Gavin Duffy development can only be a plus



I haven’t had too much head space to think about the Gavin Duffy development (we’ve an impending close relative situation here, the details of which I don’t propose to go into but which will mean I’ll be absent more than present from here over the next week or so) but it’s a move that’s worth referencing all the same. In doing so, I’d have to agree with those who see it as a positive. Put simply, I don’t see any downside to the development and I think this remains the case if he never sees any action this summer.

As has already been said in the comments, Gavin’s addition to the set-up could have the effect of electrifying our championship preparation, with his professional sports background and the out-of-the-box thinking he might bring adding a new dimension to how we approach this championship campaign. It could, of course, turn out that he adds little or nothing to the cause but I can’t see him taking anything away from it either. In that sense, adding him to the ticket can only be a positive.

And top marks too for James Horan, who has had a fair few barbs flung at him of late about his being hidebound, conservative and dictatorial in his approach. If things don’t work out for us this summer, the decision to bring Gavin Duffy on board could well become another stick to beat the boss with but, you know, there’ll be plenty of sticks to hand in that event already. But if the coming championship campaign does go the way we all want it to go, then this development could well be viewed in an entirely different light.

64 thoughts on “Gavin Duffy development can only be a plus

  1. Was interested to hear your opinion on it WJ, agree with you fully! Well said

  2. Disciplined, professional, tactically aware are just some of what he can bring to the set-up! We’ve nothing really to lose but plenty to gain, time will tell and hopefully in a positive light!

  3. Utility midfielder maybe? Unlikely he’ll be starting with Gibbons and Seamus at centrefield and A. O’Shea roaming between the lines I don’t think Horan will risk adding another midfielder there especially one without real match sharpness. If he sees game time it will be as an impact sub. Himself and Parsons coming on in a game would definitely energize the midfield.

    You could see him moving into some kind of unofficial trainer role with his background, long-term that would be very positive for Mayo and only add something to the good work done already.

    The skill set of a rugby full back definitely suits Horan’s tactics though – run and gun!

  4. I dont know about Duffy. I mean he will be an asset if he comes on and plays well. So are we looking at a super sub here and what position would best suit him?

  5. If things work out for Mayo / JH this season it’ll be a master stroke. If they don’t it’ll be seen, and alluded to, as a sign of desperation.

    I think I agree with Willie Joe when he says “Put simply, I don’t see any downside to the development and I think this remains the case if he never sees any action this summer”.

    Even if he doesn’t play a game he brings something with him that can only be of benefit e.g. knowledge, skill, understanding, professionalism and lest we forget experience of playing for a team that has always been the underdog and has had the odds stacked against it since the get go.

    Any man who has experience of a team taking it to Stade Ernest Wallon and winning will have no fear of Hill 16. That can only be of help.

    I think Mayo can only benefit from his being on board regardless of whether he plays or where he plays if he is lucky enough to make the transition.

  6. Surely ta god ye’re not saying there would be a place for a retiring rugby player on the mayo squad

  7. Generally I’m positive about it, but it does bring out the showbiz dimension – David Brady shooting his mouth off on Newstalk. i’d have preferred to learn about it the night before the Roscommon match.

    The County Board statement (no less) indicates that some thought has gone into it, so presumably it’s not just a ‘why don’t you come on down and do a few sessions with us’ type of development.

    We can’t lose really and you can see JH being very attracted by the Rugby dimension, which given the way the game is going should be an asset.

    The real question is where he might fit in. Full back? Full Forward? CHB? Could have potential in all three, though as an impact sub, initially at any rate.

    Challenge matches, if happening (and if not behind closed doors, which has probably already happened), would be very interesting.

