Game day – it’s a high stakes homecoming

It’s here – the day that’s been pencilled in so many diaries for the last number of months, the match everyone said was the real focus when both ourselves and Galway were playing our final few respective League matches, the game that could make or break either of us this year. Yes, it’s here and it’s happening today.

Unlike our last three Championship meetings, this isn’t a knockout tie. Whichever of us comes off second best later on today will get a second chance in this year’s Championship, albeit via what’s set to be a short but extremely unforgiving qualifier campaign.

Despite this safety net, the stakes are high for this meeting at MacHale Park, out on the newly redeveloped pitch, which today will be used in a competitive game for the first time since the works were completed.

Our record at the venue in recent times isn’t hectic, though we did something to rectify that – even if it was against modest enough opposition – last year. But we haven’t beaten Galway at MacHale Park in the Championship since way back in 2014 and they’ve had two Connacht SFC wins over us on our home turf since then. In that sense, we owe them one or two.

But Galway must equally feel they owe us too. Following our dominance over them as we racked up five Nestor Cup wins in a row, they then beat us three years in succession before we turned the tables on them once more. If we win again today, that’ll be four Connacht matches on the spin we’ve come out on top against them.

We’re heading into this one, though, with enormous worries over injuries. The loss of both Robbie Hennelly and Paddy Durcan is huge and, with doubts over the form of both Kevin McLoughlin and Conor Loftus and the fitness of Eoghan McLaughlin and Cillian O’Connor, you’d have to wonder how many changes we’ll make to the named team before David Coldrick throws the ball in at 4pm.

Galway, by comparison, come to Castlebar today in rude enough health on the injury front. Sure, they’ve lost their goalie and the influential full-back Sean Mulkerrins but, aside from that, they have most of their heavy hitters on board and they’ll be aiming to hit us hard this afternoon.

Our display in the League final three weeks ago was alarmingly bad. While Galway didn’t take the kind of tanking we did that day at Croke Park, they did still come undone against Roscommon in the Division Two decider and this means they’re heading into today’s game seeking to avoid a third loss on the trot.

Can we both discount our respective poor form late on in the League? We could have been training heavily towards the end of the campaign, shifting our focus once our top tier status had been secured, while they may have done something similar, though only once promotion was in the bag.

But there can be no discounting done today. This is, after all, the date we’ve all had in our heads as one to remember, as a Championship clash to savour.

I find it hard to predict how this one might go. Our injury list weakens us and this certainly leaves us vulnerable. This is all the more so if, as expected, Galway roll out the shawl on the resplendent new playing surface this afternoon, looking to frustrate us and break up our running game.

At the same time, though, we know they have their own issues, especially in their back line, and so if we show intent and attack at will early on, we could profit from this. It would also have the added benefit of forcing them out from behind their protective blanket and opening up the contest from our point of view.

If I’m forced to choose, I have to plump for us, in a large part with my heart but also with my head. Despite our travails towards the end of the League campaign, our form in the early rounds this spring, playing much harder opposition than they did, was pretty okay. If we perform at that level today – and you’d be expecting, if anything, a much higher level of performance from us in this one – you’d have to think that would be enough to secure the win we need. Here’s hoping we get it.

Safe travelling all who are on the roads today. It still seems way too early in the year for Championship football but that’s what it is. It’ll be great to be back in what could be a packed MacHale Park today. It’ll be even better if we celebrate our Castlebar homecoming with a win over the neighbours.

Okay, then, let’s get to work. Let’s get this high-stakes opener out of the way. Let’s beat Galway. Up Mayo.

135 thoughts on “Game day – it’s a high stakes homecoming

  1. En route to Gatwick.

    Nerves are definitely building now. I’m very nervous about this game but I always am with Galway.

    A bit like you WJ, I do fancy us to get over the line today. The head has definitely been dragged along by the heart but we’ve been targeting this game for some time.

    Still not clear how the injuries will impact us. Looking for a big game from the likes of Jason Doc today. Also need to see a consistent performance from James Carr. He has the potential to transform our inside line.

    Mayo by two.

