Four changes for Cork clash

The team to face Cork on Sunday (throw-in 2pm) was named a short while ago tonight and, not surprisingly, there are some changes from the side that started in that dismal showing up in Ballyshannon last Sunday.

It is, perhaps, a bit of a surprise that there are only four changes from the Donegal game and it looks as if at least one of these – Colm Boyle for Kevin Keane – is an enforced one. The other three are Knockmore’s Shane McHale (making his NFL debut) for Richie Feeney and, in a reshaped forward line,¬†Cillian O’Connor and Michael Conroy come in for Conor Mortimer and Enda Varley.

The more you look at it, the more surprising this selection becomes. Okay, Kevin Keane appears to be ill and Colm Boyle is well due a start but the Davitts man is an out-and-out half-back and has the scars to show from his unhappy time at corner-back in 2008. Let’s hope this is only a stop-gap measure.

Shane McHale has been on the bench for a good while but has never even been called into action as a sub before during this league campaign and he has only ever played in a few FBD matches. It’s a brave enough move by James to give him a start at wing-back where he’ll be up against no less a player than Fintan Goold.

I think everyone expected some changes at midfield (I certainly did), a sector where, in James Horan’s own words, we got “smashed” in Ballyshannon. If Aido were available he would, of course, be starting but he’s not and the big brother and big Barry can count themselves lucky to be lining out there again together. By contrast, eternal sub Jason Gibbons can consider himself a bit hard done by to be warming his posterior on the bench yet again.

It’s good to see Cillian back in action, good to see him at 11 too but flanked as he is by Kevin McLoughlin and Alan Dillon we’re once again creating the risk (likelihood?) that we won’t have enough incisiveness and will lack direction as we move the ball forward.

I’m delighted to see Michael Conroy back in the first fifteen but is it really wise to drop both Conor Mortimer and Enda Varley at the same time? After all, they have between them racked up more than 50% of our scores since the league started.

So, plenty of questions then. Let’s hope we’ll see a few emphatic answers once the ball is thrown in at McHale Park. Here’s the full list:

Mayo (NFL Division One v Cork, 25/3/2012): David Clarke (Ballina Stephenites); Colm Boyle (Davitts), Ger Cafferkey (Ballina Stephenites), Keith Higgins (Ballyhaunis); Lee Keegan (Westport), Donal Vaughan (Ballinrobe), Shane McHale (Knockmore); Seamus O’Shea (Breaffy), Barry Moran (Castlebar Mitchels); Kevin McLoughlin (Knockmore), Cillian O’Connor (Ballintubber), Alan Dillon (Ballintubber); Alan Freeman (Aghamore), Andy Moran (Ballaghaderreen), Michael Conroy (Davitts). Subs: Robert Hennelly (Breaffy), Eoghan Reilly (Castlebar Mitchels), Kevin Keane (Westport), Peadar Gardiner (Crossmolina), Danny Geraghty (Ballintubber), Jason Gibbons (Ballintubber), Pat Harte (Ballina Stephenites), Jason Doherty (Burrishoole), Aidan Campbell (Swinford), Conor Mortimer (Parnells, Dublin), Enda Varley (Garrymore), Evan Regan (Ballina Stephenites).¬†


35 thoughts on “Four changes for Cork clash

  1. Strange team. There must not be much confidence in the likes of Reilly if Boyle is getting a start in the corner. Strange to throw in both McHale and Boyle on the same occassion but they are worth a try. Not sure you will get the best out of O’Connor at centreforward especially gainst the likes of Cork where you would expect a lot of the half forward lines time will be spent tracking back-I wouldve thought we need him as near as possible to the fourteen, in and around Moran as chances will no doubt be at a premium. After all the negativity of the last few weeks hopefully Horan has managed to instill some confidence back in the players. They need a good performance and we all need a lift so the aim should be to get stuck into them from the first whistle and show a bit of pride because if the heads drop early we will be in serious bother. We’ll see how it pans out, the only way is up?!

  2. With this team again we are on a hiding. I dont agree with Ukgael that Reilly is Mayo senior football quality. We have enough backs. Again midfield is a joke. Jason Gibbons should be given a starting position after the Ballyshannon wipeout.
    Our half forward line is not an answer for Sunday.
    Dillon to slow to release ball. O’Connor not fit or good enough for centre foreward. Delighted he got rid of Mortimer.
    My team would be based on team picked and subs,
    Clarke,Boyle, Cafferky,Higgins, Keegan, Vaughan McHale, O,Sea,Gibbons,McLaughlin, Freeman, A Moran, Conroy, B Moran, Conroy.

