Game day: top tier status retention the prize today

This afternoon at MacHale Park we face Cavan in Round 5 of the League. We’re a win away from securing our place in the top Division for another year while the visitors, with just one point on the board after four outings, are fighting for their lives in the top tier. There’s much at stake, then, for both counties at Castlebar this afternoon.

I won’t be there to see it, I’m afraid – matches involving the kids up here today, allied to the fact that TG4 are broadcasting the game live from MacHale Park, made the decision for me to sit this one out logical. Not, mind you, that logic always holds sway in relation to decisions about matches but today it did.

So, what am I expecting to see from my vantage point on the couch? Well, for sure, a big improvement on our extremely poor showing last time out against Dublin, which was unacceptable at so many levels. The way we were overpowered in Croke Park appears to have¬†been acknowledged in our announced line-up for today, with four changes made compared to the team that started against Dublin. The expectation has to be that we’ll front up more effectively today.

While we’re strong favourites to win this one, there’s no doubt but that this is a dangerous encounter from our point of view. Cavan may have little to show for life thus far in Division One but, despite this, they know that a win over us, followed by another win – the obvious target being Roscommon in Round 7 –¬†could well be enough to save them.

We can, then, expect them to throw everything at us this afternoon. We need to be ready for this, more so than we were when Monaghan came to town with a similar aim in mind in the first round of this League campaign at the start of last month.

Despite this, you’d have to think that an improved performance from us today will be enough to secure the spoils. If we do this, it’ll leave us nicely poised to have a proper cut at Tyrone and Donegal in our final two matches. It’ll also mean – should Roscommon lose again today – that we’ll have secured our Division One status for another year with two matches to spare.

That’s a target worth shooting for and one that I hope, from afar, to see realised this afternoon. Safe travelling to all heading to Castlebar this afternoon. Up Mayo!

40 thoughts on “Game day: top tier status retention the prize today

  1. My first ever National League match was Mayo v Cavan in Westport 1962. Heading to Castlebar today. I’m hoping for a similar result but a higher score.

  2. Just checked the results archive, Umpire – that match was played on 4th November 1962 (I was less than two months old then, by the way) and the final score was 2-3 to 1-3 in our favour.

  3. Must have been blanket defence back in 1962 as well, 5,scores to 4…Hope it’s a little more entertaining this afternoon!

  4. Hopefully you’ll get a few more scores today umpire.
    From what I’ve seen of Cavan they enjoy putting high ball in on their full forward line. That has traditionally caused us problems although we did deal with it well against Roscommon.
    It would be great to get a comprehensive victory to banish the ghosts of two weeks ago and give everyone confidence going forward. If we lose Omagh looks a daunting task next weekend.

  5. Alot of blankets also out in the 80’s, my home club won their only title ever back in 1983, full time score was 4 points to no score, a county junior title.

  6. Bloody hell Willie Joe, 1962, a vintage year for talent! I’m a Paddy’s night baby myself so I was a little Christmas bundle of joy! Anyway, back to the serious business at hand, now that the lawnmower is back at work the smell of mowed grass drives Mayomen bananas so I think we will win handily enough today.

  7. The glory of a satellite dish means I’ll be watching this one from the couch in Switzerland.

    A lot of pace in that back line and should allow us to attack in waves from deep – if our running game of old is facilitated. I understand we need to mix it up with a couple direct into Andy but I’d like to see us play to our strengths a little more.

    Looking forward to watching Loftus get a run. Boland has shown real promise and Irwin should get some time too. Add in DOC and Coen and there’s a good crop coming through.

    Maigh Eo abu.

  8. I was just chatting with the brother on the way over to the game and we reckon mayo should have a second pitch down in Glosh in Blacksod. Build it on the side of the peninsula and don’t worry to much about rolling it either, let the rushes grow in one corner like Kilmovee years ago as well. Bring the Dub’s down there for league games.
    Mayo by 6 today

  9. Game on now Went to sleep before half time Some lovely points scored but there is also a lack of urgency

  10. Something seriously wrong, Mayo can’t deal with the blanket defence, Cillian seems to have lost his confidence, very poor all round. The fight is not in alot of the players anymore.