  2. Thank you Willie Joe for your brilliant blog,I expect us to win not by much but I think that we will have a little more in the tank,what I want to see is a structure in defence and keep our scorers near the posts,not back in the full back line,I thought watching Galway in Croke Park that even though Conroy and Comer was at their best they still could not win,anyway all the best to people travelling and to a great game with no injuries to either team, up Mayo

  3. Game day, weather is perfect , usually some rumours about Mayo of someone injured or on the beer last night, back in the day if we won Wilie Joe was training fulltime and if we lost Willie Joe was seen having a few pints in a pub before the match. No Rumours today, just good game from everyone on field and on the line and a fine victory will be ours.

  4. Looking forward to a great game. It looks like a 50/50 game on paper and expect the old cliche to apply, goals win matches!

  5. 8:25am Rock, and you’re on your way to Gatwick. Jesus, that’s a tight schedule.

    Just go to the top of the passport queue at Dublin, and say you have to get to Castlebar for the game. That’s what I did in 2012 coming back from Spain. QF against Down was 20 mins on, everyone at the front, stepped aside and said ‘of course, go right ahead’. I made the second half.

  6. It will be some achievement if we win today with all of our injuries. We will find out today if the league final was a blip or an accurate reflection of where we are at. However, I’ll be there roaring them on losing my voice as usual. Best of luck to the lads. Up Mayo!

  7. Game day finally here lovely day in store so just right for hard fast championship football I expect us to come out flying like bullocks out of a trailer , it’ll probably be a tough , tight tence game as all Galway/ mayo games can be ,no one really noing any thing about where both teams are at the moment or who is or isn’t injured makes it so intriguing but hopefully we’ll knuckle down and pull away with ten to go , it’s all about days like this enjoy it every one

    Mayo by 3

  8. The absolute very best to our men. You’d never know but we could flither Galway today if we get going….. Wounded bear and all that.
    Either way, a win!

  9. Forgive me for being pedantic WJ but it’s actually 2014 since we beat them in Castlebar- the 2015 clash was in Salthill

  10. Hi

    Not able to make the match due to the joys of children, Ed Sheeran and back up ‘taxi driver’ succumbing to Covid

    So I’ve a ticket available for anyone who might not have one if you want to contact me I can email it on

  11. Bloody hell, Spotlight, you are of course right. As you know, I’m a fan of all things pedantic so bow to that correction, for which thanks. I’ll make the edit now.

  12. A good start would be great. Not like last year where we were poor enough and Galway had a big lead at half time. If we show intent from the off and let Galway chase the game we will win. If Galway get their head in front it will be hard to reel them in. We seem to be slow starters for some reason. Always appreciate your hard work in bringing us this forum Willie Joe. It is a platform for all the Mayo diaspora not just for the great GAA commentary but for how it connects us to home and one another.

  13. Best of luck to all today. Let’s make our voices heard in McHale Park. Our ground, our patch! Maigh Eo Ab?

  14. Landing in Knock at lunchtime @Catcol. Once Aer Lingus doesn’t let me down I’ll be sitting comfortably in McHale Park with a programme in my paw at 3pm.


  15. I think James has a decent record up against the neighbours and I hope we can keep it goin this evening.

    It’s hard to gauge alright with the amount of injuries and not knowing who’s fit for the fray.

    If the worst comes to the worst we’ll have to soldier the other route, so if Galway were to beat us today we’ll still be in the championship.

    The very best of luck to James, his selectors all the players and all the supporters as well.

    It’s a day for excitment and high drama and I’m sure we’ll have both.

    We’re lucky we come from the country we come from and the county we come from.

    Safe journey to all the Mayo fans and Galway fans alike and I hope we all have plenty to shout about.

    Hon Mayo.

  16. Maith thu WJ le hagadh an blog brea. B’feidir go mbead an bua ag Mhuigeo inniu le cunadh De? Go neiri le foireann Mhuigeo and bigi curamach ar na boithre.
    Let’s think about the families of Red Og and Kate Moran on their sad losses. We all agree it certainly puts sport in perspective!
    Beannacht De lena anamhacha dilis.Bron ar an mbas.
    Mhuigeo Abu!

  17. I’ve a feeling that 15 won’t start, and I think we just edge a close, frustrating battle by a couple of points.
    As I posted a few days ago, I feel the losing manager will not be around for next season so they are both under pressure to win.
    Safe travels, looking forward to seeing the new pitch (which removes another excuse for a poor home record) and Hon Mayo.

