Glancing at Galway, again

This morning’s draw for next weekend’s All-Ireland SFC preliminary quarter-finals pits us, once again, against Galway.

Sunday’s match at Pearse Stadium (throw-in 3pm) will be our fourth meeting with the neighbours this year, having played them twice in this year’s National League and before that in the Dome in the pre-season FBD League. Seán Hurson of Tyrone is the ref for Sunday and the match will be shown live on RTÉ.

Although a national title was up for grabs the last time we played them – at a bright and sunny Croke Park at the start of April – Sunday’s clash carries much more importance in the scheme of things than that NFL Division One decider. Of course it does: this is, after all, a knockout Championship match, a fixture that has to be decided on the day, even if that means extra-time and a penalty shootout.

For what it’s worth, we’ve already beaten them twice this year and drew with them the other time. One of those wins can be easily dismissed as that was just the pre-season joust in Bekan but the League final victory was of greater significance. The draw came in the opening round of the League in late January, when a late, late Ryan O’Donoghue strike rescued a point for us.

We were always to the fore in the Division One decider in early April and our three-point win that day was fully merited. Mind you, we had ‘keeper Colm Reape to thank, as the Knockmore netminder pulled off a succession of saves to keep them at bay, not to mention the self-indulgence of Shane Walsh and his wayward left-footed ’45 attempts.

We both played that day with a high degree of caution, doubtless because both of us had the reasonable expectation that we’d be meeting again, this time in the Connacht SFC semi-final at Salthill, three weeks later. Our defeat to Roscommon, a week after the League final, scuppered that anticipated reunion date.

Galway – despite having to take on Roscommon in front of an outsized home crowd at Hyde Park – handled them far better than we’d done. They came through that provincial semi-final with four points to spare and they then leathered Sligo in the Connacht final. This brought their total number of Connacht titles to 48, once more drawing level with us on the provincial roll of honour.

The Nestor Cup win earned Galway top seeding in the draw for the All-Ireland group stage. The draw wasn’t a kind one for them, though, as they ended up in a group with both Tyrone and Armagh, with last year’s Tailteann Cup winners, Westmeath, in there as well.

The Tribesmen started off their group stage campaign with a solid three-point win over Tyrone at Salthill. There was nothing showy about this victory but there didn’t need to be and it put them in the ascendency in the group from the off, with Armagh stuttering to a draw against Westmeath in the group’s other opening round game.

Galway had their own wobble when they faced Westmeath in the second round. They righted themselves in the second half, however, and they won that one by a decisive eight points.

This meant that – just like ourselves – they went into yesterday’s Round 3 match, in their case against Armagh, knowing that a win or draw would see them top the group and advance directly to the All-Ireland quarter-finals.

Like us – though not in the same way and not as gallingly – they fluffed their lines. Armagh beat them by a point to avenge last year’s quarter-final shootout loss and send Padraic Joyce’s charges skittering into this morning’s draw where – let’s face it – it was pretty much written in the stars that we’d end up facing each other.

Sunday’s meeting between us is a real high-stakes one, between two teams who might have imagined such a clash occurring deeper into the Championship, perhaps in the final itself. Instead, it’s a battle to the death to claim a place in the quarter-final, with another tough assignment a week later for the winners, with many long, depressing months of introspection for the losers.

Thanks to the qualifiers and then Covid we’ve had three knockout Championship meetings with them in recent years. Prior to our 2019 qualifier clash in Limerick, we hadn’t played each other in a knockout tie for twenty years. We’d won that memorable 1999 Connacht final, while their most recent knockout win over us was – and still is – the storied Year Till Sunday one, which launched their charge all the way to Sam Maguire success in 1998.

Our victory for us over them that evening in Limerick four years ago had a real touch of redemption about it. At last, we’d got the better of Kevin Walsh and his bloody shawl and, even better, we’d sent them packing from the Championship to boot.

We doubled the dose over them behind closed doors in the old-fashioned 2020 Covid Championship when we had just a point to spare over them at Pearse Stadium in a Connacht final played in mid-November that year. That was also the most recent time we tasted success over them at Salthill.

The following year – this time in high summer, with over 20,000 supporters allowed to attend that Croke Park Nestor Cup decider at a time when the pandemic’s grip had still to wane – we beat them again, once more ending their interest in the Championship. That was an easier victory for us, as we overwhelmed them in a storming second half to win by six.

They got the better of us in last year’s Connacht Championship, this time in Castlebar, with the crowds back with a vengeance, but this win didn’t carry the same significance as we had the safety net of the qualifiers to fall back on. It was still a damaging defeat, though, and it was a major factor in Galway going further than us in the Championship last summer, for only the second time in over a decade.

Whichever of us prevails on Sunday will, obviously, go further than their vanquished opponents in this year’s Championship. Because it’s Mayo v Galway, popular opinion, as well as the bookies, are calling it as a 50:50 clash.

The Tribesmen might, with some justification, view Pearse Stadium as an advantage from their point of view. We’re surely relieved, however, not to have to play again this year in our unhappiest of homes in Castlebar. In truth, the outcome of Sunday’s game is unlikely to turn on the venue and it’s a tie that’s genuinely very difficult to call, not least given the cloud under which both teams will approach it due to their respective defeats last time out.

Our loss to Cork was an enormously damaging reversal, all the more so in light of the great win we’d recorded over Kerry in Killarney in the group stage’s opening round. While Galway lost to higher quality opposition yesterday their form is, like us, deserting them at just the time of year when they should be approaching their peak.

Neither of us are likely to be able to flick a switch and rediscover the kind of form that we both enjoyed for much of the spring. This could make Sunday’s clash a dour and perhaps desperate battle for survival, from which only one of us will emerge still in the race for Sam this year.

Which of us is best equipped for such an elemental tussle? Let’s end with a vote on that.

Will we beat Galway?

  • Yes (55%, 641 Votes)
  • No (45%, 516 Votes)

Total Voters: 1,157

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177 thoughts on “Glancing at Galway, again

  1. Thanks WJ.
    Out of interest, I note that you said there that Galway are now level with us on connacht titles. That was my understanding also. Wikipedia and a few other sources have them one ahead of us, while other sources have us as level. What the hell is the story with that?!

  2. It is actually 48 Connacht Senior titles each, some publications give Galway an extra one which doesn’t add up when you count back. They won their 44th in 2008 and have won 4 since then, ’16,’18, ’22 and 23. It’s fair to say both our conversion rates to Senior All Ireland titles is poor to say the least.

