Game day – silverware and seeding the prize in Salthill

It’s Connacht final day. We’re set to face off against our great local rivals Galway at Pearse Stadium in Salthill this afternoon. The match is set to throw in at 4pm, David Gough of Meath is the ref and it’s being shown live on RTÉ with live radio commentary on Midwest.

As well as the traffic, we’re usually bemoaning the wet and windy weather so frequently encountered at the seaside venue for a match with the Tribesmen. Whatever about the former – and the best advice there is get to the city early – it looks like, for our second Connacht Championship game in a row this year (third, indeed, if you include New York) the conditions are going to be fine. The temperature should hit around 18 degrees and the winds will be light. Ideal weather for football in other words.

It’s a truism of the altered Championship structure that the provincial finals come upon us with such indecent haste. (Whether they should be there at all anymore is another matter entirely). That’s not the only thing about today that comes as a bit of a shock.

Take this one: Galway are going for a Connacht three-in-a-row today.

It’s exactly forty years since they last completed such a feat – I was there, on the terrace at Pearse Stadium on that hot day in July 1984 when we malfunctioned badly, which helped them greatly to get over the line – and while the lustre of provincial silverware has dimmed greatly compared to then, a hat-trick of Nestor Cup titles would still be a noteworthy achievement for them.

Or take this one – today is the Tribesmen’s ninth Connacht final appearance in a row.

In that time, by comparison, we’ve only appeared in two. Mind you, we won both of those Covid-era deciders, both over Galway.

Two years ago, deep in winter behind closed doors, was the most recent time we competed for the Nestor Cup at today’s venue. Before then, though, you have to go all the way back to 2009 when we did so most recently before then. We came away with a dramatic one-point win that day.

You have to jump a year further back, to Castlebar in 2008, for the most recent time that Galway beat us in a Connacht final. They’ve come out on top against us in the province a good few times since, of course, but that day – where the winner was scored by a fresh-faced young lad just out of Minor by the name of Paul Conroy – they bagged the provincial silverware in doing so.

Enough of the history.

Unlike in the old days, everything isn’t on the line at Salthill today. The Nestor Cup is – and Kevin McStay has made no secret of his desire for his team to claim it – but, win or lose, we’re both headed to the start of the All-Ireland Group Stage in a fortnight’s time.

Indeed, there’s a touch of the Winner’s Curse about today’s game, as the victors will find themselves in Group 1, along with League champions Derry (who were widely being spoken about in the same breath as Dublin and Kerry all year until they lost to Donegal), as well as the losing Ulster finalists and Westmeath. That truly is the Group of Death.

There’s nothing easy about being in a group that includes Dublin, of course, which is the fate awaiting today’s losers. Indeed, it’s arguably a touch easier to win the other group but, in truth, nothing about the draw is easy for ourselves and Galway. Both of us just have to get on with it.

That’s what we can expect both teams to do this afternoon. There’s zero chance that either of them will be playing to lose – Championship is all about momentum and what better way to bounce into the Group Stage, and the challenge that Derry will present, than by beating your biggest rivals in Connacht?

We’ve become used in recent years – something we never had to do in the years from 2011 onwards – to wonder about what kind of Mayo team will show up. Too often in this decade our performance levels haven’t been where they’ve needed to be on days like this and, while we seem to be getting better in this respect, those nagging concerns are still there now.

But they’re also there for Galway too. They stank the place out two weeks ago in Markievicz Park, only overhauling Sligo in injury time, and they’re a team searching for a run of form, which isn’t a great place to be coming into a Connacht final against us.

Injuries and fitness of players named are a concern for both sides too. Will Paddy start? Are either Diarmuid or Cillian okay? What about Damien Comer? Is there a chance Cillian McDaid might be parachuted into the 26 or even the starting fifteen at the last minute?

With all the uncertainties around both teams, it’s easy to fall back on the usual clichés about this fixture. You know the tune – never a kick of a ball between them, always a 50:50 contest, could go either way.

But here’s the thing about clichés: they always contain within them at least a germ of the truth.

This genuinely is an extremely hard game to call.

From our perspective, if everyone we’ve named in the 26 is fully okay (which is a bit of an if) we have the means at our disposal to win this, albeit in a nervy, edge-of-the-seat way. From their point of view, if their main men – in particular Comer and Walsh but also Finnerty – fire in the way the Galway contingent hope, then they could this evening be celebrating their first Nestor Cup treble in four decades.

On a day of tight margins, though, we arguably have more going for us. We beat them in last year’s League final at Croke Park and we held our nerve better with everything on the line against them in the All-Ireland preliminary quarter-final last June. When the fat’s in the fire today, those wins should stand to us and could help us eke out a path to victory in this one.

Okay, it’s time to get myself sorted for the day. Safe travelling to all heading to Galway today and – in answer to Kevin McStay’s call – let’s all give him the Mayo Roar he’s asked for at Pearse Stadium later on today. And save some too for the jubilee Mayo teams of 1996, 1997 and 1999 who’ll be introduced to the crowd at half-time.

Right, game face on. Let’s get this done. Up Mayo.

187 thoughts on “Game day – silverware and seeding the prize in Salthill

  1. Excellent summation of where both teams stand and serious question marks over the fitness of those returning from injury. Probably be a cagey enough start with lots of men behind the ball. Expect high long balls hit towards Comer to test our full back line early. Expect McBrien to pick him up with Brick taking Finnerty. Who gets Walsh? Unusually for Pearse stadium it looks like a perfect day for football so no excuses about wind and rain. Win this one and take it from there. Prediction Mayo by 2! Happy Mayo Day all.

  2. I know it’s a long shot, but does anyone have a spare stand ticket for today. Due to ill health I wouldn’t be able to last standing on the terrace.