  18. With the rose tinted glasses on Mayo 3-13 Galway 1-10….think we’ll win it well

  19. Mayo – a mystery wrapped in a conundrum! As usual we don’t know what to expect from Mayo but neither does the opposition. We are blaming the league final performance on the idea that we were preparing for the Galway game and have to peak today. We will have a better idea if this is the case or not by 5.30 this evening. It is the lot of a Mayo supporter to be in limbo most of the time. The question is will it be heaven or hell tonight. You can’t beat it!

  20. Mayo will win today but were going nowhere this year with all the injuries and having only one gameplan

  21. Is thr game ‘decided on the day’. Gaa website says ‘extra time if necessary ‘, but could it go to penalties if needed ?

  22. Travelling more in hope than expectation, Galway have good players and fewer injuries, if they do not win today then that reflects on their leadership including PJ. They have more to lose so motivation should be stronger which is critical in tight games.

    James has proven adept at beating Galway but with injuries and lack of match fitness may prove too much on this occasion, it could be his greatest win in Connacht if we pull it off. Either way, I actually think that this will be the last year for both managers. Safe travels all.

  23. 2 great games on today. Skin and hair to be flying from the off in both. Nothing like a championship crowd and atmosphere. We go again
    Donegal by 2
    Mayo by 4

  24. The public frustration and criticism laid at the feet of the players and management since last Sept has been widespread but justified. We need to see a response today both on the field and on the sideline to give the Mayo supporters some renewed faith. Come on Mayo – go hard for every ball !!

  25. Mayo should win this by a few points, not buying into this “hope” nonsense, Galway are after playing football in division 2 and couldn’t beat Roscommon, having said that, it’s a local derby but home comforts should sway it for Mayo.

    I think most people are getting fed up with the whinge fest regarding injuries and it comes across as making early excuses.

    There are no excuses for not winning this one on home turf but part of me would be happy if Galway won because I see a better path forward in the Championship.

  26. A quiet Mayo is a dangerous Mayo…..hope Doherty and COC are not exposed for pace with their men in particular Silke allowed up the field.

    Ruane needs a massive game and it would be some boost if our most underrated footballer – Paddy was added to the panel.

    Brillant weather in Mayo, come on Lads.

  27. I have two adult and one juvenile ticket if anyone is shórt. I can’t make the match unfortunately?

  28. Unfortunately i won’t be in McHale pk today, but i’ll be glued to the box come throw in, and I can’t wait!
    Weighing everything up, I fancy us. The bookies have us at 4/7 and Galway 2/1, but I feel it will be tighter than that. I reckon a low scoring game, and us to sneak it by 1 or 2.
    I think there are great days on the horizon for us and a win today despite our growing injury list could turn out to be one of our finest Connaught wins of recent times.
    As that great Mayo stalwart from Aghagower Seosamh O Maolchroin would say, Tiocfaidh ár Lá Mhaigh Eo!
    Good luck to James and all the team, and I hope its a great day for the green and red everywhere. It’s certainly shaping up for a nice sunny day in Castlebar.
    Mayo 1.10
    Galway 1.08

  29. Feeling confident today.

    I think ultimately that galway team can’t really be trusted, their fullback line and goalkeeper are deeply suspect and for once we seem to have actual kickpassers in our half forward line so can see us blitzing them early and hitting the for few goals

    Mayo to win by 4, Carr will be motm with all the attention on cillian. Perfect day for ball, no excuses

  30. Its hard to call as all championship games between Galway and Mayo usually are. I would put S coen in to FB and move Osion to midfield. AOS drop back to HB line. I dont rate Eoghan Mc as a HB. He is better as a HF. FF line needs to grab about 9 orc10 scores from play . This is J Carr chance. Interesting to see what level COC will be at. Gooch cooper was never the same after coming back from similar injury.
    Galway will the hungrier and have more potential match winners.. that might be enough for them..
    God bless all on this Divine Mercy Sunday…

  31. Hi Willie Joe. It’s a perfect sunny day here in Cadtlebar although a strong ish enough wind. Perfect conditions. As I said on an earlier blog that Team will not start. I expect Boland and Diarmuid Ó Connor to Start with James keeping Cillian and Kevin MC in reserve.
    Galway are dangerous but We have a decent back line with Ó Hora, Keegan, Mullin and Plunkett. Paddy would be a great addition if he’s fit. Mattie needs a big game he had a sluggish League, Today he could be marking Conroy. He needs to clean him out.
    Our Forward line with ROD as CF can create damage if given fast ball inside. Carr, Doherty and Boland can make hay but they need fast kick passes inside. Cillian to come on int he 2nd half.
    No Excuses Today. Go out and attack at pace.
    A Mayo win by 4/5 points.
    Safe travelling to All.