  3. Ticketmaster showing tickets on general sale at 10am tomorrow but not received any season ticket email yet ?

  4. @williejoe. Being a bit pedantic but the game is this weekend and not next weekend as you say and lots of radio reports also. Otherwise that’s one hell of a preview. It would probably be fair to say galway messed up too and could and probably should have avoided this weekend appearance. Missed a penalty and free at the end either one would have kept them top.

  5. – Delighted its Galway and I hope they have everyone available. Pressure is all on Galway for this one.
    – Re’kindle the spirit of the Feb 2018 league game with not an inch given. The two O’Connors sent off that day which cost us the win.
    – Play to the edge but not over it. Mgmt make the necessary changes and let’s see where that takes us.

  6. I’m sure he’s a lovely fella, but Christ tonight I find it hard listening to Barry Cullinane talking about Mayo and Galway… this rivalry has always brought out the worst in me.

  7. Personally for me after yesterday, I don’t know if I can stomach it anymore. Getting hopes up every year only for it all to go belly up on us. It’s very hard to keep on the road. At this moment in time I don’t even know if i want to go to the game on Sunday, and I haven’t missed a game in years! Yesterday took the biscuit for me completely.

  8. Have management the balls to make the changes? That is the question. It will be a veryh interesting team line out.

  9. Management may make minimal changes. After reaction to yesterday’s performance, they might circle wagons and stick to their belief that their team selection is the one to get them the win in Salthill. If they make big changes, they may be accused of panicking. Time will tell.
    Cool heads needed, if we can get a good game plan for the squad to believe in & get a high intensity, honest effort from the players, we can do it. There’s plenty of pressure on Galway too.

  10. Just looked at our halfback line v Dubs in 21 semi final. Paddy, Stephen and Eoghan. No goal conceded. What was wrong with that. Why not try it again.

  11. Great preview WJ.
    It’s hard to call for sure.
    Could take a touch of genius or an equal measure of madness to clinch it. The prize might just be bragging rights though after the dust settles with just a 6 or 7 day turnaround and off up the road to Croker for another ‘on the day’ decider. Still, momentum goes a long way.

  12. Has Kevin the humility to admit he has gotten the CHB selection all wrong?. If not, Johnny Heaney will win an All Star this weekend.

    Theirs an air of inevability about this one, a week isn’t enough to heal the mental scars of Sunday. Galway are everything we are not, street smart, organised, and know their game plan inside out. Big difference losing to a D1 team by a point, and capitulating against a D2 team who will be knocked out by Roscommon.

  13. I have read alot of Comments since Yesterday on why we lost, go back to the league we lost our way against Galway lucky to get draw, Armagh 5-6 points up and drew, against Kerry in Killarney ok we won scored a goal at a crucial stage when we were 3 points up – Kerry were on top at this stage with 10 min to go.

    There is a pattern with our Mge to try and finish with our best team – this clearly isn’t working . We should have beaten this weak cork team which Roscommon will turn over easily.

    Management need to start with our best 15 – forgot about holding players back. Hession and McLoughlin and conroy should have started – drop Loftus no offence but league and championship are different games – We were expected to bet Cork – why did Mge not give these guys a start – we were expecting to go into a QF in 2 weeks players need match time.

    There seems to be a bit of finger pointing to our Mge – Buck stops with manger – Rochford brought Mayo as close to an all-ireland than any manger has over the last 30 years.
    Alot changed when Hurley Went off – Our Mge allowed or corner backs to push up – which to me is reason why we lost yesterday – homework wasn’t done on Sherlock – Ok we didnt score 15 – 20min and he scored a penalty that shouldnt have been but his pooints from play were the drive cork neeed – its hard to turn a ship when the wind is blowing against you – we were too slow bringing in Hession and McLogihlin – these guys are needed to break the Blanket defence – only way to beat blanket defence is speed – so why didnt they start.

    Manager has the Final Call.

  14. @ Margie. I agree that unless we sort the CHB, Galway will hurt us. It’s very hard to work out whose team is it , whose hair brained idea was it to convert a forward to the pivotal CHB position and that you could have a defensive system without a physical leader at CHB.
    McStay himself needs to stamp his authority on the madness. We have a talented bunch of players that deserve a rock solid platform

  15. listening to james o donoghue on off the ball, its amazing how ex players cant emphasise it enough how much of an influence the crowd can have yet supporters dont realise it . Especially knock out stage , we bring 12-15k to salthill with colour and noise you add to your chance .

  16. Good preview WJ. Definitely a tough draw for us and for them also. On Sunday morning the prevailing view was that we would both top our groups but on a remarkable day of upsets we both messed up and are going to suffer as a result. Whichever of us wins are out against group winners a week later. No doubt our performance on Sunday was disappointing and quite a few of our more experienced players did not play well. Having said that I am genuinely surprised at the level of criticism flung in all directions since. Of course we are all entitled to our opinion and to criticise what we see as shortcomings but the nastiness of some comments is a concern.. It almost appears that some can’t wait to express their vitriol and are only looking for an excuse to let rip.The game is barely 10 minutes old and it starts. The common refrain is will management learn from their errors and drop X Y and Z. Do you really axe a player after one bad game. If that was the case Jordan Flynn might not have been playing yesterday based on some previous games, yet he was by far our top man. True Paddy, Mattie and a few others were poor yesterday but would you really drop such experience for a clash with our greatest rivals. The CHB position is a concern. It is an experiment which had the potential to work and Conor Loftus found himself in excellent positions frequently yesterday but just appears to have lost the confidence to shoot. There have been demands to start Hession and Eoghan Mac two speedsters but no one can really argue that they improved our defence yesterday. Lots say we must name our strongest team (whatever that is)from the beginning but I think it’s almost a case of finishing with our strongest team that bears fruit. We always started our strongest team v the dubs in the good old days but they always finished better than us. I thought we got our selection spot on v Kerry bringing on some quality to see the game out. Only Tommy from our subs delivered yesterday while Sherlock ran riot for Cork when he came on. I still don’t know who was supposed to be marking him. We have to trust our management. They were given the job because it was felt they were the best men for the job. Just because they pick someone we don’t agree with does not mean they are wrong and we are right. After all they see them in training, we don’t. And when it doesn’t work we throw snide remarks about where they are from or their past failures etc etc. McStay and Rochford have both managed all Ireland winning club teams, something not many of us have achieved in fairness. Maybe just maybe we are not as good as we think we are. We have three all Irelands in Mayo yet sometimes have a tendency to look down our noses at other counties as some did with Louth and Cork. We do not have a divine right to beat these teams. No doubt we are all hurting from all those A I losses especially the most recent one and supporting Mayo can be really trying and gut wrenching, but it is our county and rather than dish out criticism when things go against us, maybe we should take a deep breath. Cork have had some horrible days since we beat them in 2011. Their footballers have little support. When Galway are going badly their supporters lose all interest. Kerry supporters give out stink but they know that they will always be back soon.That is one way of reacting to bad performances the other is to be ultra critical of people who are genuinely doing their best to improve the lot of their county footballers . So as we head in as underdogs on Sunday wouldn’t it be nice to think that as a people we are really behind our county team. That was one of the most enjoyable things about the decade after 2011. Going to games in huge numbers and really backing the team. That is what I would like to see this week. It is Galway. Go for it and leave nothing behind on the field or in the terraces. And if you’re not going , try to find something positive to say about the group of people that represent us and carry our hopes and our fears every time they cross the white line. Maigh Eo Abu