    If anyone has a ticket please contact me on 087 2375747.

    Thanks

  3. A convincing victory for either side will be a very positive outcome for that side , follow that up with a victory against derry and that side becomees a serious contender . Will it be Galway or Mayo though .

  4. Looking forward to the match, the calendar discussions etc can be parked for another day.

    Very hard to call, Mayo you’d think a slight edge based on game time for players but really difficult to call.

    I’d hope for a competitive match from us with further progress made around the middle and Mattie continuing to come into a bit of form. The team is fairly settled now, McBrien has the six jersey and is there as a sweeper and as the last line of defence, together with Brickenden for when teams go long off their kick out. If he was to rampage forward and bag another goal it would be very welcome.

    Hoping for more progress in the forwards too, and interested to see the intensity and pace we bring to the game. Long ball worked for us early against Roscommon but then we slowed it down and managed the ball a lot more. A balance of the two required against Galway who I have no doubt will look to bring everyone back and also double team Ryan.

    Mayo by two.

  5. I am surprised by the confidence of Mayo supporters. Galway are a better team on paper by a distance. But injury ravaged poor form and poor management has them underperforming for last few years with the exception of 2022.
    If they click on any day they can beat the best. Jordan flynn , paddy , ROD AOS . Who do you look to after that for our match winners? Comer to win it for Galway I think.

  6. I think Galway will be very much up for this after losing the hurling and u20s. The likes of Finnerty, Comer and Kelly haven’t clicked against us for a while due to fitness issues and I just fear today could be the day.
    Don’t think going all guns blazing early doors should be the plan as an open shootout will suit Galway.
    I’d be happy to be in touching distance at HT and hope fitness gets us through but my head Galway by a few…

  7. @lahanham Galway are not better panel then mayo.

    That’s just exsuces saying they had poor management and injuries why they haven’t been doing well the last few years sure you could say the same about ourselves…

    Also how fit are the Galway ones coming back? We saw last year PJ made a poor choice of playing Sean Kelly when he clearly wasn’t fully fit so much for player welfare..

    Mayo by 3 or 4 and wonder what exsuce PJ will have after it..

    Best of luck guys!

  8. Aidan O’Shea in my humble opinion is busting a gut this year to put the record straight after that debacle for us against the Dubs when the idiots on the hill booed him off. I think and hope he can give the Galway fullback line a torturous afternoon and create the space for Ryan and co to do damage.

  9. Lahanman – That is your own matter of opinion that Galway are a better team on paper by a distance and one majority of people who follow football would probably disagree with.

    Results between the two set ups over the past 5 seasons says different. Joyce is with 1 win in 8 attempts against Mayo doesn’t back up your argument they are a better team by a distance.

    Like every game between the two counties it will be a close affair and finish a 1 score game.

  10. Football isnt played on paper , shur Galway be going for ten in a row if it were with all their silky fancy dans .

  11. I have 4 stand tickets (2 adult, 2 juvenile) and can no longer attend. If anyone needs them, call me 085 1794662

  12. @ThreeSwallows
    It’s me that has sent on a message about the ticket ?

  13. On form in the semis Mayo should be 1/5 favourites like Leinster in Croker yesterday where they fell over the line thanks to a Mayoman. Unfortunately form sometimes goes out the window and especially between Mayo and Galway but we should have enough to win it.

  14. The only time PJ has managed to get Walsh and Comer on the pitch together throughout the season we reached the final but its once in 5 years. Today Walsh is out of form after missing all the league and Comer is returning to championship pace after being out most of the year too. You are hoping Walsh and Comer will perform while there is really no evidence there to say they will or can given their season. Mayo will be disappointed if they lose this one.

  15. Its Mayo Football , there must be some rumours out there on match morning, who was on the beer last night, who got injured this morning, who is dropped, who got a late call up from a Junior Club to start first Championship match. Part of the build up over the years but seems little interest this year.

  16. Chesneychet – Comer and Walsh played v Mayo in 2020, 2021 and 2023 championship under Joyce.

  17. Best of luck today from my hospital bed to our 26 great Mayo Warriors ..As Ian Dury once sang “Reasons to be cheerful are 1,2,3 ( defeats to Galway)

  18. If Aidan is left in and around the square he will cause problems for Galway. He will have to be man marked at least and if Kelly is tasked with the job he will not be likely to make his customary forays into our back line and that in itself is a bonus. I have not been a fan of Aidan’s for a while but he has impressed with his efforts in the last few games. He is a man on a mission. That passion, if reflected in other players, will result in victory for us today. As regards the draw we are well capable of beating any Ulster team. Am I right in saying that if we win that group and Dublin win theirs that we will not meet them in the semi’s. I still like this run into the championship. We will get better and better as the challenges arise. Looking forward to going to Wards pub in lower Salt hill to meet proprietor Anthony. Always a great sportsman even if he has changed his allegiance somewhat. But I suspect he has a great gra for Mayo always.

  19. They might have played against Mayo Tony but neither played all the games in the year as I was referring to. We need them both 100% and playing every game but that isnt happening. Mayo on league form should have too much for us today but hopefully we can keep in the game with ye as long as possible.

  20. Ok ok well played chesneychet but youre way too obvious for the beal bocht routine .

  21. It’s championship time. Hoping for a competitive, entertaining game. There has been some boring ultra defensive Galway Mayo fixtures in the last decade that were snorefests. I hope Mayo play to top form because I think they’ll need a top performance to win as these derys are usually tight affairs. If Mayo had shown poor form in league plus barely beating Sligo 2 weeks ago, I’ld still expect Mayo to raise their level against the old enemy. So Mayo should expect a fighting Galway on their home turf today.