  8. As someone who played both Rugby and Gaelic football in the 1990’s (in Kildare, Senior club and Leinster J1 Rugby) I think this is a brilliant development.
    A couple of points.
    1. 2 different games, Rugby (as a back) is slow, slow, quick, quick, quick especially outside second centre. Wingers and fullback are effectively going at full tilt when they receive the ball. (after playing both codes) it was the one thing I took back to Gaelic in that to break the tackle it’s very hard to stop the guy that receives the ball at full speed. Too often in Gaelic we see the guy receiving the ball either static or going backwards. Recall the league match against Dublin when Seamus O’Shea (big man and all that he is) was dispossessed quite easily by Diarmuid Connolly because we were messing around and Seamus had no momentum when he received the ball.
    2. Gaelic Football is more lung busting in that for the whole 70 minutes you are on the go (no let up) I would assume that as with many Rugby footballers they keep their fitness up by playing Gaelic football during the summer. Presume Gavin has kept his hand in and could definitely do a job for us. (By the way Geordan Murphy played a good bit of Gaelic football with us and was one of the most gifted Gaelic footballers around before he turned professional)
    3. Gavin could do a job for us in many ways, utility back (Sweeper), Centre back, man marker (match MDMA and keep him out of the game) apart from Cluxton its MDMA that makes the Dublin team tick. Every team has a danger man and/or system its getting the match ups right against each team that makes the small difference between winning and losing.

  9. If the AI final is the acid test then Cillian and Andy might be retained given a good run in this years Championship. That leaves at least 4 vacancies in this quarter. Mayo need to reinvent their attack strategy for the coming season if we are to succeed. In the AI final last year when defenders done their primary job the attack was found wanting. Especially their ball winning ability. Similar to the story in 2012. Gavin Duffy might be the answer to this problem. Personally I think we probably have most of the team we need in place, already but we should be open to all alternatives. This is a great move by the management. Gavin’s suitability or otherwise can best be tested in the A v B test games in training. Best of luck to Gavin on this adventure.

  10. Alrightman if he can prove himself over the next few weeks why shouldn’t there be a place for him? If he can’t then he won’t play- simple. He’s a Mayo man who is in peak physical condition, is strong as a horse and brings a wealth of knowledge re training methods etc. Cannot see why giving him a trial is any harm

    It’s been pointed out ad nauseum how it can only bring positives. If he’s not good enough, he’s not good enough, move on. If he’s good enough why should the fact he’s a retired rugby player count against him? I want any man who can do a good job for my county whether he’s a rugby player or snooker player frankly

    Anyone I’ve been talking to in real life has seen this as a major positive. I live in Galway, down here plenty are classing it as a real positive move for Mayo. Many even wished he’d declare for Galway as an adopted Salthill clubman 😀 😀 😀

  11. Where would you put him as he might be a bit slow and rusty having not played so much football.

  12. One thing he certainly won’t be is slow :D.

    Joking aside, In all fairness I do get what you’re trying to say I think. I’m guessing you mean slow as in slow to react possibly on a football field, slow to respond to breaking ball, stuff like that etc. Definitely valid, yes, being away from football for so long your eye certainly won’t be in like other players. However I’d imagine he’ll be spending loads and loads of time on this over the coming weeks. It’s great he only has to focus on skills, he’s as fit as a fiddle and strong as a horse as it is

    He could play anywhere I’d say, probably around half forward or 3rd man mid/sweeper would be the aim I’d imagine. It’ll certainly be interesting to see though. Could be a full forward option too. He’ll be kept away from the backs I’d think unless as a sweeper

  13. Delighted he’s joined up, i tell ya one thing, no tiring defender will want to see Gavin Duffy charging at them at full tilt in the summer heat! Fair play to him a proud Mayo man, hope gets game time against Leitrim/Roscommon.

  14. Ciaran have ya taking in to account his age and how long its been since he was involved with the county minors. This is far from minor or galway club football. Its a clutching at straws move by j.h and i cant imagine how this could be progress

  15. Anne-Marie, GBXi and Tubberman , I replied to each of you today on the earlier thread ‘James in the news’. Sorry, I hadn’t realised there was a new thread up.
    It’s too much to repeat it here again! Thanks.

  16. If nothing else Connelly mightened get it as handy pulling on Duffy’s geansai.

    As regards will Duffy be good enough to play, I ‘ll gladly leave that decision in the safe hands of the man who took us from nowhere and brought us on a journey to two AI Finals.

  17. Pearse Hanley said last year what we missed in final was a forward who could break the line.
    Sounds like horan thinks the same. Glad to see James thinking outside the box.
    If it works grt, if not no harm done.

  18. It sure is tough being a Mayo supporter! 🙂 I still think back to that evening leaving Longford in the car in 2010 how I felt. That evening, never, never did I ever think we would be in a position like we are now, 4 years later. Remember we can do our bit too, being the 16th man!