  17. We have gone from no focus whatsoever on the centre back position to Conor Loftus being the sole root of all our all fairness the lad is being asked to play in a position he is not accustomed to with a group of very inexperienced backs some of whom are playing their first year in the senior team and operating behind a midfield being beaten in the air .the template for this seems to have come from watching Galway’s John daly and the perceived notion of a point guard or quarterback type player who can control the tempo of a game.I have watched daly and his main purpose is defending the D and I haven’t actually seen anything particularly creative from him aside from a couple of good passes in to comer

  18. Margie, there’s no time for thinking about mental scars at all or even analysing in any depth why we caved, just move on… more a case of next game do or die concentration to the end and pack the defence if leading on 60 mins with big pressure on all the Galway ball carriers. This season we’ve made as many comebacks as losing winning positions. The last day was bad but no just point in over analysis, the players know it’s not good enough and will be determined not to let it happen again. As for Rochford, simply being honest, they’re not psychologists. Momentum is a funny thing. I’ve seen such a swing against us a few times before usually following goals against Ros and Galway a few years back. The Galway one was uncannily similar, we turned around a deficit after a below par start and a Galway midfielder unused to scoring came up and scored a screamer and from there their tails were up. We did the same to Dublin in 21. Management had made most or all of their subs, the players need to organise themselves better and keep up the high intensity needed in championship. On that point I noticed in the league the 2 players most vocal in directing traffic on our side were Coen and Loftus (I think our captain Paddy wasn’t playing in some of those games). Coen was taken off the last day to bring on pace so perhaps better to ensure he finishes games because of his street smarts. 1-1 from Sherlock came from placed balls and 0-1 came from a dud kickout straight to him. Yes he scored a few more and we looked open so the marking was off in a few. O Hora was right on his coat tails for 1 which was big pressure but credit to Sherlock he scored it anyway. I think there were 2 more and those must have been loose. O Hora had some a good job on Cork’s main talisman up to that point who was subbed off for Sherlock and not sure who was assigned or was it simply a team failure. A marker can’t mark anyway if 2 on 1. I hope Callinan is fit the next day, currently the pick of our 3 defender rookies who’ve all done well over the year but they’re nevertheless rookies.

  19. Some pluses for us on Sunday.

    * We’re coming in off a defeat, but so are Galway. Armagh’s recent form had been crap, so a loss to them is significant. All other possible opponents are coming in off a win.

    * Venue – it’s up the road, it’s the neighbours, our prospects there are as good if not better than Castlebar. Think about the alternatives: trips to Kilkenny or Ballybofey. Yes we won earlier at Ballybofey, but Donegal will have massive confidence now, and so will Kildare.

    * We’ve beaten them twice and drawn once this year.

    * I’d prefer to play Joyce’s Galway, than Kevin Walsh’s Galway.

  20. Anyone know who’s the Ref for Sunday’s clash?. Could be a difficult assignment I watched allot of the Cork v Mayo game again, and I can assure you that the Ref wont be getting high marks from the Referee assessor . Bottom line Mayo are going to have be allot better and need to finish allot better than their last two games or we are toast v Galway, even a slightly misfiring Galway. The Tribesmen supporters will have worries about the fittness of Damien Comer, Sean Kelly and the current form of the mercurial Shane Walsh. Padraig Joyce is unlikely to give any concrete information on the fittness of any of his squad, preferring to keep Mayo guessing until the last minute. Kevin McStay will do likewise, mind you its a very long time ago when any GAA supporters could take updates on injuries as concrete. What will the weather be like? who knows, that the choice of Ref , might be time to change a few thing’s up. Would Cillian be able to start, and would he be picked to start? Would Aiden go to midfield even for a spell if Galway were dominating primary possession in that area? .Allot of unknowable things for us Mayo fan’s, so I guess PJ will be wondering as well. Both ourselves and Galway have played to a ‘System’ all this year . The team that throws the curveball successfully on Sunday will probably prevail. Will either manager try it?

  21. I think we have the three fastest footballers in the country. Eoghan Mc, Enda Hession and Tommy Conroy are lightening quick. They really should have all opposition quaking in their boots, if they are let loose.

    If they are used properly they could cause massive damage to Galway, who will have to give up scoreable frees at a minimum, and most likely cards of all colours in trying to stop them in their tracks.

    We are missing a big trick I believe, if we don’t release the hounds next Sunday.