  22. Really looking forward to the game today. Due to work commitments I couldn’t travel back so I’ll be watching it from the discomfort of West London. Very strange feeling to be missing a Connacht final – especially against Galway.

    I’m cautiously confident about our chances today. I expect it to be pretty close but a lot will depend on who’s actually fit and available for both sides. Paddy is a huge player for us so if he’s not available that’s a big blow.

    A lot of the talk on our side is about who’s tagging Comer and Walsh, but I’d be paying far more attention to Sean Kelly. He’s the man that makes them tick so we need to make sure he’s not allowed to wander unattended around the middle.

    Ryan will get a bit of timber early on so will be worth watching the belting, with Aido to chaperone proceedings!

    What we’d give for Tommy C to hit the net today. Could really spark a performance out of us.

    Mayo by two.

  23. I wish we had a scavenger somewhere around the middle. Someone like Paul Galvin or MD mc Auley.

    Someone working under the canopy and picking up the crumbs. How much damage did those two

    boyo`s do to us in games? Loose ball? There`s always plenty of it around . Hope we for once get our share.

  24. Liam Jones
    Are you the artist
    Feel better my dedicated Mayo supporter friend
    Many a time a met you on Stephen’s Green

  25. Its going to be a good game, hopefully the sunny weather lasts till 4pm, it would help for a more attacking game.

    If Durcan is injured then he is a huge for Mayo. Galway look like the will setup with the 2 sweepers and clog the middle with big lads, so pace will be needed to get through, but also good long kick passing will be hugely important, Mayo in alot of games have started with a good kicking game and then stopped and started running it and thats when opposition teams have come back into games.
    I want to see head up football, Daly wont know what to do with Boland, if Daly drops Boland is free to link play and more importantly score from long range which is needed to cancel out the sweepers and then get the sweepers to push out and leave space inside.
    Also float in ball on-top of O Shea, no one in that Galway team can stop him for a high ball.
    Similarly on the other side Comer is huge threat, everyone saying McBrien will be on him but McBrien will need help, cant leave Comer one on one.

  26. Best of luck to Mayo today,I believe that this will a very tough test for us,I still expect to win by a point,Galway will try very hard ,but I have never travelled to a game without expecting to win,I won’t change my mind now,safe travels to all supporters,hopefully no injuries to either team,please enjoy the banter and the game remember that those players spend all year training for enjoyment, give both teams the respect they deserve

  27. It’s me joe all right getting over a lttle bump in the road .I m Mayo to the core and always wish them the best…I was born in August 1951 and must have heard the roar of the Cup coming down from the station that September…I know it will again soon..Mayo for ever

  28. Enjoy the match lads and lassies, I hope its a great game and no mad there today wind to ruin it. May the best team on the day win it and please god neither team suffers any injuries. Up Galway. See ye this evening for the post mortem!!

  29. Ah God paddy durcan has been so unlucky with injuries big loss for sure.

    But still going with a mayo win.

    Ryan O D to be man of the match again how great would it be if Tommy C put in a big game.

  30. No point risking Paddy if he’s not fully right.

    There is an intense block of games coming up and any setbacks from here on out could spell an end to a players championship.

    Joyce if anything is showing he has learnt nothing from last year and has every player carrying a knock included in the 26.

  31. On a hot day hopefully our strong bench will be the difference and a lot will depend on match fitness of key players on both sides

  32. Joyce knows the pressure he is under to beat Mayo today and is holding nothing back. As big a Connacht title could be for Mayo, I think the knives will be out for Joyce if they don’t land a win.

  33. Wear the suncream !
    Some day.. Mc Daid on the pitch at the moment looking fresh .. no word on any changes…
    Mayo justify the favourites tag today with their recent record over us and PJ…

  34. This is gonna be a tough one. A lot of fellas telling me over the last few weeks that all the news on Galways injuries were as reliable as a chocolate teapot. All the big dogs have been waiting behind a hedge waiting on todays final v Mayo.
    Extra time and Mayo by 1 but just!!

  35. Well done to Clare today no shame whatsoever losing to Kerry,hopefully the.y can progress further over the coming years, a county who fight hard to stay in the limelight

  36. Kobe has been promoted and will no 12. Ciaran mc also returns to the panel and will 23 .
    Come on Mayo

  37. Having seen Galways sponsor I feel more confident,a burger sponsor,not good for elite athletes,only joking I have enjoyed many supermacs, come on Mayo

  38. @Bate the blanket hardly struggling we should be more up but wouldn’t say we are struggling and Tommy conroy looks back to his old self a bit more.

  39. Could win this by 8+ if can get going in attack. Kelly doesn’t look fit.

  40. Going OK.
    I’d take flynn off and bring on Loftus.
    Flynn isn’t himself . That or put hession on but game should suit Loftus

  41. In fairness, two poor teams, so many easy scores missed on both sides.

    Mayo will probably win

  42. As predicted, cagey affair. Teams know there’s a long summer ahead. Finerty and Comer the main men. We probably had enough possession to we further ahead but Galway have tactics right at the back. Half forward line will have to start scoring..
    I’m hoping for a 3rd qtr spurt similar to Rossie game…

  43. ³Carney getting on some amount of ball. Jack Coyne has the run of salthill . Can see how Sligo put it up to them. Little concerning on how easy Comer is turning McBrein. Mayo by 4 +

  44. why are we not more DIRECT!!!,

    that’s a poor Galway team and yet they are only down by 2 points at HT

  45. Honestly thought Tommy conroy was in for a goal there. Everyone said it would be close and a dogfight and that’s what this is so I’ll reserve judgement until final whistle!

  46. Mayo left 0-5 or 0-6 behind in the first 15 minutes alone. Players afraid to shoot or use their wrong foot. Other top teams don’t do that.

    That’s where we are at .