  19. Alrightman he’s being assessed over next few weeks. If as you suspect he shows to be not good enough then he’ll be let go, simple as

    You’re acting (along with many others for some bizarre reason) as if the County Board have announced he’ll be playing number 11 for the remainder of the year end of and no-one else has a chance of getting in instead of him

    If you are convinced he won’t be up to it, you’ve nothing to worry about as he won’t be played in that instance.

    Think positively ta feic sure who knows he may win us an All Ireland yet, keep the faith

    I’m happy to see the vast majority on here and Twitter etc as well as GAA pundits I’ve heard from see this as the positive move that it is

  20. Alright man

    Are you kidding? Clutching at straws my eye, the dubs and Kerry would have him in a flash onto their panels to see what he can offer. Duffy was a professional rugby player and is young enough to still be a factor, look at Ryan giggs, vinny claffey or John Doyle, they were flying high in their late 30 s , I think his presence alone will buck some of our lads up a bit, maybe enough to be worth the effort they put in.

  21. I have already said in a previous thread that I cannot see him taking a playing role due to the length of time out of the game. I’m not a big rugby fan although I do follow the results each week. In considering his possible playing I have to wonder why Connacht released him. The suggestion I heard is that he has lost a yard or two of pace.
    However I do think he can have an impact on the team with his experience of professional training and playing in hostile and strange environments. Also one of James’ biggest problems must be keeping a freshness about training etc. for a panel most of whom are four years on the road. Gavin Duffy’s presence can have a big impact. I agree that there can be no downside to his joining up. If he does become involved on the playing side fair play to him and it would be something of a [very welcome] fairy tale.

  22. All I could hope that day was, that there wasn’t a Rossie with a camera taking a photo of us queueing to record our season tickets at half time. Our faith has proven well placed since.
    This team (squad and management) owe us nothing.
    Perhaps we owe them more.
    Roars and support, when games turn away from us.
    We are a long way off the level of the Dubs in one facet only – support when things are not going right.
    Level that and this is our year

  23. AndyD

    No doubt he’s lost a yard of pace- in pro Rugby terms though! He’s still a very solid player and by all accounts he had a number of offers In France and England (Grenoble and London Irish were two I heard) but wanted to remain in Salthill with family

    I’d say Connacht let him go as Mulianina, Aki are two new players coming in and they probanly wanted to prioritise youth like Leader and Layden (former Rossie minor speaking of Rugby/Gaa connections) etc which is understandable. From plenty of Connacht fans I discussed it with at the time, many were surprised he wasn’t given one more year, especially when Swift was.

  24. I do Hope Gavin Duffy is the missing link that will make the difference and give us a serious leader on the field. It’s a big ask and some noses are sure to be knocked out of joint if he is just parachuted into the starting line up.
    However if it’s handled well and he earns his place and fits into the team as a team player then this has serious potential. It’s risky but as they say fortune favours the brave roll on the summer Maigheo Abu

  25. David i cant see how bringing a 33 year old out of practise man into the squad is of any use. Yes johnny doyle has been a quality player in his 30’s thats true but johnny doyle hasn’t being out of the game for years. I cant see duffy bringing anything to the pitch unless in some kinda coaching roll maybe.

  26. David Beggy did not play Gaelic until he was nearly twenty, all rugby prior to that, he went to back to rugby late in his career and ended up playing for Leinster. During his GAA interlude he did okay picking up two Celtic crosses.

    Gavin Duffy broke into one of the top teams in the English Premiership in his early twenties and played with World Cup winners. I watched him play in the centre as a young lad with Will Greenwood one of the finest the English game has produced and a World Cup winner and Duffy did not look out of place. He is still fondly remembered
    and highly respected at Harlequins.

    I wish him well.

  27. I hope im not in breach of house rules here, but who would you rather see coming on in the last 10 mins of a match to try and win the game, a small left footed corner forward, who to be fair can score great points when your ahead but is unable to make any physical or scoring impact when the game is in the melting pot, or Gavin Duffy a former proffesional rugby player who can swat “amateur” players to the side at will, and has the experience of playing under intense pressure week in week out for over 10 years????? I think its a no brainer. He could be the man to take us over the line! Who knows?..

  28. One of they key things the current squad are short on are leaders. This was evident in a number of our league games in recent months not to mention our last two AIF appearances. Duffy is a leader and his presence on the field alone would lift both players and supporters. This is where he can make a profound impact.