  22. Firstly, I said at the start of the season that I did’nt see Mayo as genuine title contenders this year, due to the loss of Lee and Oisin and the number of inexperienced younger players, along with a new management team and I was worried about retaining our Division 1 status. So I was pleasantly surprised by our league form and I was looking forward to the championship with optimism, tho’ still not considering us as title contenders. However, as John D Hickey used to say “we flattered to deceive” and we quickly discovered the the Championship is a completely different animal and, apart from Killarney, our other three performances have been dismal, as we continue to be strangled by the blanket defences restricting us to lowish scores. This has been compounded by by our other major problem-the concession of easy scores and the coughing up of way too many goal chances as a result of our defensive frailties. We don’t seem to have a proper defensive system or structure, are way too open and loose and our centre of defence parts like the Red Sea as opponents run at us and slice thro’ us.I could see this problem all thro’ the league, but we were able to score enough to win, because defences are not as tight in that competition. I am not criticizing Conor,as he is being asked to play in an unfamiliar position and he is not the only problem. He was obviously put there to orchestrate and set up attacks, venture forward as part of the attack, change the play with kick-passes etc.,but this has not happened to any great extent and, as Conor is not a natural defender, aggressive tackler, reader who can smell danger, this has contributed to how open we are thro’ the middle. This experiment has simply not worked and, even at this late hour must be changed or we will be toast against Galway. We need to put a proper specialist defender at 6,as this is a vital pivotal position and they need to stay centre of the D area and not roam too far from there and to be covered by a designated sweeper in any odd occasions that they do. Who should we put there? Personally I feel Sam C has the attributes needed, O’Hora or Coen, who has a lot of experience there. I also think we need to use a sweeper between the two lines of defence, maybe Hession. We know that scores will be hard to come by against Galway’s tried and tested defensive structure, so it is vital that we shore up the centre of our defence and not give them any easy scores, especially goals-if we don’t do that our goose will be well and truly cooked. We also need to vary our attacks, quick, down the sides, running off the shoulder, points from range and high balls over the blanket into Aido for possession, marks and breaking ball.They will be expecting our usual slow predictable lateral stuff, which is easy to defend-let’s mix it up, throw them a few curve balls and keep them guessing. We need to be really up for this, so lets hope that we are and, if we go down, we go down fighting.

  23. There was one simple but significant difference in the team tactics on Sunday between Mayo and Cork. Cork stopped the Mayo counter attacks with a cynical early foul in their own half of the field, slowed the game down and set up their defence. If we had done the same we would have won the match regardless of having 4/5 well off form players because for a start we would not have conceded the penalty. Next Sunday against Galway this will be a significant factor as well because Galway use this tactic, as well as faking injuries, much more than Cork do I agree with your comments “to win just once”. I implore all Mayo fans to forget about our uncharacteristic performance last Sunday and go to Salthill and support the team to a great win over Joyce and the anti-Mayo brigade. What a magnificent boost that would be going into a QF in Croke Park where I believe we will be good enough to beat any of the four qualified opponents. Don’t desert the team now and if you haven’t being attending recently this is the match to come back for and give your support now when the team need it most. Remember the team are fully committed amateurs and play to the best of their ability in every game. Like us all they will have in-form and off-form days but never intentionally play badly. Come out next Sunday with colour and optimism because you can definitely make a difference to the result.
    Maigh Eo Abu ???

  24. ”TO WIN JUST ONCE” and ”THE ISLANDER” I think you are both spot on in your thinking.

  25. @leantimes think the ref is sean Hurson ..

    Agree we have no time for mental scars need to go straight on for it . I think the guys also have seen there fair share of mental scars and have come back from it numerous times and they will be fuming at themselves over cork .

    Agree think crowd will play a massive part on sun we need to bring as much noise and colour as possible we are well capable of beating Galway.

  26. @Clare..Sean Hurson.I think he’s one of the better Refs. Connor Louftus our No6 is getting a fair bit of stick on the Blog .At what he does he’s one of the best we have available, basically he’s our Patient Play Maker, Ciaran Kilkenny but for a deeper position. Connor is obviously playing on instructions, this system developed has been practiced since McStay took over. It’s late June now, the All Ireland final will be over by late July. I think it’s too late to abandon the System now. But of course we need to tweek a few things and hopefully we have a surprise. We know what Galway will do I think.Who will Galway play in Goal, Power or Gleeson we probably need to plan for both.

  27. @leantimes he’s def one of the better refs for sure the times we had him v galway he didn’t put up with galways fouling at all and is a very fair ref…

  28. Hope it is Sean Hurson. He doesn’t do us favours but he doesn’t black guard us either unlike some others.
    Whether this game is our last or the start of a run we should be treating each knockout round as the big one and turn up to support the lads even if it is in fecking Salthill.
    It’s vital that we address the the glaring avenues through the heart of defence that have been exposed time after time this year. We need to be savvy in closing down space but I think we should always leave a couple of men inside. Allow them a lot of short kick outs and engage around halfway as the full press for long periods is energy sapping. Don’t be afraid to let ball into the inside men and put Galway on the back foot.
    We are league champions for a reason and we’re still in this one too.

  29. Hurson is one of the better refs around so no issues there. You barely notice him which is a good sign of a ref

  30. The change in tenor of Mayo supporters is noteable this past 2 years ie post 2021.
    It strikes me we have turning into ”The Fucking Animals” that Paudie spoke about years ago (in admiration of his fellow Kerry men”.
    I talk to some close to their camp down there very often and they are ruthless with their own in a way that we dont understand I often think.
    However they know football in a way that few do elsewhere.
    I think we are moving closer to that type of support……..I dont think its a bad thing

  31. @FreeTheEastBank, not so sure that’s what Paudi meant, it wasn’t out of admiration. I think Paudi apologized for his description of ‘some’ Kerry fan’s. Even though there was some truth in what Paudi said.I was in the Hogan Stand in 2003 for the Tyrone Kerry game, the one Pat Spillane described as ‘Puke Football ‘.. Straight after Kerry we’re well beaten by a ravenous Tyrone, A blind sighted Paudi shipped a nasty punch to the side of the jaw by one disgruntled Kerry fan, not a nice thing to see. I think his comments describing the Kerry fan’s as “animals”sealed his fate as Kerry manager. Still an all, Paudi was one the great legend’s and character’s of the game the likes of which we don’t really see nowadays.

  32. But he’s barely doing any playmaking Leantimes. Very lateral, safe passes. Doesn’t break the line, Doesn’t shoot. Doesn’t tackle at all. Loses ball and gets turned over. No zip whatsoever in his play. Tell me if I’m saying things that are untrue.

    We’re allowed to critique management decisions when it’s glaringly obvious. I think we all agree now that Conor’s not a defender and we’re not seeing enough from him besides. McStay seems strangely loyal to him.

  33. Contrast that to someone like Callinan who absolutely relishes executing a clean, crunching tackle or simply standing up an opponent. And is someone who gives us tons going forward. Hession is another in the same bracket.

  34. Plenty of width in Pearse Stadium. Will suit both teams who play overlapping half backs, they will find the space they need
    The only problem, you can get a tricky cross wind, hopefully that will not be an issue.
    Look forward to the podcast

  35. Are we being a bit harsh on McStay and selectors:
    They dropped Hennely for Reape, worked well.
    Persisted with Fionn Mc Donnagh at half forward,a great work horse,why change last Sunday
    Used Durcan as a sub until last Sunday,either carrying an injury or not in form at present.
    Used Loftus at CHB, worked great against Kerry but I think it was a systems failure against Cork with no McDonagh or Callinan to ferociously attack the breaking ball.
    Should have changed Aido with our CHF when midfield was not functioning,we would still have the option of a high ball in.