  32. I don’t understand why most are so confident. I fancy Galway . We have too many injuries and players not playing on form. I hope I’m wrong but prediction is a very comfortable win for Galway .

  33. I just didn’t think we could do it for one reason and one reason only…..injuries.
    However as the excitement is building I’m starting to believe.
    Cmooooon Mayooooo!

  34. One other thing,as supporters we don’t have control over much,but the one thing we can control is how much noise we make.Is MacHale Park going be like a library today as it was v Galway in 2016 and 2018 or a cauldron like it was v Donegal in the rain in 2019?
    Let’s do our part too!

  35. Hahaha! @viper I’ve just had a good laugh out loud moment with you of all people complaining about a “whinge fest”!

  36. Oilean acla I’m all with you on that thoughts are with their families and friends today may they both rest in peace

  37. Galway’s back line is poor but we don’t have the forwards to take advantage. I see Galway winning this very comfortably. Unfortunately!

  38. Not long now lads. Mayo strong favourites with the bookies and huge confidence on here. I still think we will give yer cage a good rattle. Up Galway.

  39. Have a ticket spare if anyone needs . It’s for the stand. Leave your email and will send on

  40. Great stuff WJ, the sight of a Galway Jersey was always enough to get me into battle mode & that’s the way it should be, Mayo need to tear into Galway from the off, Up Mayo.

  41. Usually I get less and less confident as throw in approaches but today is the opposite. I’m expecting a hectic start but I think we’ll grow into it and finish the strongest. 4 points to spare by the end. 1-17 to 2-10

  42. I did indeed Ballinlough Lad. Even found time to get some spuds on board. Sitting in the stand now with Boyler behind me at the media desk!

  43. That’s a good one he was in front of me in the hogan stand 3 weeks ago he a hardy buck but very good for the selfies

  44. Interesting to see how DoC gets on in 10. If his game is sacrificed for RoD being able to have more freedom and kick pass in it could well be worth it. Not as nervous as I thought I’d be – best to luck to anyone in red and green!

  45. I’m confident coming into this. Walsh,Comer and Conroy are danger men but I think we have enough to get through. Ohora on Walsh and leeroy on comer.
    Hon maigh eo

  46. COC blowing but doing well considering he’s not fully fit. ROD coming into it. Hard to call at this point. Some of the backs look a bit loose and Galway forwards will have another purple patch. Up Mayo!!

  47. Looking good,we have only played for five minutes and we are level,in fact we should be in front

  48. I’d say I’m a bit more nervous now! If there is a tactical shift and we’re able to handle the shawl tactics that would definitely be encouraging, great we’re even given the start we had

  49. We need to lift it somehow. Kevin Mc needs to come on and Boland. We need Firepower. Mayos gamelan is We have No Gameplan.

  50. Need 2 quick goals now. Put Aido on the small square. Pump it in. There is still time.

  51. Super win for us but kickouts hurting us bad. Good luck in the qualifiers. Up Galway.

  52. Well I suppose that we got some comfort from the finish,but I have not seen any defensive structure

  53. That one is on management. Could blame players but they’re picked by manager. Subs too late or indeed not at all when they should have been. Beyond time for a change.

  54. 2 points for Mayo in the first 30 mins of the 2nd half. Just not good enough.

  55. Better forwards win matches

    Galway a far better attacking side. Far from the finished article but this could prove a big breakthrough win for them..

    Mayo will have it all to do to even get out of the back door I think, could do with a fortuitous draw..

  56. Galway allowed a training session in MacHale Park during the week according to Eamon Fitzmaurice. If this is true heads should roll.

  57. Tommy+Joe says:
    April 24, 2022 at 5:41 pm
    “That one is on management. Could blame players but they’re picked by manager. Subs too late or indeed not at all when they should have been. Beyond time for a change.”

    Embarrassing that two or three of that team started and stayed on as long as they did.
    Zero logic to it.

  58. Not for the first time and not for the last time, Mayo are beaten by the concession of a goal. We only played for twenty minutes really in the whole game and still should have beat them, some shocking wides.