  29. You can’t buy duffys experience simple as that. You can never have to many pro’s. in ur squad

  30. Welcome back Gavin D, will shake things up at training and keep our opponents guessing. Even better AOS will have somone to pass the ball too. !!!!

  31. hope he is given game time in full back line. Mayo need someone TO COMMAND areaaaa,We are so vulnerable under high ball, Welcome back G.D.and good luck to you and all for commming championship,congrats J.H.Mayo have lost both 2012 and 2013 finals on soft goals conceded, time to stop blaming forwards,as P.Phas said go out and win the bleddy thing.

  32. I very much welcome this development. Gavin Duffy, a great player for connaught and other rugby teams will end his sporting career with us. I cant put him in any team place at this moment but i feel he will add alot to the squad. Congrats to James for doing this, i feel it cant only be positive. Beyond our team, it also has a cultural signiicance on the closing gap between sports and players willing to see the benefits of all sports to their development. Granted we have had this in the past with Kevin Moran playing for both Dublin and Manchester United as well as Mick Galway playing for Kerry and Munster rugby. i feel it is a great devlopment on many levels

  33. ‘ Gavin Duffy development can only be a plus ‘ – I really hope so?

    I really do hope it works out, but that depends on him being able to re-adapt to Gaelic Football, and match the different fitness dynamic and levels for this round ball game, then fully committing to it (difficult for a previously professional sportsman with a young family), and being able make it at the highest level ( which has moved on greatly in the last 12 years).

    Let’s wait and see what his couple of promised weeks turns in to? While it would be a big bonus I’d he could hack it in the senior panel, hopefully he’ll achieve at least a position where he can influence the squad with the positive aspects of professional team sport, and some phycological benifits on a winning mentality in particular !!

  34. To be honest, I don’t know much about Gavin Duffy, except that he was a stand out player on the Mayo minor team that lost an AI to down, so I googled his bio. Now I know there’s a tremendous amount of enthusiasm for his return to GAA football, but there’s nothing in his most recent sporting exploits to suggest he brings anything to the Mayo setup, other than a good physical frame.
    Looking at this bio, he’s a professional rugby player, but no record of distinction from what I can tell. Physical presence for sure, but we have much of that already! looking at this objectively, it’s still unclear to me how he can improve the Mayo senior team. So while I think this is novel, it’s very risky and uncharacteristic of JH. We as supporters don’t know what JH has planned for him, so we’ll have to wait and see how this develops, but I fail to see how there could be so much optimism for a lad who hasn’t kicked a competitive County GAA ball in recent years.
    But I wish him well and, I trust JH’s judgement, for now 🙂

    Gavin Duffys Bio from Ultimate Rugby dot com

    Born 18th Sep 1981,
    Physical Height: 1.85m | Weight: 92kg
    Position Fullback
    Teams Connacht Rugby, Ireland
    Hailing from Ballina, Co.Mayo, Duffy has established himself over the years as a solid fullback who can also operate at centre. At 6ft 2in, Duffy is a powerful ball carrier who has been a shining star in the Connacht set up since rejoining from Harlequins in the summer of 2006. Duffy was named Connacht player of the year for the 2011-12 season and is a vital cog in their development. The graduate from Cistercian College Roscrea made his debut for Ireland in 2005 and has also represented Ireland at sevens and ‘A’ levels.

  35. Some above suggesting that Gavin coming in will ‘shake up’ training and that it will ‘buck up’ some lads…While I’m delighted with GD’s inclusion,to be honest, I don’t believe for a moment that any of our lads give less than 100% either at training or in the jersey

  36. I am hugely interested to see what position James has i mind for him , mayomark mentioned he sees him at half back , i dont see that at all ,
    in the all ireland final against Donegal AOS was brought on up front to shake things up , it didnt work on that occasion.
    My thinking is James is doubling down on this tactic and as a poster said above Gavin will be introduced late in games in the full forward line to dominate a full back and maybe swat a few fellas aside.

    Its massively interesting but lets see what happens, any challenge game coming up? anyone know where he is lining out in training ?