  36. Is there plenty of wind and rain promised for Sunday? It’ll be chaotic..might suit Mayo. Could be a few lads hanging up boots if they lose.

  37. I’m happy enough with Hutson as Ref he will be fair, and one of the better ones out there. Better than the Clown in Limerick on a Sunday. I said it to my wife at the game on
    Sunday before it started that this ref will not be good. That was after reading the games he had previously reffed . Division 3 and 4 games and that is where he should be left. He was not up to speed with it at all. Two very high challenges on Ryan early on, and a frontal challenge on Ryan that did not even get a free. Cork definitely pint pointed him as a danger. He got no protection from Ref at all. This is not to mention the punch to the head on Jack.The ref was only 3 yards from this. A yellow card was a joke for this. But the GAA will do nothing about this re retro ban on Maguire. In fact they will more than likely appoint this Clown to ref another game this weekend .This was actually an assault. No
    Excuse for this type of carry on . Straight Red Card.

  38. To win just once
    Good post. I think one line of yours sums it up where you say, maybe just maybe we’re not as good as we think we are.
    I think some need to go back and look our team sheets from 3 to 10 years ago. How many playing last weekend would make those teams. We overachieved big time in 2021 in a format that probably suited us, but even looking at that team some glaring holes have been left by departures and retirements. All positions have been filled by decent players but inexperienced players. You can’t buy experience, it has to be earned. No county, including dublin, kerry, tyrone jump from have one great team to a completely new great team. It takes time and patience. Unfortunately we live in a world of instant gratification. We want it all and we want it now.

  39. If anyone wants to get a lift of spirit for Sunday listen to Boyler on the podcast .tog him ffs tog him , is all that goes through your mind listening to him , he is the spiritual god of Mayo football , a warrior in every fibre of his mind and body (when playing).

  40. If we dont fix our defence for next day with a proper chb then there is a good chance Sean Kelly will score a few goals straight through the middle with nobody to lay a hand on him

  41. @chick79 totally agree with you straight red card all day actually couldn’t believe the cork player had the nerve to do that and it was assault very thuggish tbh. Even the commentators both said he’s lucky to be still on the pitch and should have been a straight straight card and the ref made a bad call with the yellow.

  42. I just went into Ticketmaster account now and mayo Galway tickets are available to buy in seaosn ticket
    They go on general sale at 10am so might be a good idea to buy them now

  43. Km79 – Did you buy it through your Season ticket ? Im still waiting on a link we usually get sent

  44. Interesting story Leantimes.
    Worst I seen in CP was Dublin getting spat at by their own Fans!! in 2004 after losing to Westmeath.
    I do know that Kerry fans are very ruthless with their own though ie players .
    They call it very quick as they see it.
    Nothing and no one is bigger than the jersey…..
    I think Mayo are more like that now than ever before

  45. Have to agree with Maurice Brosnans thesis on the ahref pod.

    Basically this whole game hinges on the availability of Sean Kelly for me, he is absolutely irreplaceable for Galway and a lot of their gameplan hinges on him. Would leave a very green light fb line if he isn’t there

    I would base my prediction entirely on his availability. If Kelly starts galway win, if he doesn’t mayo win

  46. Season ticket email has landed. I’m with you, Km79, about the hoops they put you through just to complete the ticket purchase. It’s beyond me how Ticketmaster functions at all and manages to sell thousands of tickets for all sorts of events as it doesn’t appear to be fit for purpose at all.

  47. I wonder if its Mayo or is it Galway thats the most sore about letting a winning position slip last Sunday?. Around 4 PM next Sunday it will the team that loses and 6 months of the year to think about it.

  48. Chick79 and Clare, re the rough treatment and manhandling of Ryan versus Cork, did the same not happen against Joyce’s Galway in the League Final, or am I wrong on that?
    It happened against another team recently and it’s to intimidate and single out Ryan and put him off his game, dry up the scores for Mayo.
    I can’t get it out of my head that Joyce was sure Mayo would only be relying on frees to get scores in the League Final, i.e. wouldn’t be able to score themselves.

    (On another note, wouldn’t it be super if our long range shooters caught fire?
    And I agree – seal up the defence when it counts).

  49. Gotta back up what Revellino says – we need to use the 3 speedsters to break the lines – Enda, Eoghan and Tommy. Actually Paddy is fleet of foot also – he almost got through on Sunday – on that small margin he becomes a target – what nonsense – 1st man on teamsheet whenever he’s fit.

  50. Ended up with an extra ticket.
    Have a stand ticket available if anybody want’s it? Let me know and we can swap details.

  51. I have ended up with an extra ticket.
    Have a stand ticket available if anybody want’s it? Let me know and we can swap details.

  52. Looked at some of the stats for the Cork game and also giving some of my own opinions
    – All 6 backs marauded up field throughout the game
    – Defensively sound until 55 mins
    – Subbed 3 backs for 3 more attacking backs
    – System / structure seemed to fall apart then and Sherlock played havoc
    – Conor Loftus (who’ll soon be marmite on here) had the highest number of possessions and longest time on the ball in the game, you can make pros and cons on this I suppose but the lad was on a huge amount of ball. I would allocate 2 mistakes on him (turned over once and could have fouled earlier for a free instead of the penalty IMO). We had 7 other players that made more that 2 obvious mistakes each in the game just for overall context. Plunkett if fit would be my preference but I wouldnt be over critical of Conor. The last 15mins was a systems failure same for Louth.
    – The amount of recyclying we did up to 60mins was over the top. There were 7/8 shots that should have been taken. Even if they were 50/50 you’d have saved the time from re-cycling to go again. There has be be a better balance here.
    – For Galway you will not see that level of marauding up the field. I believe the lessons to learn for this game are from the league final i.e. eliminate the goal chances (Kelly was behind a lot of the good work they did that day so if he plays then we need a very good plan for him – Paddy D, Callinan).
    – I said it yesterday complacency maybe a factor in the Cork performance to so I do expect a very different animal come Sunday. Remember also Cork ran Kerry close so they are no mugs
    – We should have a strong panel available and I’m certainly going to keep the faith. I’d expect 3 of TC, E.Mc. EH, SC to start the next day.
    – Would like to see Jordan in midfield / rotate with Mattie
    Look no further than one game at a time with Mayo ! really looking forward to this one…

  53. @swaollow hopes yes it did happen to Ryan v galway guess they always target the best players but the ref wasn’t having any of it from Galway and did give us the frees for it even though some Galway ones say they were soft frees haha

  54. I’ve no doubt Paddy will hit top form again, he seems to be a little down in confidence at the moment, possibly due to still getting over recent injury but as captian and a leader of this team I’d have full confidence in him starting on Sunday and doing a good job on whoever he’s tasked with.

