets on the pitch, at every game. Beyond me how he stays so disciplined. Thank God for this rest this w’end for Aiden and the guys.
    Think we’d all need to rest our heads until sat aug 3rd.

  102. How lucky we are to have Aiden. What a player and leader – played all league and every championship game and so much is expected of him especially without Matty and Diarmuid. Constant abuse then at every game (I dont know how he sticks it).He got a right nasty wrist jnjury and played on. I feel he also misses Robbie’s kickouts with them playing together all their lives .

  103. I always enjoy Gamechangers posts and contributions on here and I’d be of the opinion Mayo are the last thing on Kerry’s mind right now they beat us out the gate a few weeks ago when they had to. I can see gamechangers point of view about resting Aidan but we can’t afford to as we don’t have many options in midfield and in my opinion Aidan never really lets us down maybe there’s just too much expected from him like Ciaran McDonald and Liam McHale before him? Let’s just concentrate on the Donegal game and see what happens.

  104. I see gamechangers point. I don’t think we were ever going to win that Kerry game and a 10 point drubbing was fairly reflective of our performance and theirs. To me it would have made imminent sense to rest Aiden that day and give Mikey Murray and a few others a taste, albeit a bitter one, of serious championship football. He’s a brilliant player and leader but it’s unfair to load so much on his shoulders and expect him to always deliver. He’s an amateur and a bloody brilliant one at that. So too is the whole Mayo team/panel. Let’s be positive and encouraging. What you think about you bring about. I’m always thinking of winning. Mayoforever. Maigheo go deo.

  105. Not going to criticize the players no matter what. AOS is the man — he has played damn near every minute of every game this championship and was widely acknowledged as the best one or two in the national league. He plays tired and hurt and has shouldered more and more responsibility as the injuries mounted. The season would be a distant memory at this point without him. Hoping for another Herculean effort next week that gets the desired outcome (but if not it won’t be for a lack of trying). Btw it’s only 7pm here in US!

  106. You can watch the minor match in the US through the link while your eating your corn flakes Not Half Fast.

  107. Time to calm down all round. While Aiden has not been outstanding in the last few games , overall he has been extremely good for Mayo both this year and in the past. He seems to take huge responsibility on his shoulders and remember he has been captain for last two games in the absence of Diarmaid and Paddy. Secondly Game changer comes across as a genuine Kerry supporter who makes very valid points on this blog. His comment about Aiden was an honest appraisal and should not be seen as a criticism. Finally yes some Kerry supporters made idiots of themselves with their booing and jeering.Some Galway and Roscommon supporters have done likewise while the Dubs have a hill full of that type of fan.And what about Mayo. Well sometimes I cringe when I hear what some of them have to say and how they behave not alone targeting the opposition but picking on their own players as well. The point I am trying to make is that every county has their fair share of idiot supporters, us included. Having said that the vast majority of fans from all counties are genuine, good humoured and passionate about their team. There’s a small minority in all counties who would do a greater service to all if they stayed at home or at least didn’t make fools of themselves when attending games.

  108. Hear Hear to win just once! I think you hit the nail on the head! Keep posting your views gamechanger and other posters outside the county. It’s what makes williejoes blog so good!

  109. Sorry Axelm are you sayin we should have rested Aidan for the game from the start or taken him off? If you mean rested for the full game then absolutely not…we went down there to win obviously and needed leaders. But maybe we could have given him a seat from midway through second half onwards.

  110. @To win just once… I can’t disagree with you there…. Hit the nail on the Head, overwhelming I have the earphones in and the Radio on, Wheather it be local or National at Mayo Match’s I go to, and I find I never get involved with verbals with opposition Supporter’s… I love the noise, the anticipation, the nerves, the music if there is music, and I think that there should always be music before a big Match, I even love the opposition Supporter’s supporting their team…. I love the banther and the craic, we have more in common than we might like to admit sometimes …But there are lines that shouldn’t be crossed…. I still love going to game’s and have done since I was s teenager, thumping a lift to a Connacht Final in the Hyde Park, you get a lift the rest of the way by a Rossies? who once was similar to you, thumbing a lift to Castlebar for a Connacht Final a few years before, they tell you that they once got a lift to Castlebar from Ballyhaunis and so it goes…. I done it all in the day’s you could actually thumb a lift, I met them all. More good than bad, why can’t we all be better,?

  111. While I find Sean Burke’s pessimism a bit annoying at times, he’s dead right about rushing the games. A total farce forcing teams to play several high intensity championship matches week after week, for what?
    I guarantee there will be fuck all club football played earlier this year compared to pre 2018 era when AI finals were in September.
    Total own goal by gaa to have AI semis on same weekend too in both codes.
    To be honest, there’s so much wrong about Gaa structures and governance in general at the moment that I’m seriously disillusioned and concerned for the future of our games and will probably post in more detail later in the year about it, when the season is over.

  112. Definitely agree with you Larry Duff about the structure of the championship This week cramping the 2 hurling semi finals on consecutive days. Next week last of the Super 8s followed by a 6 day turnaround for one county before they play the AI Semi. Almost looks as if the GAA want to get the championship out of the way so we can relax and snooze as the Premier League gets up and running in the UK. Back to First and Third Sundays in September for GAA showpieces please

  113. “Back to First and Third Sundays in September for GAA showpieces please”

    100% agree .

  114. There has been a lot of talk on here about David Clarks kick outs. What I see is that he “hangs” rather than “drills” then. There can be problems with both styles. The hanging kick out gives players a chance to compete. The drilled kick out has to be pin point accurate. So the question for Saturday is can our outfield players compete for the hanging ball. If they can we have a good chance of winning, if the can’t well we’re f***ed.

    On the debate of Hennelly versus Clark I would like to remind people that the player wearing the No. 1 jersey is called the”Goalkeeper ” not the “kicker outer”. With this in mind I for one have no doubt who my No. 1 is.

    Best of luck next Saturday, I know that everyone of the team and subs will be willing to die out there on the pitch and hopefully we will be heading to a semi final in a couple of weeks.

  115. We need to go out there and let Donegal know we mean Business.
    None of this kickout nonsense.
    And no letting them back in if we are ahead
    Hopefully Durcan is back and maybe Diarmuid.
    I’d put Keegan on Murphy and Harrison on McBrearty.

  116. Aiden O’Rourke’s article on RTE Today is priceless. He is already talking about Donegal’s next game in Croke Park without even mentioning Mayo once in the article. Great Stuff Roll On Saturday looking forward going into this game as no hopers that’s when The Green & Red are most dangerous.

  117. So Sky get the match. The GAA are a f***ing disgrace. RTÉ to show Tyrone v Dublin, a match of little or no consequence, whereas the game in Castlebar will be the only significant one of all four this weekend although Meath v Kerry could still have a influence, but guess who is showing that one also.. Oh but wait, I forgot Dublin have to play outside the Capital ,outside the Country even God forbid so the National broadcaster must be duty bound to televise the team from the Capital.

  118. So Sky get the match. The GAA are a f***ing disgrace. RTÉ to show Tyrone v Dublin, a match of little or no consequence, whereas the game in Castlebar will be the only significant one of all four this weekend although Meath v Kerry could still have a influence, but guess who is showing that one also.. Oh but wait, I forgot Dublin have to play outside the Capital ,outside the Country even, God forbid, so the National broadcaster must be duty bound to televise the team from the Capital.

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