  47. Galway directness to make a difference in the second half. Galway have goals in them. Mayo forward play so dysfunctional.

  48. Clare you have been tipping Mayo non stop for weeks….
    We know your judgement!
    Mayo more composed.. a goal either way will swing it..

  49. @Tuamstar I’ll always tip mayo against ye sure..

    Comer is on fire for Galway in fairness.

  50. Green and Red
    Correct
    Very evident with McLoughlin and Flynn on that point
    Mayo very busy on breaks around the middle
    Really cleaning up in fact
    So far

  51. Two poor teams
    Today is as good as it’s gets so go bloody win it !
    They have Comer inside who is very dangerous and they are letting the limited ball they have in at every available opportunity
    We on the other hand are refusing to let the ball into O shea who has won it every time it’s gone in
    Frustrating

    Their hand is now played though and we have some good subs
    We should win it but I’m not overly optimistic we will

    If we concede a goal and have to chase a lead we will be in trouble

  52. Rochford’s over and back like he did with Donegal.
    Awful. We are a better team but we need to run at them and mix it with direct ball. McBrien should play Comer from the front and use his pace. Great save Reape.

  53. Not great but will take that lead, bit more clinical and we’re easy winners

  54. Way too predictable from mcstay who would’ve expected aido for cillian again.

  55. That’s a very bad defeat but ultimately neither ourselves or Galway are going anywhere and our football ensures we keep teams in games

  56. Not sure how Ruane didn’t get a free out from Gough towards the end.
    Less said about our last piece of play the better. Gifted them the free to win it.

    Had the game won and threw it away. Infuriating.

  57. Congratulations Galway. Deserved victory for directness and courage in last plays. Indiscipline and inept forward play lost it for Mayo.

  58. Beaten by our own lack of initiative and stupid frees given away should have buried them when 3 up. Very disappointing.

  59. Time for Mc Stay and management to go. Badly managed. Dublins to loose now

  60. Congratulations to Galway,well played especially to their goalkeeper who has suffered from very unfair criticism down years,I believe that we played quite well and will still have a very good year,I am sure that the critics will be out in force this evening

  61. Galway deserved that. Fairly obvious what they were at all year targeting today. They were hungrier, took their chances, we did the usual.
    I knew unless we were well ahead we’d be caught. We are soft mentally but we know that by know.

  62. Hard luck guys honestly I’m not one to blame the ref but he was unfair to be honest.

    Anyway neither ourselves or Galway will win Sam.

    Derry will hammer Galway.

    A craic at the dubs and another crack at the rossies so .

  63. How we could leave Coen on who didn’t win any of five 50/50 balls is beyond me. Once Aidan went off we blew up. Management have a lot to answer.

  64. Won’t comment on the match yet. Although I see the usual suspects with their negatives are on already I will say though that Gough had a shocker against both teams..Just not good enough at this level.

  65. Jesus Christ above.

    Gough gave us everything and yet we still couldn’t kill the game.

    How on earth could we not play a sweeper in front of comer? The man had so much space all game it was embarrassing.

    Rochford 5/5 losses in Connaught. Just terrible. Game management in this county is fucking disgraceful.

    3 points up with 5 to go. Only plus is an easier side in the groups. But I wouldn’t bet on us doing much regardless.

  66. We did alright, it was a decent performance anf not exactly a meltdown at the end. Anyone saying ourselves or Galway are going nowhere after seeing that is full of it.

  67. Gough had done a few favours for us as well, so can’t blame ref. Indiscipline came into it towards the end. Too predictable as well. Ryan will rue not giving ball to Mattie. This could kick off Galway’s season.

  68. Oh well. Not nice to lose to Galway but we have the handier group now.

  69. Absolutely disgraceful stuff from Gough at the end. Loftus fouled about 3 times and he gives a free in for the last one, loose ball there to be won by Conroy and he gives a free in.

    Poor shooting and indecisiveness from Mayo cost them but these kind of decisions from an inept referee should be called out until we get referees who are capable of handling the big games and if Gough is meant to be the best of the lot it’s a sorry excuse for what’s there.

    As for those calling for players to be dropped. The same players were being celebrated all season long and one game where they are kept quiet and it’s straight to the nuclear option. A bit of perspective needed lads instead of the usual doom and gloom Mayo supporter reaction

  70. Ah Clare why would Derry hammer Galway and we would beat them .Galway beat us because we haven’t a clue how to close out a game.we can’t win a clean ball in the middle of the field all year and that continues today so reape has to take risky short kickouts which eventually caught us today

  71. Fair play to Galway, really dug it out while playing poorly. We blew it badly unfortunately and our psyche being the opposite of Galway, I expect this current Mayo team to struggle to get over this in the group stage and for Galway this could be the boost they need to drive on in the group stages.
    I would doubt we get past a preliminary quarter final unless we get a very lucky draw. It is very frustrating as I believe we would thrive and be able to beat a team at Galway’s level if we played a faster direct game but the slow build up kills our attack as we just don’t have or maybe don’t pick any long range shooters apart from Fergal Boland so our scores are few and far between!! I do hope Aidan and Cillian give it another year as while they won’t get a celtic cross you are long enough retired from playing!!!

  72. What can we say? We threw that away in spectacular style, if you’re winning by three points heading into injury time you should never lose, simple as. And we can’t pin this one on questionable kickouts, Reape played well today.

    It was telling that in the final play that only Cillian looked ready to take on the shot at goal, you could see just before Diarmuid gesticulating in frustration that no one was making a run for him to play a foot pass inside.

    Congrats to Galway, but it’s hard to see Sam heading West of the Shannon based on today’s final. We certainly are a pale shadow of what we were five, six, seven years back.