    As well as the running game we really need to develop a quick kick passing game inside to our forwards. We need variety to beat teams with a blanket defence.

    On a side note, Travelling Wilbury, you can always just not listen to the podcast.

  59. Well done Galway. Better team today. Not much atmosphere for that game. Mayo look dreary…not edge at all till it was too late…hard luck lads. I feel flat. Don’t know what else to say.

  60. Here, mayo were 2nd best all over the field. Galway more organized cool under pressured. I’d say mayo have better players with more big game experience so that only leaves management. Fact is we’re flat, time for change or no all ireland with this management, ever.

  61. MayoMayo. Im a casual listener, someone tipped me off about that episode as I had listened to other episodes in the past. Good luck to the lads doing the podcast but I fell off my chair when I heard yer man go on about his opinions about where Mayo football is at currently.

  62. Superior conditioning almost saved us in the end but left it too late to kick on. Poor 1st and 3rd quarters left a lot to do. Very disappointing day out but bigger and better days ahead this summer I’d be certain of that. Up Mayo.

  63. Pat Spillane was a very happy camper he loves nothing more than belittling mayo football but he does have a point when he says we will never win Sam with the standard of forwards we produce. He also said we don’t have a plan b true again and that’s down to horan

  64. Is this james horans 8th year managing mayo? I may be wrong but it seems like a lot of years to have a manager over a team who are in the top 3/4 every year but come home empty handed each time. Also i cant remember exactly as confused by the years, was it horan that was over mayo when every man woman and dog knew donaghy was going to play full forward for the replay in limerick? All i remember was nothing was done to prepare any of the players for that obvious eventuality

  65. Hard luck Mayo and well done Galway. In fairness they were better than the 1 point win would suggest. Mayo did what they could but Walsh was unreal for them. Those free kicks he got with the wind swirling was frustrating from our point of view but he was nailing us all day.
    Anyways it just won’t to be today.

  66. We were hammered really, the late run of scores just put a gloss on the score line.

    Galway played really well for a 15 minute spell in the second half where they kicked everything, fair play to them, hope they beat the Rossies in the final. But the injury list aside, there are a number of worrying factors from a Mayo perspective:

    1. The amount of Mayo players who are uncomfortable shooting on their weaker foot from scoreable positions, preferring to recycle and more often than not, lose possession or impetus;

    2. Our defense was wide open again today, and would be ripped open by the likes of Kerry, Dublin or Tyrone;

    3. We looked very lethargic at times, which makes me think we may not go much further if we meet another decent team in the qualifiers;

    4. Some of our players looked understandably a bit ring rusty, coming back from injury;

    5. Shane Walsh shows the value of having someone who can lift a 45. We haven’t had one of these at senior level since Maurice Sheridan retired in the early 2000s. Why not?

    6. We still haven’t worked out how to play when the opposition crowd the center of their half, á la the Galway shawl.

    7. We probably got what? Five points from play in a senior championship game. This will not win any match against top opposition.

    Unfortunately, given the lack of visible improvement on the injury front and general impression of staleness recently, this might be a short summer for us.

  67. Very early after the result is always a dangerous time to be commenting, but It Means Nothing to Me I’d agree with point 6. in particular. Concern is do we allow teams that might be a bit behind us / on our level have an easier time through the trouble we have breaking through a massed defence. I’d imagine whoever we get in the next match will set up in a similar way, and if they’re a strong team we could be in trouble. Congrats to Galway on the win.

  68. It Means Nothing to Me……Re your point 1, I’d say “…..the amount of Mayo players who are uncomfortable shooting on any foot”…..Shocking to see how many runners going forward failed to shoot and turned back……

  69. Our tactics are not effective.
    Compare Galways attacking play to ours.
    @travelling Wilbury
    You’re playing the man in your post.
    Clearly means nothing to you.
    Calling out in a personal manner a named individual Enda McGearty.
    He and Ref provide a great service.
    Clearly means nothing to you.
    You and others with similar behaviour are the scourge of social media lack of civility.
    You’re the problem.
    Have a sleep on that.

  70. Mayo got what they deserved out of that game. Only played well in patches. Going 20 minutes without a score is where it was lost.

    Galway can’t stop winning championship games in Castlebar. Can see why the qualifier was switched to Limerick and Connacht final to Croke Park.