  55. I see there is no reserved seating on sunday in the stand. i would urge every MAYO man woman and child to get to pearse stadium early and we can turn the stand in pearse stadium into a sea of RED AND GREEN. we need to turn out in big numbers to shout and roar the team. I firmly believe the supporters can be the difference on sunday. We need to roar and support the team from the first minute of the game until the final whistle.We can all enjoy a few pints in Wards hotel, Killorans pub or in the Salthill after the job is done and MAYO are victorous.

  56. Hi Pacar,

    Yes sure. Do you want to give me your email or phone number and I will send on details.
    Or if Willie Joe wants to give you my E-Mail then that’s ok too

  57. * If anyone have spare stand tickets please let me know..have disabled supporter & cant get stand ticket.

    Saw team coming out onto bus after game, Padraig O Hora very lame, right thigh with heavy bandaging on.

    We need Cillians cuteness & leadership desperately

  58. I have it from a very reliable source that Kelly is out for a month.
    Hope I am not breaking any rules vas it doesn’t concern vour own team.
    Source also stared that Galway were sure Comer and McHugh would start up to late on Sunday morning

  59. I desisted from calling last week’s ref a clown as one poster did because they’re also amateurs giving their time but would have to say he was poor. He gave no time at all to players going into contact to release the ball when several of these contacts involved a hop or solo immediately before it while in contact. In Padriac O Horas case he was textbook following of the rules and he still got penalised. In real time I didn’t see the strike on Jack but the ref was 3 yards away and in playback you can even see on the Cork full back’s face it was a totally malicious act (miles late) in frustration Jack beat him to the ball. If the ref was doing his job properly, we’d have been 3 or 4 up on Cork by half time despite no fireworks but we weren’t doing badly either. At least 2 of the hard bangs on Ryan were frees and he missed several pushes in the back too which should have been frees in. Only coming up to half time did cork run into Mayo traffic and concede some similar frees as theirs was a counterattacking game. Going forward to next year the GAA has to do something about this puke football. Basketball found a way to ensure a positive spectacle for their game. We’ll lose thousands of fans across the Country if they don’t remedy this. The hurling is getting all the neutrals.

  60. @Swallow swoops
    If Galway keep giving away fouls then we will knock frees over all day long. It doesn’t matter how we score them.
    PJ’S comments after the final made him look a bit daft.
    I have respect for Galway but we shouldn’t fear them. The pressure is on Galway who have been talked up by so many.
    Mcstay should be watching that league final again twice a day every day this week.
    We can learn plenty from it if we’re cute. McBrien on Comer, Callinan on Walsh, Coen did a good job on Tierney so same again.
    We need to assign somebody to Cooke and most importantly stop runners coming through which was the problem on league final day and it still the same now. Its ironic that for a team like ourselves who were so reliant on the running game for so long that we appear now to be vulnerable from it.
    James Carr has been quiet for a few games and Galway know all about him. Never a better time for him to come good. 1-01 the last day for Tommy will have done him the world of good and with Cillian hopefully back in the mix then we can hopefully get past them.
    Cillian and Tommy off the bench in a tight game might just swing it for us.

  61. Jr – looking at Kelly limp off the last day I couldnt see him play next week but miracles do happen. He would be a huge loss for Galway their best player IMO, makes everything tick and can seem to turn up and drift in out of nowehere for scores

  62. How we try to limit Sean Kelly’s influence on the game will go a long way to disrupting Galway’s gameplan if we are successful at it .

  63. I like those thoughts and your positivity, Mind the House.
    I also think we have a fighting chance on Sunday.
    It was just the idea that PJ or anyone else could lock us down that rankled me. That attempt by anyone just irks me with the arrogance of it.
    (He was thinking, I’d say, that our scoring wasn’t in our own hands; frees might or might not come – you might be waiting for them, and you’d be restricted to points, no goals). Pah!!!
    I think it’d be great if McStay was watching the League Final on repeat this week!
    Up Mayo!

  64. Unclear whether the doctor note for Comer and McHugh was to allow others into the 26 or allow others to play, WJ said it was the former. We need of course to plan for Comer starting as he’s a handful and McBrien is the only one for that job, plan B if anything goes wrong E.g injury but he can’t blow past him with pure power in the way he does to other backs around the Country. Restrict to 2 or 3 points is a good day on him. Likewise Walsh is an incredible talent regardless of current form who needs watching. I can live with half forwards and McDaid picking off a few scores so long as not too many of them do it on the same day.
    Losing Kelly which I’m very confident will happen is almost as bad as Kerry losing Clifford, won the penalty and scored a goal the last day. Would prefer Galway to have all their players available for the spectacle but don’t think it will happen.
    Ps Galway management (back room) is particularly shoddy in allowing that embarrassment to happen and we’re also extremely slow getting Kelly off the field and O Curainn on at a crucial time in the match. They wouldn’t inspire confidence. Ye’d never see James Horan doing that and our current team seems professional too. Their back room also risked extending Kelly’s recovery time leaving him on while unable to walk. Someone above said a month, I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s true.

  65. Funny how last two games we were 5 and 6 points up coming near end of game, around same time brought on our so called better half back players who were supposed to run the opposation team into the ground with our fresh legs, what happened on both days, collapsed and lose one game and very nearly lost the other if there was another minute to play it was lost also. So much for best team on at end of game. Do like Kerry and Dublin pick your best team in their right positions for start of game and then make changes during game if needed. After FBD and national league and a few championship games Mayo still dont have a settled team for most positions

  66. Kelly might play but there is no way in hell his ankle will allow him go forward as frequent as he does. He isn’t exactly the best full back from a defending perspective so it will be a major headache for Joyce this week on how he deal`s with the mayo full forward line.

    Comer will play and even at 60% he needs watching, Galway are a different team when he is on the pitch.

    The game will be won on who gets the upper hand in the middle 3rd.