    We regroup and head into the group stage, and another massive battle with Roscommon.

  73. As a wise man once said “simply not good enough”. The hard work was done, then we let them back into it. A very poor Galway team. The backs will take the blame but our forward play is cat. 66% possession at half time, nothing done with it really. We don’t carry a goal threat. Midfield did really well and for our man to man and aggressive marking we also limited Galway, they had their goal chances but that is always likely with a press. The lateral slow hand passing side to side and not using pace and power off the shoulder kills us. Sit a sweeper back against Mayo and we can’t break teams down.

    On now to the group stages, games for the sake of it nonsense. Another quarter final elimination incoming.

  74. Gough was not unfair, Clare. Jesus, can we just lose this mentality. We have no killer instinct. And our forward play is shocking. Absolutely shocking. We had control of the game and could not score enough to put it out of sight and let them back into it with indiscipline and indirect play. We are clueless.

  75. How did we manage to lose that?? There are no excuses. Very disappointing. All our wides. We should have been more ahead at half time. Lets see what McStay says – I dont want to hear any ‘spin’.

  76. Lack of in-game management has cost us again. There is no point in blaming the referee or anything external. We do not have the smarts or the intelligence required to manage games to a close. Well done to Galway. They know what to do when the game is in the melting pot and, as a result, are deserved winners.

  77. Can anyone point me to an example where a 45 was brought forward for back chat. Some strange decision for both sides but I thought our inside forwards were the difference. Finnerty and Comer were on form.

  78. Mayo leaderless and rudderless in last 10 mins. That 2 point lead was precious and they should have died for the cause to protect it……Galway got back and deserved it…….Anyway, no great shock as I’ve always thought we were building for past two years and still very much a work in progress. But I don’t think this management is the answer. Ref’s second last gift to Galway appeared to be a guilt free kick for earlier feck up…….It is what it is, back to AI Series prep now…..

  79. F me
    How did we lose that
    Really not bothered that much as we played very well In patches.
    Maybe AOS was taken off a bit too early,
    Both Ciallian and Diarmuid really did not contribute
    A few too many Mayo players for my liking just cannot kick a point in advanced positions, which in effect gives the opposition the option of not following them all the way
    McLoughlin
    Flynn
    Coen
    Coyne
    Would not attempt to shoot in advanced positions
    Finally Ryan O Donohue had Matthew Ruane wide open inside for a goal the time the Galway Goalkeeper got dispossessed
    Brutal Judgement but he is not a passer of the ball.
    Again not overly concerned because of draw facing us.
    A bit of a poisoned chalice for Galway
    They don’t look like a heathy cohesive team
    Especially with Walsh at half-tilt
    We probably did not get much off the red in last five minutes, but he did not cost us the game.
    Please no stupid criticism of management, it was a one kick of the ball game as frustrating as that is.

  80. Very sore about that loss. I know people saying we are in a easier group going forward but I hate losing to them. The player on our side who is not the outfield player has a lot to answer for

  81. Galway have a clatter of lads just back from injury with very little football played. Not sure what our excuse is? We had a full deck today apart from Durcan.

  82. I’m delighted for Conor Gleeson.. He buried his grandmother in Tuam on Wednesday, has taken some amount of stick over the years so fair play to him today…
    Great scenes to be fair …

  83. Fair play to Galway could of gone either way, a nicer group now.Win our first two games and then take our chances on a saturday night in june against Dublin in a neutral venue.The atmosphere would surely be electric.

  84. Mac – fact is the personnel is not there. A lot of mediocre footballers in that squad. That’s the absolute truth as much as people want to blame refs and management.

  85. Sickened, but thought ref was unless, but he gave us more than he did galway. And if they lost, he been lucky to get out of salthill alive. I work in galway, so thank god it bank holiday, so don’t have to listen to that shit tomorrow. Said all week, we have nobody to mark Comer. He a freak. Really anyone could have won that match, but if you think of both guilt edge goal chances, galway had, think they deserved it. So it Cavan away, they fancy a cut of us, but I think we bring same intensity as we did today, we should win.

  86. The problem will gough is he decided to give all 4 big calls in a row to galway in injury time when the game is there to be won, sickening.

  87. Anyup, Galway benefited at the death alright. But on the whole we done very well out of Gough, the hop ball and free for the wrong position etc.

  88. Looks like not winning the League is not the answer either. Congrats to Galway .. A number of controversial calls in the last 10 minutes. The Question will be now where will Mayo play Dublin in a NEUTRAL venue?

  89. Poor to finish. Started to sit back on the lead and not play further up which had served us well all game. A couple of terrible turnovers late on. Positives were much better displays from Ruane and Conroy and both O’Connors able to come on. Paddy’s confidence to go for a score badly missed.

    Home versus Roscommon in two weeks is massive now and not easy in the slightest.

  90. @Peter, it’s hard to take your criticism of players in any way serious.

  91. Mayotillidie, with Paddy Lynch out Cavan should be out of their depth.

  92. Poor call bringing Loftus on in the 66th minute. He was flying against Roscommon, then this insult at being brought on with the game near over. Play players when their confidence is up.

    Galway deserved that today.

  93. PJ with his customary swipe at Mayo in the post-match interview, classless as usual.

  94. When will they announce what day of each weekend these games are on??

  95. The commentary on here is gas as always when Mayo lose. Galway are now great..Mayo will now struggle to win a preliminary qf etc etc.
    Gough did indeed give us a lot of decisions but he gave everything going to Galway at the end. Blatant foul missed on Ruane..he ended up giving the free the other way. Very harsh call on loftus too…gave him no time to play the ball.
    The reality is neither of these teams are good enough to challenge for an AI. On that basis it would have been nice to win a Connaught title..not to be but I still think given the groups Mayo will still go farther but neither are anywhere near winning an AI.