  37. Imagine this, Cunniffe hitting you with his famous shoulder from one side, and Duffy coming in from the other!!! The impact from that would rattle your grandparents never mind yourself 🙂
    I cannot see any negative in this at all. It increases the competition for places amongst the squad, it adds a “beast” of a player in physical terms to our options (95kg of pure muscle capable of running at 20kmph is going to do some damage!). It introduces a professional sportsman to the mix who will have trained under many coaches and seen so many different drills/sessions etc that he will have huge knowledge of physical preparation. And, as I said earlier, the mind-set for positive mental preparation and focus that professional sportspeople have ingrained in them.
    Look at the difference O’Gara made to Dublin in our league game this year. A big strong lad came into the game fresh and his impact brought Dublin back from the dead. O’Gara is far from being the most technically skilled player on the Dublin team but he is still effective and a handful for any defence.
    As the saying goes, “a good big one will always beat a good little one”.
    Hon Mayo.

  38. Still the same age as Dillon but not sure what he will bring to the team. Hailed as a coup here, can’t see why. Now bringing back young Evan Regan the other Ballina man or giving Danny Kirby a gallop would indicate fresh thinking. Still we can look forward to the staple diet of McLaughlin, O Connor and A Moran and perm any three from the following O Connor, Freeman, Doherty, Varley, Feeney, Gallagher if still around, Conroy , actually make that two from the above , I forgot Dillon is back so that cuts the places to two for the aspirants. Still treading the same mill since the Kerry game 2011 whilst Dublin have mixed youth with older guys. If Kilkenny Mannion Cistelloe McCaffrey were Mayo lads they would be doing a ten year apprenticeship instead of holding All Ireland’s.

  39. It baffles me as to why so many people are against Duffy coming into the set-up! Take a step back for a second, last year in the final few minutes of the Dublin game, list the subs that came on. Barry Moran only had a handful of minutes against Tyrone after injury so he wasn’t quite match fit, Doc I think hadn’t played since the sigerson cup final, so was rusty! Imagine a scenario where in that position again, having a look at the bench to bring on someone and you see Gavin Duffy, with the black card rule, he will be a full backs worst nightmare!

  40. I dont see any downside to it, as you will know I am a big fan of jh and feel that he has given everybody a fair chance, so I dont think gd will get his place unless he is good enough

  41. I’m not sure about this. He’s big, powerful and fit, but lads, he’s a rugby player. OK, he played minor for Mayo. So what? It’s too long ago. Niall Quinn played minor hurling for Dublin. The senior team weren’t looking for him back when he turned 32.

    I know Duffy’s played the odd game for Salthill but inter-county is a different planet to club football. If he was that good, Galway would have been looking for him. The fact that his pace has dropped in the last 18 months rings the most obvious alarm bell.

    The only justifications I can see for this are:

    1. He’s being brought in for his ‘professional’ mentality to gee up some of our under-performers and generate self-belief among the squad, not to play on the team

    2. James Horan is going with the running-offloading game for 2014 and has effectively given up on the notion of kicking quick ball into the corners. Duffy will be a second-half sub option in this strategy, probably at 11

    3. James is getting desperate and is looking for a magic bullet to solve his forward-line issues

    To me, this is a strange development. Will Mayo’s squad be trimmed before the championship proper like it was last year? If so, and Duffy makes it, that’s going to spread some resentment amongst those cut from the panel.

    And as pointed out above, this brings a showbiz development that we can do without. Aside from the smart-arsedness we can expect from Breheny, Brolly, Spillane, etc., imagine what our friend from the Connaught Telegraph is going to do with this news.

    Best thing that can happen is to see the man do his stuff in the Hyde on June 8th. Hopefully he makes a fool of us sceptics. But for now I’m in the ‘unconvinced’ category.

  42. Didn’t JH or the County Board say recently that the panel was open ended and so did not exclude people specifically?

    In terms of new talent, do Diarmaid O’Connor, Stephen Coen, David Drake, Mikey Sweeney, Adam Gallagher, and new improved Conor O’Shea not tick those boxes?

    Isn’t it the case that Evan Regan has chosen not to make himself available? Question is here, if you have Conroy and Sweeney firing effectively, where does Regan fit in?

    Danny Kirby? Try by all means, though an Offaly friend of mine who is very partial to May, was scathing about him in the Club final.

    Maybe new guys are getting it hard to break in because the existing guys are pretty good.