  67. Just to defend the ref the Jack Carney incident in real time looks like a yellow.
    The replay is in slow motion and is an obvious red. He gave yellows for some challenges, but could have gave more.
    He missed the rule that Jack Coyne and Paddy Durcan were allows touch the ball on the ground having fallen and lost possession. But, most refs miss that one and most people don’t know that rule.. but Jack Coyne looked to be pointing it out.
    He should however have issued a black on the next heavy deliberate rough play on Ryan.
    He also or his linesman missed a black card knocking over of Ryan when a free awarded out.
    So, not the worst I’ve seen, the major blot was not to coordinate with his linesman on the targeting of Ryan. He did let it be allow the outsider get stuck in mode. N refs can tend to do that.
    I didn’t mind his holding on calls. It improved the game. There’s too many players taking the ball into contact and barging forward wuth no solo or hanging on beyond the time for four steps.

  68. Regarding Paddy Durcan’s form, people are flaky.. if he scored 2 of those 3 chances which he made all by himself would he be in contention for our MOM. He got 1 similar chance he made himself coming on against Louth and took it brilliantly. First name on the team sheet when fit IMO. There’s no substitute for his experience. I believe he was given a full 70 the last day to blow the cobwebs from injury and he’ll be a big asset vs Galway.

  69. Its all ifs buts and maybes but when you think we were 5 up against Louth and 6 up against Cork late in those games.
    Shawl or no shawl we had done the heavy lifting. The job was as good as done.
    Its pretty remarkable even by our standards that we have contrived to end up having to turn out on Sunday.
    There is no point looking back though otherwise we might get hit by something because we weren’t looking where we were going and that could end up being fatal.

    I expect us to charge out of the gate with steam coming out of our noses come 3pm on Sunday.

  70. Culmore – that was the point I was trying to make we subbed 3 backs and replaced them with 3 attacking backs. Is it as simple as to many changes in the one area created a system malfunction i.e. all 6 backs needed time to adjust and re-settle because of the changes. I think this was out issue rather pointing at any one player. In championship you rarely see extensive changes in the backs in a game unless injury or form. Normally its none, 1 or maybe 2 at most

  71. Kelly is playing Sunday unless something unfortunate happens from now till Sunday , get that idea out of your heads that he’s not lining out cause he most certainly is . They have been nursing comer with a qf in mind but again all reports is he is moving just grand for Sunday . We need to hammer home our own strengths on Sunday and at some point we need to take risk , not wild shots but definitely more shots . And for the love of god hoof it in on top of the square from time to time , as Boyler pointed out it gives them something else to think about . If we get a crack at goal from one hoofed ball it puts them at two minds what are mayo going to arrack us with then they put emphasis on o Shea and lord and behold you have a better chance of breaking a line or two out the field to create a point scoring opportunity

  72. @JR yeah sure look at mattie got a red for pretty much the same kind of incident n 21except wasn’t towards the back of the head not kind of play is not on bad form from the cork player straight red all day .

  73. JP if you watch the game back you will see Mayo players either hopped or soloed immediately before contact or while in contact breaking out of the tacklers and in most cases had not used up more than the allowed 4 steps. For the most part they were not static so for steps rule applies. Also in 2nd half Padraic O Hora used the text book, dropped the ball as soon as he was surrounded, got to his feet despite lads on his back, lifted it clearly with his foot and offloaded within about 1 second and he still gave a free. The refs are meant to know the rules on this, it’s not rocket science. Next weekend it’s Hurson who’s one of the top refs around. Don’t expect perfection from any ref but his appointment helps make the game a spectacle as fans will not be getting frustrated as much and can focus on their respective teams. Like everyone our big loss of momentum after the Cork penalty was of concern but they wouldn’t be close if the ref had done his job for all of the previous 55 mins. He does not understand the rules on contact or didn’t implement properly despite knowing them and did not protect a Mayo player being targeted as well as not giving frees in for blatant pushes in the back to Aido and Ryan resulting in turnovers to Cork.

  74. What the Thedarkyfinn says I agree – 3 attacking backs coming on as subs left us as porous as the US-Mexican border. CL got on the ball but…. confidence shot?

  75. Never mind Kelly, Comer, McHugh etc. They’ll either play or they won’t.

    If we aren’t good enough to beat them with their full deck, then we are going nowhere anyways.
    McBrien well able for Comer.
    McHugh, no offence, but I don’t particularly rate him.
    And Kelly is a fine player but if someone sticks to him like shit to a blanket then his influence can be curbed.

  76. Probably all mentioned already but our subs are premeditated and backfired badly against Cork.
    Management shouldn’t be afraid of making only one or maybe two subs if necessary.

    I don’t think Loftus will be dropped so what about starting him in the 6 jersey and slotting Coen in at half back and have Loftus link up with the midfielders. That would solve him being exposed like he was for the penalty against Cork.

    We need lads standing up for each other. The amount of times the Cork backs belted O’Donoghue and nobody coming in to back him up. Not saying they should belt them back and get cards but we need to get back to that mentality. Again, another reason for Cillian to come in as he takes no sh!t from anyone.
    We’ll give Galway a rattle, no doubt. Need to lay down a marker early though. It’s an old format Connacht final. Win or bust.

  77. @Thedarkyfinn

    That’s a good point, and it seems to indicate a flaw in our approach. We are bringing in attacking pacey defenders to close out games where we’re building a lead.

    We’re not going to win an all Ireland if we’re relying on Donnacha McHugh and Padraig O’Hora to break lines

  78. Pretty sure I said this after the Galway league game in February but immediately after we score a goal Aidan O’Shea needs to drop back and defend our goal.

    Would have prevented Tierney’s goal that night, and probably both Louth and Cork’s

  79. I agree Loftus is not a CHB but this is only half the problem. Ruane is consistently not tracking his man back as well as others. Loftus has 2 to 3 players running at him. We are wide open when teams run at us. Set up. Is wrong but also is there a fitness issue as seem to be folding towards end of matches.

  80. Been thinking a fair bit about why we are struggling so much with the blanket defences. One thing I noticed on Sunday is that while we have lads that can cover acres of ground, we are actually very short on explosive pace. Ruane, Flynn, Carney, DOC, Loftus, McHugh, Coen etc can all run all day but they don’t have that pace over 5 yards to beat a man.

    We have too much of the same player in the team and its hurting us. Need to start Conroy, Hession and McLoughlin the next day.