  96. I thought Carney had a very good game
    Got on a ton of ball, look at the facts
    Boland so so this back passing 20 yards personally drives me insane

  97. The sad thing is that today had nothing to do with tactics.

    Just a will to win, and we didn’t display it at all. As someone said, Cillian the only man ready to take it on.

    If anything we were lucky. Reape and brickden saved goals. But how there was no cover on Comer was just disgraceful

  98. First thought is to go backwards or across the pitch. No forward momentum no urgency. O’Shea playing fantastic and taken off. Long kickouts killed us at the end. No killer instinct. Back to the drawing board.

  99. Were are all the critics now about the Galway goalkeeper,he has always been excellent

  100. In fairness well played Galway they will probably give derry a good game I am just sickened that we managed to loose that!

    And I’ll stick by what I said about the ref he made a few very controversial calls at the end though we lost that game ourselves we must can’t close out games.

    Positives though Tommy conroy does seem to be coming back to himself.

    Wonder where the dubs game will be?

  101. We just lacked that bit of quality. And again failing to close out a game when we had a 3 point lead. Great game for McHugh, Callinan and McBrein, great experience.
    Tough one to take, but reality check as to where exactly we are at. Top 4 looks a difficult target now, but who knows.

  102. @Peter – We were very unlucky to lose against one of the top sides in the country on their home patch. I’m not going to blame the ref for the loss because he gave a few decisions our way which were head-scratching to say the least, but that free against Tommy Conroy on Maher (I think) in injury time was an absolute joke and a huge boost for Galway.

  103. Pick an excuse David Clarkes kickouts hang too long in the air, The Mayo Crowd werent loud enough, Freeman had an upset tummy so we had to take him off, our shot selection was a bit off, the dog ate my homework on the galway forwards. Different year same ol result. Management naive and clueless. AOS should have been left on Galway hoovered up the ball in the space he was covering when he went off

  104. I think it’s time you sling your hook Peter. That’s is a disgraceful post. WJ will see you off shortly as you deserve

  105. Corrick can you give it a rest about critics .this a “discussio forum on football “what do you expect will be posted on here maybe good bed and breakfasts and good scram.we should have been able to close that game out today but alot of our old failings came back to haunt us

  106. Time to ban Peter….jeez some assholes think they can say what they want online.

  107. As for Gough, he made a couple of howlers in that he gave soft frees and missed a few blatant ones. Pointless blaming him for the failure to close out the game though.
    The Dubs game will be in Thurles or Limerick probably, unless both consent to Croker. Breffni is another live candidate I’d bet.

  108. You’re totally out of order there Peter calm down we are all disapointed but its just a game of football no need to insult the management like that

  109. We had this game won with 3 up coming into injury time. Again it’s the same old story not able to keep the head and the lead in closing minutes. Very disappointing. I would not have taken off Aido thought he was playing well but how many times did we kick the ball direct to him? Cillian and Diarmuid should have come on at half time for Boland and Flynn adding that bit of experience. The Forward line was very disappointing only Ryan and Tommy showing any form. We were too slow today in build up with lateral hand passing going 2 steps forward and 1,step back. We are down but not out. We can recover and give the AI series a right crack. Maybe we need this kick in the Arse to buck us up! The question is can we finally learn from this defeat and formulate a game plan going forward. Hope other contributors on this blog give the lads a bit of slack. No Mayo Team go out to lose a match. An AI Quarter Final awaits Mayo let’s build now , learn a few lessons and March on.

  110. I think you need to head to twitter for that gutter talk Peter. You’ll find your own type there.

  111. @Corick Bridge: If we had been a bit cuter we would have picked him off for a few goals, once when he lost the ball 40 metres out the field, and a couple of others when he shanked kick outs. But Gleeson will be the hero tonight as he nailed the free at the end.

    The auld phrase about there being six inches between a pat on the back and a kick in the behind has never been so apt.

    People should also just ignore some obvious provocateurs.

  112. Just wondering , was I hearing things ? ..Generous praise from Padraig Joyce for the Referee..Padraig didnt look as happy on the sideline not long before the end of the match. Wonders never cease.

  113. We were outthought and the game was played to Galway’s strengths.
    We looked toothless and ineffectual. Whether we are really remains to be told.
    It is depressing. We’ll have to see what kind of a bounce we have left in us.
    Our ability to score is something serious to look at.

    Galway found it easier to score today and they have people who can score easily.

  114. It was a good game folks with Galway really lifting it as players with little game time like Walsh and Tierney stepping up near the end. Its a great win for Galway and with lads back now and more game time into Comer, Walsh, Tierney as well as Finnerty hitting form we can enjoy the win and start to focus on Derry in two weeks. Its a huge win for us to be honest I thought Mayo would win as I said on here but was hoping we could click up a gear which we did. Ryan O Donoghue was kept quiet enough which had a big bearing on the result. Comer back to form but needs more service and we are badly missing McDaid around the middle but he is close to being back and with Tierney back too we have options.

  115. MOTM poll is up.

    Just a quick word on comments, I’d appeal to everyone to keep their emotions in check.

    Peter – you clearly couldn’t so that’s you done for the night and you’re in moderation now too.

  116. Peter – I’ve now seen and deleted all those abusive comments. You’re not just gone for the night for that, you’re gone for good. How dare you abuse the comment facility here in the way you did.

  117. I’ve been following this blog for years but I have never commented although I had the pleasure of meeting Willie Joe in NY. I’m as disappointed as anyone but Peter your comments are so way out of line – what you said about Mc Stay is outrageous and I’m a mother of a child with special needs so I find it particularly offensive.

  118. A good game all the same, kick of a ball, could have gone either way. It doesnt tell us anything about how we might perform later on. Closing out a game to work on.