  71. Galway by far best team on the day and should have won by more. Mayo dont seem to learn anything from previous defeats. Having said that expect Mayo to remain in championship longer than Galway and would beat them if meeting later in year in croke park

  72. Travelling Wilbury – I’ve deleted that comment (you know the one). There’s no need for personal attacks of that kind and you should know that kind of stuff isn’t allowed here.

  73. We woke up too late in the second half. 23 mins between our first score and next in the second half.

    Two qualifiers to get to the quarter where we will meet the Leinster or Munster champs. If we win that then we play the other champ we didt meet in the quarters.

    Either way i think the big winners today are Roscommon. They have beaten Galway twice this year. And the other pity today other than us losing is that Galway are no great shakes.

    No long or diagonal balls into the forward line or no mixing it up in an effort to out wit the Galway defence.

    It’s Horan’s last year whether he will get another term or not is a huge debate.

    Kev Mc probably his last year and a few other players who played in the forwards today not up to it. Why? Because when we needed a score and a bit of fist to go and win it they didt provide.

  74. @Mayomajic. . Galway had made
    number of substitution’s before Mayo.. .. to improve certain aspects of their game. James Horan again very slow making any decisions on the sideline.. We don’t have a left footed free taker for almost a decade.

  75. Horanball isn’t for everyone. But it has been pretty successful in the past.
    However, we learned one thing today. There’s nothing worse than watching Horanball with slow, one-paced players.
    If James wants to successfully deploy this style of football, find some more speedsters quickly.
    You can get away with one or two slow players. Cillian would be one for example. You carry his skill set despite his lack of pace. But you can’t go out on the field with 7 or 8 slow players, to play a “running game”. Otherwise it’s gets very ugly.
    You can’t have Jason Doherty, Aidan o Shea, Cillian o connor, Stephen coen, Conor loftus all on the same team playing a running game. It’s just slow motion stuff.
    Even the next batch of players are only medium paced – Ruane, Diarmuid o connor, plunkett, Ohora. You can get away with them if they are surrounded by several explosive players like Tommy Conroy and Ryan.
    The only truly explosive pacy players on the park for us today were ROD, eoghan mc, and Mullin, and maybe keegan and carr.
    Unfortunately the two fastest players on the panel in Durcan and Conroy are injured.
    I’m sick of watching one paced forwards on Mayo teams.
    Of course if Horan told the players to kick pass instead of run and carry it’s an entirely different story and people like coen and plunkett become much more effective but that’s not going to happen clearly.

  76. We put a bit of gloss on that score near the end. Far to reliant on Ryan o Donoghue
    Who was tightly marked in second half. GALWAY deserved there win and Mayo can take a few positives from Match ,
    +That Cillian got full match
    +That Eoghan mcglouglin looked Super fit.
    +Diarmuid o Connor back
    +That James Carr on form.
    +Lee Keegan is awesome.
    +That Ryan Donughue didnt get injured. I’m not going to mention the minuses.

  77. There’s going to be some whingefest on here for a few weeks…..

    Hard to blame the players today.

  78. James Horan left after 4 years in his first term as manager and this year is his 4th year in his 2nd term so a high possibility that history will repeat itself.

    The difference between 2014 and 2022 is the quality of the team and panel now is not as good as it was then so worrying for the years ahead.

  79. Galway play/played the same game as Kerry did when routing us three weeks ago , now i know Horan wasn’t at the game but surely he must have watched a replay yet we went out and played right into Galway’s hands .

    As for Aidan Orme what the hell was he thinking we have two of the finest kickers / point takers in the game in Ryan O’Donoghue and Cillian O’Connor , yet he got a rush of blood and it was game over , not that we deserved to get a draw , but it would have been nice to have seen what we could have done in extra time.