  11. Pathetic. The innovation and creativity appears totally coached out of this team. Quality players making same mistakes repeatedly. Back and over across the 45 over and over again till the ball is lost. Cillians frees at the same level as a junior player. This was back to the bad old days. I’m usually an optimist but this rot shows all signs of being terminal. When we kick the ball its into the corners where it’s almost impossible to score from. Depressing stuff all round.

  12. Time to play McLoughlin sweeper.

    Time to play Cillian in the full forward line. Like a lost puppy today. Needs to get his mojo back.

    Time to get the feckin finger out.

    That was awfully lacklustre today.

    WJ I’d love to know how many goal chances we’ve created in the league so far.

    Kirby was the only positive from today.

  13. There is something very wrong here. Defence is a shambles, midfield can’t win, zero creativity up front, Cillian is not a half forward and actually seemed completely uninterested in being there today and his dead ball kicks were shocking, Clarke’s kickouts still problematic. There is a serious systems failure happening here. The team do not seem in any way motivated.

  14. Absolutely pathetic where is the urgency from our players,I tell ya championship is not far away and based on current form we won’t get out of Connaught… Jesus Cavan beat us at home ffs

  15. Lads I think it’s safe to say that gone championship ye will have setup a lot differently than in the last few league games.
    McLoughlin will be back as sweeper and ye will go back to a running game with your half back line bombing forward.
    Mayo are at their best playing this way.
    Seems to me a case of the Mayo management keeping the powder dry for championship!

  16. …glad I stayed at home for this one…I was still hurting from really really poor display and the lack of tactics and stomach on show in croke park against the dubs…and had a bad feeling about today… Jasus the lack of a plan A or Anevermind B on show then and today is unbelievable. The season ticket is on donedeal…
    Seriously though I hope there is some good reason behind the woefulness……. come on ta f..

  17. Referring to the Mayo team in language used in a comment above is appalling..understandably we are well annoyed by result..

  18. Can anyone explain why we spent all of last year building mc loughlin as a sweeper and we have abandoned it completely???Anyone??

  19. Backdoor sam, I know they don’t “owe” me anything, iv supported them to the hilt, but, as hard as it may seem, they are done!! Im only calling it as it is. A great team then, were but the are finished (thanks for rverything)

  20. Higgins has to taken out of the full back line has spent more time on his backside over the last couple of years,will be moved to the half fowards line where his speed will unsettle defenders, its only now we realise what the Doc and AOS means to this team

  21. Juan,
    I know that you are very annoyed at the result but giving out about the players is not right. Those guys have put in so much effort over a number of years now. But its clear that certain guys can’t be taken off, this is the way with most teams even an underage club level. A fresh approach is needed all round. Certain players should show leadership to the younger guys but this did’nt happen today ( bar Keegan’s 2 points ). [Deleted].

  22. I know everyone is pissed – as I am myself – but can everyone please keep the emotion out of the comments? I’ve deleted a few already and no doubt will have to do the same with others before the evening is out. I’m not saying that people can’t criticise the display – and I’ve plenty to say on that in my match report, which will be up shortly – but keep it reasonable.

  23. I don’t know wherd to start? I played rugby with Rochford years ago, always found him a gent, I work in theheart of Dublin City, , an have (as most of ye)defended these boys to the hilt. But, we were bet by a disfunctional cavan team? Wat is Rochie at? I pray hes funning the legs of them in training, but zi don’t believe it. Loads a ppl on here crying out fot Loftus to be started! Wat did he do? Absolutely nothing!!!!!! Gimme Jadon Doc any day a the week. We’re a team full of journey men at this stage, if any1 doesnt understand the term, then look it up. Cant see the light, so disappointed! This was the game to bounce back, but we’re going nowhere..Salthill looking a daunting task by the second.

  24. Your first post jusn is a disgrace .. it was an extremely disappointing performance .
    And people might be angry frustrated etc .
    But to call the players that .. you should hang your head in shame.. go off and do something else with your time .. after the sacfices those lads have made over the last 6 years .. im fuming with the performance but ill continue to support the team

  25. A couple of loons losing the plot here. It was desperately poor this afternoon but not quite armageddon either.

    Calm down and give them time to sort it out. Firing accusations and half-truths about in March won’t get us anywhere.

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