  119. Jaysus – I’ve been stuck in moderation while the bould Peter has had free reign!! Tis a conspiracy I tell you! I knew Willie Joe was part of the Illuminati…

  120. Bottom line is we had the majority of possession but were too cautious.
    Not a disaster as only beaten by one.
    Ref too fussy,gave us a lot of decisions but made up for it with 2 very soft frees to Galway at the end.

  121. If Mayo get Dublin in Croker ,Mayo supporters should vote with there feet.No doubt McStay and our County Board will bend over for the Gaa again.Only game I will bother going to is Dublin game is in Thurles.Will not be attending Ross and Cavan games.

  122. For anyone that wants to get their mind off that finish…
    Comortas finals on tomorrow in kiltane.sure to be a feisty affair.kiltane meeting belmullet for the first time in a few years

  123. Might workout okay…beat Roscommon and Cavan and your through to play off..

  124. @peter.
    You are an absolute disgrace. Time you headed back into your Bat Cave and never venture out again.

  125. Thought everything was pretty much going to plan but a series of unnecessary and incomprehensible substitutions took the wind out of our sails.
    Really wanted to win that one but our hopes of progressing still in our hands if we can get one over the Dubs in a neutral setting.
    No point in people piling on Gough. He made a host of strange calls but both teams benefitted and suffered from them.
    The lads just have to dust themselves down and go again.

  126. Should of moved aido out to the middle as we we getting dominated in the air, midfield a big big problem as we have no ball winners in the area really disappointed with the impact off our bench thought hession and diarmuid would of added a lot more.

  127. A real sickener losing like that and unfortunately it feels like a defining moment.There was a real lack of leadership there in the end .Matt ruane did well today in a scoring sense and carney did well at times around the middle but you have to have the option of going long on kickouts and we don’t have the players in that area .Losing a 4 point lead and then a 2 point lead in injury time is very poor game management.it won’t be easy for the players to pick themselves up after that.You rarely ever see top teams lose from the position we were in although I don’t think mahers hands were anywhere near that ball when Tommy conroy poked it away .Anyway the wait is going to continue for another few years on the basis of what I saw today

  128. In fairness it was a good game, hard tackling, a lot of wides & some great skill on show from both sides. The referee made dodgy decisions for both sides but unfortunately or fortunately Mayo lost there way in the last three minutes, Gleeson’s free was brilliant, good luck to Galway & more luck to Mayo. Now they’ll start to play a bit better because there’s no more excuses.

  129. Although I never like losing,I enjoyed the game and feel that we will still have a good year,perhaps some of the posters who only like to complain would be better to enjoy the game,hopefully on players and management will be well looked after

  130. We cannot blame the Mayo management. Players have to be able to manage a game and see out 5 minutes of injury time, there was also some lazy defending in the concession of the frees at the end. We did miss some scores but Galway could have scored at least 2 goals. Rob Finnerty was excellent.

  131. Horrible loss but i thought certain players played well. Coen I thought was mighty. Maybe against cavan we can gain some confidence again. Would be weary against Roscommon however, they’ll want revenge. Don’t need to comment on Dublin everyone knows about them

  132. Well done WJ on removing that individual, awfull stuff he was posting.
    Disappointed we couldn’t see the game out today, but well done to Galway.
    We’ll regroup and we’ll be back, much the better after that. Some decisions seem puzzling but overall thought Gough wasn’t bad.
    Thanks again Willie Joe.

  133. Ref was fine lads. Peter relax a bit lad. Look folks we don’t have the stuff that we use to have. It’s chalk and cheese. It’s that simple. Too much expected from an average squad. Enjoy the summer. Watch the matches. Do some gardening. Relax. I hope Derry win it out. Or donegal. Otherwise we are left with Dublin or kerry. ?

  134. Thought Mayo played well, just lack forwards to take scores at crucial times. Galway forwards won it for them in the end. No complaints and hopefully Paddy will be back for next game and O’Connors build on their fitness levels.

  135. Well, it’s horrible losing to that shower….but remember, today wasn’t knockout football. It might very well work out we play galway again later, that’s when we tend to beat them in knockout football. It certainly looked like it was Joyce’s n galways all-ireland there today!!!

  136. God help us when Aido retires. He was the only one of our full forward line to consistently win his own ball. Again.
    Strange decision to take him off.
    I would 100% have brought him back on around the middle to see out the game once it went into injury time

  137. I understand the want by some to throw a positive spin on that but the momentum and confidence Galway will take from that victory will be immense , i fully expect them to actually beat Derry and top their group . Dublin will top our group .

    On our players today , Boland is starting to look totally ineffective as some of us thought might happen as we get deeper into the real stuff . Be hard pick the players up after todsy .

    Mayo support is very poor , its completely dead , no roar , no chant . All half hearted stuff

  138. Good luck to Galway. We need more than good luck, but we will come again. We are Mayo. Up Mayo.

  139. We all know that Ray Dempsey wouldn’t have lost that game from the position we were in

  140. I am just home and I am as mad as hell. We were way better than galway today and we grabbed defeat from jaws of victory. Aido going off was the turning point. That was a terrible pass to conor loftus when the ball should have been hoofed down the field or over the sideline. What has happened to the mayo vocal supporters. We are not good supporters anymore. I am hoarse but a lot of mayo supporters just watch the game. I am on point of giving up but I know I will be at cavan game in 2 weeks time shouting and roaring the team on again.