  80. Not sure I agree with all the downplaying of Galway, this was a very big win for them you could see their emotion at the final whistle.. it could really bring them on hugely

    A watershed moment for Joyce too in that its his first significant championship win

    They’ve plenty to improve on but momentum is a funny thing – any team with top class players like Shane Walsh, comer and Conroy will always take beating

    I expect them to win Connacht – they would have won the league final with a fit Shane Walsh – and doing so means they would avoid Kerry and Dublin’s half of the draw. If Tyrone were to crash out of Ulster anything could happen on the Connacht winner side of the draw

  81. James Horans style of play – High intensity, high energy, hard running, pressure play Im afraid no longer suits some of our players. The likes of Aidan, Cillian Jason Doc, Lee Keegan, Kevin Mc and indeed Diarmid are not able to sustain this level of energy for an entire game or indeed long enough to be effective any longer. They slump and go flat for periods and then we look very poor. This is no criticism of those lads but it seems obvious to me that the Horan style is better suited to a young fit energetic group of lads ……like we used to be a few years back. Time to rethink our approach..

  82. A win so I’m delighted.. nearly through it away.. I was worried at half time but in fairness we were excellent for most of that second half.. the nerves at the end was really down to playing away from home and so many young inexperienced lads in our team..
    Cillian well and truly conned the ref in the first half with the black card..very soft.
    All in all a win and plenty to work on..

  83. I get what is said about not having enough pace for our gameplan.
    But, I mean a gameplan that requires 125k population to provide 20 explosive speedsters with football ability and making themselves available is flawed from a players and athleticism point of view straight off.
    In general I think it’s simply not good tactics.
    Dublin, Tryone, Kerry and Galway have shown the tactical template. Mystifies me why we don’t copy it.
    The Galway kickout is the only reason this match was anyways close. With a better kickout we lose by 6+ handy.

  84. Agree tuamstar that black card was a joke

    Enjoy the win, Galway’s biggest in 4 years..

    Comer’s return to form has been absolutely massive this year and is there a better midfielder in the country at the moment than Conroy?

  85. keep the faith, referee didnt punish Galway for slowing the game down, when mullin left the field mayo lost energy, cillian was not match sharp, if he was we would have scored more; having a keeper back with distribution and 45 kicking ability will make a big difference, flynn was missed in midfield too, too many things went against mayo. No excuses though for flat beginning and flat middle, but things happen. Mayo not out yet!

  86. Great comeback (almost) but that was a game littered with error after error. We did nothing to stop Conroy or Comer, absolutely abysmal tactics. How many times did Conroy punt a free kick into the d, and acres of space in there. Runners not being tracked. Galway were more clinical

  87. Very poor all over pitch. No direction going forward. We are so predictable and clueless when a team sits back. Not learning anything. Horan has to go.

  88. Does anyone know when the qualifiers are on – four or five weekends from now?

  89. Fair play to Galway, deserved there win. Positives were cillian who was excellent considering such a long lay off. Negatives were style of play and tactics. The players available currently are not athletic enough for horanball. Unfortunately the same failings manifested themselves again…….

  90. Why where they so slow getting hession on,Galway scored a point and we only had 14 on the field.
    Far to many wides.

  91. Lets hope we get the injured players back for the qualifiers.
    The most worrying think is the type of our injuries. Today Mullin pulled up with what seemed to be a hamstring. In the under 20 game a couple of weeks ago our centre back went down with a hamstring like today in full flight and no contact from a opponent. Something not right.

  92. Execution, or lack thereof the simple skills of Gaelic football let Mayo down today, kicking the ball over the bar. The wides today were appalling and this was only after 1,000,000 hand passes……it’s so hard to watch, we all know what way Mayo will play, there is no imagination at all, thus we are very easy to play against.

    Galway have 2 sweepers, we don’t push up on these just leave them free.

    We have no confidence or else or simply not allowed shoot from distance (Orme shot wasn’t on)

    A running game looks great, but the ball will always move faster than a man, simple stuff.

    An objective is not to give away scorable frees but we stand off players.

    Damien Comer is a bull, why was Hession marking him?

    Very frustrating to watch us again.

    Minefield now of the qualifiers.

    6 weeks to get a fully fit squad, it’s all needed.

    Great to see Cillian back, Ryan is get, DoC did well, Aidan did well, Lee did well and O’Hora tries so hard, E MC did well.

    Unfortunately so many players are anonymous but no quality to replace them so their performance doesn’t really matter….

  93. Not a good day for Mayo football, defence was brutal for the goal, two defenders ball watching instead of getting stuck in? Lee Keegan played very well along with O Mullen, the rest were just not up for a tough Galway team. Aidan played well but 3 of the forwards not clued in to game at all, R O Donoghue had a good first half but there was no quick ball delivered into full forward line at all, some wides were awful but still they can make it to a quarter final Possibly?