  3. Paddy I would agree with your selection, big men down the middle, Cafferky, Vaughan, O’Sea,Gibbons, Freeman,Moran,

  4. Not a bad team paddy but you have conroy selected twice. I presume you meant o Connor, and yes 15 is the lads best position.

    I thought Jason gibbons deserved to start this game after the mauling the middle sector got against Donegal. It’s an average team picked by JH but in all honesty it’s a weakened squad that we have. I have little confidence in alot of the guys on the bench. I am very deflated after the u21 game so I’m living in hope that Mayo perform to the best of their ability on Sunday. Thats all that supporters want. Pride, passion, hard work and a never say die attitude would help too! Good luck to the team.

  5. I hear the 2 Feeneys have been suspended from the panel and Nallan has walked. Anyone else hear this ???

  6. Its time to give Conroy a start. McHale was good in the FBD especially against Roscommon. He deserves his chance too.Midfields is our major problem. In fairness J.H. is trying them all. It will be difficult to beat Cork on tomorrow even though the game is in Castlebar. Let’s hope and if you belong to a religion that prays then do so.

  7. Sunday is going to be very interesting.I would imagine a winner like Counihan is still very pissed at losing to us last year so Cork should be up for this one.Theyre a far superior team to us in terms of skill and their size alone will make us look like an u-16 team.Dont be surprised to see Cora Staunton summoned from the crowd at half time to show our lads how to kick points.On the other hand if Cork treat it just like another league game to try some different things in preparation for championship then we might sneak a win and all the cracks will be papered over and some fans will believe again that we will be a force come August.

  8. Truemayo – I gather that the report about the two Feeneys being suspended from the panel is correct and neither are listed among the subs for tomorrow. I can’t verify one way or the other the one about James Nallen (and you’re not the first to raise it this week) but I think the position on that may become clearer tomorrow.

  9. With the inner destruction the last 2 weeks and the rumours we heard about during the week what would a thrashing mean for Horan on Sunday? Massive game. And thats the bottom line cos Stone Cold says so

  10. Very much off topic here, but I just want to share the good news coming from Tuam today, the St Josephs Foxford, senior team has won the All-Ireland Senior “C” Championship today by 3 points. Well done to all concerned.

  11. best of luck to mayo tomorrow. hopefully the rumoured turmoil within has been sorted and its business as usual where mayo play hard and give cork and co something to chew on.

  12. is james nallen gone nice stong team i was hard on the mort but he only slows the team down

  13. Well, you got your wish Caitriona, let’s see if we perform better without him. I have my doubts on that score but hope I’m wrong. See earlier comment re James Nallen – there’s no confirmation of any kind as yet that he has stepped down.

  14. you see the big team dublin keery cok all havr stong lads who can kick a ball thats i could be wrong

  15. Mayo have won 3 out of 4 of our last competitive matchs V Corl [ I think) so let’s keep it up

  16. Truemayo,I brought up the Nallen rumour wednesday morning but i was shot down here because you cannot criticise the mayo management here.I got the information from a very well positioned source and not only that it was reported on two regional radio stations throughout the day on wednesday.As early as the London game last year it was rumoured that neither Martin Connolly or Paul Jordan were been consulted on anything despite one been the trainer and the other a selector.So it was no surprise that the two left.Martin Connolly has been involved in county teams for many many years before James Horan and deserved better.I also got word yesterday that Cian O Neill is having a too dominant role in proceedings and Nallen has seen his input diminshed which isnt sitting well and rightly so.Willie joe,i know we dont see eye to eye on many things football which is fine and you have an excellent site here.You very condescendingly shot me down when i mentioned the Nallen thing.Believe me i not trying to be sinister and i think guys here should be privy to information anyone gets.If rumour or speculation werent courted we’d have a very boring existence.Anyway,the one thing thats clear is that there is something going on behind the scenes thats not helping the players and thats the worrying thing right now.

  17. Brighton – you brought the rumour up without providing any corroboration at all and you’ll recall that I’ve had to delete comments you made previously because of the content of them. I reserve the right at all time to moderate the site how and when I like. It’s my gaff, I make the rules.