  43. great debate and discussion however other than the fact GD has been invited to train with the squad it’s all hypothetical after that, at this stage.
    It is an unusual and rare opportunity . Coming from a different sport – professional and played with an oval ball – some will question the wisdom but if it was someone from Aussie Rules (a professional sport with an oval ball) there would probably be less questioning of the fit across sports.

    It’s a management call after all and I believe our management are smart enough to weigh up the risks and make the call on this. I can picture the anti-JH brigade reaching for the keyboard right now to dispute that but there you go. In any type of management the challenge is to come up with solutions to problems but to do that management have to recognise the problem in the first place. I’m thinking that’s what’s happened here. JH and his team, I would wager, know better than any of us, that Mayo have sometimes lacked leaders (note plural cause it takes more than one) on the pitch who can step up when the going gets tough and motive those around them. If GD is a possible solution and increased the sum of the parts then it would be remiss not to go for it. I’d be amazed if James isn’t absolutely aware of the risks to the setup and himself if it doesn’t work out and didn’t dwell long and hard on the pros and cons before going ahead with it and the plusses must surely have outweighed the minuses. If they didn’t it wouldn’t have happened.

    There are two parts to the debate – and they reflect the two different stages of the strategy of JH and his selectors
    (1) whether GD merits being brought into the panel in the first place and
    (2) now that he’s in what part he will play when the action starts

    The first stage as to getting him involved has been duly considered and the result is the decision to invite him in. Let’s accept that is a decision made and the right one for justifiable reasons. The second decision has yet to be made I’d hazard a guess. What part he will play on the pitch remains to be seen but he hardly came in on any firm promise to play – like all players he will have to earn his chance so we will have to wait and see.

  44. Players who have been given many chances and havent delivered can have no complaints if someone like duffy comes in, performs, and jumps ahead of them in the pecking order. its about winning the big one and to do so you have to explore all options. its the same in any walk of life, if you perform you get rewarded, if you dont well you get the P45. why should James horan reward loyalty if its to the detrement of the teams chances of winning an all ireland? some players have been given so many chances yet dissappointed time and time and manager as a result has to look at an alternative. It IS late in the day but im sure if GD had been given the P45 by connacht earlier in the season James would have made the move then too.good luck to the lad!

  45. Cork gets rid of several of their 30s (+ ), 6 ft( +) players experienced players and its seen as positive and a statement of intent for the future. Mayo brings a 33 yr old inexperienced Gaelic footballer on board and its seen by some as if its the x factor to get us over the line. Plezze. This will end in tears.

  46. Pocaimora different scenarios ? since James horan took over we have performed far better than cork have in the championship…we still have a decent team and have proven to be not that far off winning sam. he has added to a good side in the hope of taking another step forward. Cork on the other hand have had a few disappointing championships …one too many by their own high standards, and have taken the appropriate action. no guarantee that GD will be a success but its a neccessary risk worth taking if we want to step our performance up another level. on top of that all the cork 30 year olds had medals and had prob lost the appetite….Duffy you would imagine has the hunger they prob lacked. it will make for interesting viewing and i dont believe for one sec its about showbiz!! if manager was about show biz conor mort and kieran Mc would have been involved

  47. In fairness Ted, Ciaran Mac is the last person you would ever associate with showbiz – he never sought publicity. The opposite, in fact …

  48. Fair point Anne Marie….he never sought it, but got it! But ur point is a valid one!

  49. Catcol

    Danny scored Castlebars 2 goals in the final and probably was one of the better players. So i cant see how someone could be scathing about that. Big man, fit and athletic. There would be nothing wrong with giving him a chance.

  50. Yes shero, I noted that, and I thought he had a good semi final. But JH seems not to have noticed, and he must have a reason. I cited my Offaly friend as an objective outsider who would be quick to talk him up if he thought he fitted the bill.

    The same friend keeps asking the question: where are the specialist forwards whom JH has discovered and groomed (if that word is permissable these days)? The answer to that is Sweeney and Gallagher: all the others are not necessarily there to score and score only. Interesting though that JH has been talking up Darren Coen, though he hardly featured during the league.

  51. The fact that some people cant see the potential positives in this move leads me to believe they have been armchair fans for too long and haven’t been out on a pitch or in a dressing room in so long that there is no point discussing their viewpoint on this – because they just aren’t going to be able to get it.