  94. Too many slow players in key positions for Horans tactics, no confidence to take shots on for some reason. I get the whole recycle ball, but sometimes its just on and we failed to go for it enough. Too many passengers today, at least two or three should be dropped for various reasons. Can’t see how we can improve with Conroy goosed and Flynn gone. 5 weeks to the next game is a massive bonus. The minute Oisin pulled up I knew we were done, hopefully its not as bad and only a tweak. He didn’t look 100% from the start anyway. Good luck to Galway in the final (sorry Leitrim).

  95. It’s over I’m afraid, I was sure we would get an AI under JH but it’s not going to happen now, injury caught up with us this year which didn’t help, poor defensive structure as well.
    Need slot of luck in qualifier but if we get to Croke Park and some lads back you never know but I feel it could be a short year.

  96. I guess our season now starts in June
    I hope we have a few more back
    And a gameplan ……..
    Huge pressure on Horan now

  97. Injuries have been a huge factor for the last 2 games.Thats a fact.
    Still we are very one dimensional and while Horan always gets amazing praise for developing players he has not developed deadly forwards.
    For all the guys we have replaced we have as many again to reach Iver the next 4 years or less.
    It won’t be easy.
    Again very hard to understand why Fergal Boland didn’t get a go today.Did very well in Tralee then out of position Tyrone when no one played well and he is just left out today.

  98. Delighted with the win.
    Didn’t think we’d do it.
    Our kick outs almost cost us the win. It’s been an ongoing problem all year and I don’t think we will beat Roscommon if we don’t improve that aspect.

  99. Aggghh – that was brutal. Not to many positives (except for the 7/8 minute spell at end when we kicked 5 in a row!). It did look like another great escape but not to be.

    We are missing a few through injuries and they may be back for the qualifiers but right now I hope we lose our first qualifier game and just get this year out of the way. I just cant face going on another run and then losing semi final / final (even though I think we arent good enough anyway to go on a run). I am glad of the five or six week break now and just enjoy other counties playing.

    I think at this stage James has tried his best and its just not good enough. No idea what the answer is.

  100. It’s not about developing forwards.
    We would struggle handed over Galways forwards three years ago.
    Because our tactics make sure that our forwards face a packed defence on almost every one of our attacks.. It’s that simple.
    Our tactics will always ensure our forwards receive slow ball, generally running away from goal with lots of defenders in place.

  101. Very disappointing on the field and sideline agan today. Did James Horan speak to the media afterwards? Where was the new PLAN we were promised? So many mistakes. The usual goal let in and no goal scored. The amount of handpassing over and back, then lost it Every single team would be able to beat us – its the same tactics everyday Surely there will be a change of management when season ends. Oh yea another thing – i never want to hear the word ‘learnings’ again. Where’s @Viper to surgically analyse what we saw today…

  102. A lot of anger being unleashed after the game, this defeat was coming, still a few guys out injured. Mullin obviously had not recovered fully but yet was a big loss when he had to go off. Conroy is the real Galway leader.
    A few players had lost form in the latter stages of the league and also were shown up today.

    Galway goalkeeper was very dodgy, and will be exposed later in the championship.

    Management must drop one of the guys recently returned from injury.

  103. I hope those thinking the qualifier route suits us better this year are right. I honestly don’t know. Something I’ve noticed since Cillian came back Ryan seems to have regressed. I think he needs to be more centrally involved. He seems to me to be the sort of lad that plays on confidence..when he’s on frees & they are going over his confidence is high and he thrives..he doesn’t seem to be interested in bit parts,he was still one of our better performers today though. I think eventhough we didn’t play well a few small errors cost us. The ball across leading up to their goal was our ball to win,no question, but for some reason Aido didn’t claim it and we were punished. A mark well won by James Carr in the 2nd half , got the shout from Cillian,played on instead of taking it. Cillian,tame shot blocked down & missed the resultant 45. So nothing from a 13m mark if claimed. As others have said we need to mix our game up a bit. I thought if James Carr & Ryan got proper supply today they,at least had the beating of their men. One thing for sure we need to find a bit of energy from somewhere or else our summer journey could short/

  104. @Seamus Thornton

    Preliminary Round – Weekend 25th/26th May (if needed)
    First Round – Weekend 4th/5th June
    Second Round – Weekend 11th/12th June

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