    And as for your claim that “you cannot criticise the Mayo management” here, I won’t gratify such a nonsensical remark with a reply.

  18. Ah Wollie don’t take it personally..I’d love to divulge the source because it would lend serious credence to the claims but it wouldn’t be fair to the person in question.

  19. Where does those results from tonight leave us? I guess it will become clearer tomoro.

  20. i see the county board have confirmed senior league to start on the 15th april, despite the nfl semis down for that sun. it would seem they have abandoned all hope of us getting there. if i were on the county panel that would piss me off. we have 4 pts on the board with another 6pts still up for grabs with 2 out of 3 games at home. dispite our poor form and serious stuff going on in the camp its still possible. keep the faith.

  21. Mayomagic, it leaves us and Laois facing the drop unfortunately. No pressure lads.

  22. As things stand ourselves, Donegal and Laois are together on 4 points at the bottom but we’re ahead of both because we have a better points difference (and it’s score difference rather than head-to-head as it’s a three-way tie). Laois (who are away to Kerry tomorrow) and Donegal both have home matches in the final round, with Laois at home to Down and Donegal at home to Armagh. If both lose (unlikely, especially Donegal – they’d have to be favourites to take Armagh in Ballybofey) we could stay up even if we lose our remaining three games but only if our points difference remains better than Donegal and Laois (but we have to play Cork, Dublin and Kerry so our points difference is likely to deteriorate). The bottom line remains that we have to get something out of these three games and, to be honest, if we don’t we’ll deserve to get relegated as we’ll have then lost five matches out of seven.

  23. paddy i agree with some of ur selection big men down the middle for power i have keane keegan vaughan a o shea moran freeman

  24. Rumours are dangerous. They should be confirmed or denied quickly because they undermine the whole show. If James Nallen has walked then it is a bad day for Mayo – equally if the Feeneys have been suspended. Certainly something is wrong.
    I worry that there could be a bit of ‘macho- management’ going on. I was concerned when Aidan Kilcoyne and Tom Parsons were excluded form the panel. Can anyone say that they have been replaced by better players? I was also puzzled as to why Martin Connolly and Tom Jordan dropped out or were dropped.
    I cannot understand why Cian O Neill has such a prominent role.
    I really hope James Horan can turn this around. It is a huge leadership challenge for him. Not wishing to be pessimistic I have my doubts that he can because when this type of thing starts it is like a cancer.
    Sunday will tell a lot – I hope it is not a tale of complete meltdown.

  25. Willie, can we call you “Wollie” from now on, as per brightons comment above? It has a certain ring to it!

    Would be great if you could get a chatbox added to the site where we can idly speculate without it being recorded :p

  26. oh good God, after a small bitten of hope last season the wheels start to come off. Yes, its early days etc etc but long years of experience have taught me that there is no smoke without fire and when we have a small bit of smoke in mayo the whole fecken bog usually goes up unfortunately.

  27. lol, all joke,n aside at some games watched tha closely n was right bhind dugout n ballinrobe at fbd game n for all 2nd half nallen stood back n never got involed at all not a word tween emself n horan so no smoke withou fire[we see today] As for feeneys i think i know wa tha,s about u can,t do much aroun c,bar at tha best times.Anyway we r wer we are n need a big performance today from our county n lets all get bhind them.thers enough ass….. out ther tha love see,n us come on maigheo abu le cunadh de..up tha green above tha reds …always.

  28. I’d say that Boyle and McHale will switch as that would make more sense although the numbering would suggest that Boyle is a replacement for Keane.
    On the rumours, I think it is never good to have these goings-on at any stage. It’s all a far cry from the impression of togetherness and clear thinking epitomised in the Cork game when Nallen was conveying messages after twenty minutes that changed the flow of that game.

  29. Oh God johno,mo on tour; sssstop tttthat bbbbiteeeeen tttttttalkkkkkkkkkk or wwwwwwww’lll aaal be aaaaaaat iit

  30. On a more serious note…….we are in a bit of a crisis………apparently there are two words in Chineese for crisis…….one is Danger the other is opportunity
    There is a real danger today that we will slide further down a slippery slope. There is also an opportunity to get us back on track and drive upwards! Lets hope the lads take the opportunity. Good luck to all today.

Leave a Reply

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