  52. I Hope Gavin Duffy can offer something to Mayo but as usual some mayo fans just piss us all off by getting ahead of themselves and creating hype. That’s why some mayo fans are sceptical about the move.

    The man is 32. He’s not a young fella anymore and I don’t except much off him. Alan Murphy came back to GAA too late after his exploits with soccer and had no impact. Eric miller who was a British & Irish Lion couldn’t cut it with the dubs when offered the chance.

    Personally I think it’s Horans way of deflecting attention from the reporting of alleged recent troubles in the mayo camp by the media and he could also just be willing to give Duffy a chance to shine in the green & red. He’s killing two birds with one stone as the saying goes.

  53. Patriot, with respect, I think the Eric Miller comparison is not valid.

    Miller played gaelic as a youngster but not at the highest levels, as he said on Newstalk. Wasn’t on minor teams and so on and it was club stuff. Gavin Duffy was probably among the top players of that 99 minor team, if not the top. He has gone on to a successful rugby career from there.

    Duffy may not cut it, but no harm trying. It would have been better to keep it low key, but once Brady went public in the way he did, then its a big event, when keeping it under wraps would be better.

    Still, I’ll hand it to Duffy, he’s not saying anything, at the moment anyway.

  54. I for one “dont get it” lots of posters seem to have Duffy already mowing a swarth through terrified defenses ,commanding the square or providing much needed leadership on the field.Makes me wonder what Caff, Keegan, Higgins,Mc Loughlin, Osheas et al have been doing for the past 4 yrs.
    This is a brave move no doubt and if the squad buy into it there could be some advantages, if JH takes advantages of Dufffys supposed nous as a professional athlete, maybe training can be freshened and the belief in self may improve individually and collectively, it needs to ,and I will be delighted if so ,but I’m not getting excited,because I saw Duffy play in his last season for Mayo -yes he was good ,,as good as Gill ,Coady, Moran, Kelly,Dillon.. jees what a team .but 1999 is a long time ago in football and there is No successful precedent to this.. But hey,
    I’ve been livin in hope since the 60’s so whats another year.

  55. I listened to a lot of professional analysts over the last few days re the Gavin Duffy work out( and it is only a work out yet ) with the Mayo squad . Not one person has said this is bad for Mayo football . As someone close to camp said Duffy will be a great challenge for our players in training to mark a strong back of forward . It can only freshen up training sessions and for our lads to learn how to stop a big strong man running through our backs like what happened in this years league .So if he never pulls on the Mayo jersey for the championship he will still have benefit the Mayo squad .

  56. Let’s be clear. Talk of Gavin Duffy being the saviour of Mayo football is complete and total nonsense. The real saviour of Mayo football lies within the players themselves. As Ann Marie stated, “They owe us nothing” but by God ; They owe it to themselves. The players are the ones who put in the hard yards, we’re the ones who occasionally roar from the sidelines when things are going well.

  57. Gavin Duffy will make the panel or indeed the starting 15 IF he is good enough……..and if not he won’t. I see no problem with that. He will have to prove himself in training and in A v B matches where he will have to engage with some of the best players in the country some of them fairly big hardy bucks themselves. They won’t want to be shown up by anyone so he won’t have an easy ride.
    I don’t buy this stuff about bringing professionalism or leadership to the team………it’s whether he is any good to us as a footballer or not. And that remains to be seen.

  58. I think it is a great move by Horan, no harm having a look, he is not committed to selecting him and it also says a lot about Duffy’s loyalties that he agreed to come back into the Mayo fold. I couldn’t predict where his best position would be, maybe an attacking defensive player like Vaughan or Higgins, Duffy running at you with pace is not a thought id like to be up against. Any reports on how he played for Salthill?

  59. We’ve all been lamenting Pierce Hanley’s absence from the Mayo squad and rightly so as he would surely solve our CF dilemma.

    But maybe Duffy is a slightly older version of Hanley who has been playing another code for a good number of years and if he can make the transition he could have something to offer. He should be able to break a few tackles and even as an impact sub would strike a bit more fear into the opposition than some of the ‘same olds’ who’ve been tried and found wanting over the last few years.

    it’s well worth a shot and if Gibbons is badly injured it could give us extra cover in that central area.

    Nothing to lose as far as I can see.

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