  141. Mayo are not a top 4 team anymore. We have some good players but we dont have many gamechangers.
    Too many of our players dont have the needed skill level, kicking off weaker foot, hand pass of weaker hand and under pressure they cant take scores from 25yards out. There are at least 5-6 players (i wont mention names) that show the same skill issues over 4-5 seasons. It does make you wonder what is being worked on in training. I think thats the most dissapointing thing that you still consistently see with Mayo teams, while we have great atheletes, players coming into the Senior setup from U20 show the same missing skillset to compete at top level and while is may pass during the league, under championship pressure and speed this comes back to hurt us time and again.

  142. Jimbo, kicking ball to only free man showing surely a better option than giving ball away over sideline so opposition can have a guaranteed attacking opportunity.
    Loftus was unlucky not to get the free, but support was slack for him from what recall also. That said feel over course game we benefitted more from Goughs calls than Galway.

  143. Would you blame any Mayo supporter for not shouting their heads off. Not a forward in confidence on taking a shot on at the posts 45m out. Were pathetic. Enjoy the rest of the championship as a neutral

  144. Many here are a long time involved in football, the game was lost in the 1st half, loads of Mayo possession and very poor finishing, one miss from 20 or 25 yards.

    Walsh played very cleverly, made it look like as if he was injured and turned it on 10 minutes after he came on.

    Comer by far the man of the match.

    I for one was hoping to avoid the Derry group and this has worked out.

    I mentioned this on the day of the draw that the Dublin game must be at a neutral venue, ie, not Croke Park, no disrespect to Louth but they will probably go down by 10 – 15 points.

    Mayo management did make some strange calls, I thought Coyne was good and was surprised to see him go off.

    Plenty of neutral venues, obviously depends on other fixtures.

  145. Gould 0% responsible for our defeat is the first thing Il say. We left at least 0-5 behind in the first 20 mins and you could add a goal to that with a bit more guile and craft. This was all when Galway were tripping over themselves looking like 15 lads who just met each other in the car park an hour beforehand .

    The McLoughlin opportunity when he didn’t shoot with his right in front of the posts inside the first 10 minutes summed it all up. There is a mental block when it comes to finishing and indeed the final pass etc when we get close to the posts. It’s long standing. Of course with the exception of a wise old head like Cillian , Ryan usually and Tommy’s directness was impressive today at times.

    I’m weary of sounding too negative and we will take the learning’s of today ahead of the ‘weaker group’ we didn’t want to be in the hope of building momentum and confidence with hopefully our best available players and staying fit.

    But like so many days gone by we are left to wonder what might have been if we turned out dominance and prime possession into scores and in particular in that first half in terms of today

  146. Bad day at the Office, a game that should have been won. Management McStay and Rochford have to change their game plan big time. Mayo play their best football going forward at speed and playing attacking football, they have to stop this back and side passing . Just look at Donegal football since they got rid of Rochfords style of football. For next two games go all out attack , its better to get beat playing good football then get beat playing rubbish. We are still in Championship but style of play has to change.

  147. The usual predictable outrage in here when AoS gets substituted is tedious, he won a few balls that went into him alright but young Fitzgerald was relatively comfortably on him, on a dry day like that you need direct scoring fowards, his replacement Cillian knocked over a screamers within minutes. the 2 best players on the field were Finnerty and Comer who went for the jugular every time.

    I’ve heard someone quip before that if Anthony Finnerty had stayed living in Mayo young Robert would have become a halfback, some truth in that I’m afraid

  148. @Bate the Blanket…newly renovated Dr Hyde Park is the biggest venue in a line between Mayo and Dublin..and would be a fine choice..Mind you if the same criteria were used as regards Dublin …McHale Park is just as neutral as Croke Park …

  149. Fair play to Galway, they kept themselves in the game, when we should have been out of sight.Thought Gough gave a few questionable decisions to both teams. Just the ones he gave against us in injury time were frustrating. These decisions cost us the game, but at that stage we should have been out of sight, with all the ball we had. It is very obvious to me that lads are afraid to shoot in case
    It goes wide , when they’re in good positions. This has to be coming from management, that they keep recycling the ball until we are 100% sure of getting the score.I witnessed today several lads in position on the edge of the D not taking the shot on , and were just looking around to give the ball to someone else. This over and back has to stop or our season will be over sooner than most people think,I also think an inter county footballer that has not the confidence to kick a point from 30 yards out should not be playing at this level. We did have a few good performances today despite all the doom and gloom. Reepe played well , kick outs were good enough and he did make a good save.Mattie played well, McHugh did well, I was surprised to see AOS called ashore as early as he was.

  150. Just listening to McGinley and Whelan on The Sunday game there. Whelan, like myself, thought those two frees against us at the end were harsh, especially the one involving Tommy as Tommy had got to the ball first.
    Them’s the breaks!..

  151. The reality is that we are better off now having lost the Connaught Final by just one point as we are in a better group… Roscommon even though we beat them are just like us the same group. Teams always learn more from defeats. I would much more prefer to play Cavan ( who are a serious Team to be given full respect) than play Derry.

    Think this way if you were to place a 100 euro bet on Mayo to beat Cavan in McHale Park or have the other choice is to back Galway V Derry in Salthill which would you pick

    Also I would not be too bothered about beating Dublin when it doesn’t matter . The time to beat them is when it is knockout

  152. O’Sullivan, unfortunately for Cavan Lynch done his ACL, be like us losing Ryan.

  153. Thurles/ Limerick or nowhere for Dublin neutral game should start now. If County Board and McStay opt for Croker than Mayo supporters should pull plug.
    We should forget about todays result now there is nothing we can do about it now,so much to play for still.

  154. It doesn’t matter from a footballing point of view where we play the Dubs, we are a million miles off their standard at the moment. I know people will say that we beat them in the NFL, but we barely scraped a win at home when they were just back off their holidays.

    We need to get real, our best chance of winning a trophy passed us by yesterday. We are a top 6-8 team at the moment.

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