  81. I have admiration for those putting a positive spin on Sunday’s game. I, unfortunately am always pessimistic. It’s from the years of hurt and digs… I’d defend our lads to anyone. But that’s getting harder and harder. 2021 I actually gave up. I stopped watching football. I’d tune out of conversations, I didn’t even watch the final last year.
    But this year I saw shoots. New faces, new energy, new tactics. Bench making a difference when coming on, all good…
    But then patterns emerged.
    In 21 we expected to win playing how we played all year and we expected Tyrone to play the same as they had… They didn’t but they knew we would. We were figured out, and that has happened again.
    This isnt all doom and gloom now, but I’m very confused as how people after seeing our last 2 games think we will beat a team people had as favourites for the all Ireland last week…
    Galway are going to bring absolute fire on Sunday. Comer, Conroy etc will be chomping b4 the whistle. Our younger lads will face an intensity they haven’t seen before, especially the backs. The Galway support are unsure of their current style but will be happy to keep winning so the opening quatre is huge in terms of momentum . Aido, Jordan, Ryan, doc will be targeted for a reaction, so a strong ref and discipline from us is paramount.
    They will swarm aido like Roscommon did so he cannot carry the ball into the tackle or it’ll be a free out. Every one of those will give Galway oxygen.
    This brings me to an element which seems to have left our game. The off load. We were experts at it. Where are the runners? They are out on the 40 waiting to play hot potato. Paul flynn said it during the Louth game about importance of the man on the shoulder. I really thought we’d see a bit of an improvement last Sunday.
    I think both teams have shot themselves in the foot here,. Kicking lumps out of eachother next Sunday only to have a fresh team a week later. Thought we should have rejected the notion of playing Sunday. Nothing to do with us that they are hurling on Saturday just like it was nothing to do with PJ when he shot down the notion of us getting an extra day recovery after league final. We lack a ruthless streak.
    We will need that Sunday. We need that in the camp. Winners mentality.
    Sorry for long rambling. Just a bit lost in it all tbh.
    I’ll be there Sunday. Let’s all be there Sunday. Let’s show people we keep going and hopefully that drives the lads to do the same…

  82. Sean Burke, spot on about Boyler on the pod, when he talked about Harte I was riled up! Imagine him in the dressing room.

    On the subs the last day, I think it’s hard pin them, or as a change in structure on those changes as resulting in the failures we had, Hession for Coyne was a straight swap, McLaughlin came on for Coen, Coen was playing wing forward, and McLoughlin didn’t come on until very late in the game and we were already a point down. After conceding the goal, it was deer in the headlight type stuff from us. We needed to be smarter in seeing out the game. That should have started by slowing down the cork restart, stand in front of the keeper, pull back a few defenders, get up their faces – it’s not pretty and not the spirit of the game but it’s the cuteness needed to win – anything to waste time and get set in defence.

    The second part is if the other team manages to get out, foul them out the pitch and get bodies back. Six points up we should have a double sweeper in place.

  83. Erris head there shouldn’t be any need for lads coming in to cause a ruckus when a player is getting hit, These are meant to be the top refs. Maybe in a club game when refs aren’t as good. The 2 linesmen are also refs in intercounty. The next day it’s Hurson and hopefully better linesmen too who will intervene sooner if necessary. In any event, Cork were probably just right on the line with hard hits but not quite over it and Ryan is well able to look after himself, has no fear of anyone and was not put off his game despite the tough treatment. I did also see other Mayo players alerting the officials quite forcibly so there’s only so far you can go. Inter county players expect hard hits. There are far too many eyes around the place for the kinda stuff attributed to Meath in the late 80s / early 90s. Those lads simply wouldn’t get away with the same stuff now (whether it’s true or a myth that Meath were the hardest around, there was certainly plenty of myth around them).

  84. Unstoppable……..we are not struggling with blanket defence or ……massed defence more than any other team.
    We are struggling in our own defence and holding a lead / closing out games.
    We are also struggling in midfield

  85. I think, who available for Galway and Mayo, will have a big bearing on match. Be expecting Cillian to at least make bench, and I think should have been on bench last weekend, but that nor here nor there. If Galway missing Sean Kelly and Comer, I would expect to win. Kelly, in my mind similar to Lee Keegan, keeps his man scoreless and pops up field to score a goal or couple of points. Hate to say it, but really good player. Comer playing well for Galway, so direct, hard to mark, powerfull, and goes for it. In League final, he could have had 2-3 scored, so who do you put on him. For us, were is Sam Callian at, were is Cillian at, where Brendan Harrison (although the latter be doing well to get on after such a long injury). A week ago we where told Cillian nearly there, then no sign for match, plays for club against Ballinrobe and scores 2-6. We need Cillain know how around these matches, experienced know were post are, and will take responsiblity, when it arises. Shane Walsh dangerous, and could spark into life, but on current form not playing well. That not saying, that he wont go on a scoring spree next weekend.

  86. That’s a great post at the top of the thread by @to win just once.

    Look,there was no excuse for what happened in limerick but its how we react to it that’s important for now.
    If some supporters are too upset or mentally scarred then maybe don’t go to the game or don’t watch it on telly.

  87. The management wanted to win Connacht this year but the scheduling so soon after the league final put paid to that.

    This is our second chance now and the most important chance to come out as the kingpins in Connacht.

    Neither team has the advantage of an extra week’s rest in the lead up to Sunday. We do have the learnings though of how we might rest up and prepare better after our experience of playing the rossies a week after the league final.

    Galway haven’t blown any team away this year and they sure as hell are not going to blow mayo away come the weekend.

    I think we have a great chance on Sunday. Time for the management team now to earn their crust. A win on Sunday is totally in our own hands and I think we’ll do it.

  88. Sam Callinan is not the man marker for Comer, McBrien is our best option for danger men. Handled him and other dangerous FF’s fairly well so far all year. Callinan is still too young and inexperienced, a very good player good at executing tackles. In any even Comer is a handful and limiting him to a few points is a decent day’s work. It’s more of a team job. Clifford did damage to Mayo sometimes when other Mayo players got in the way of McBrien, in one on 1s he didn’t get past him. With Clifford he’s so good that he can kick points high like hurlers and has a big range, stop him getting past for goal chances more important. 2 goals does more psychological damage than 6 points.

  89. Mayo had Cork beaten when they went 6 up, but then it was like the Mayo team thought oh we have this game won & several players eased off completely, shocking stuff. I was at the game & clearly Cork bullied Mayo big time, where is the tigerish, tough play we associate with Mayo in the last ten years. Cork went at Mayo with pace & cut through them so easily on several occasions & scored at ease, no pressure on the runners, no closing down, it was like they were heavy legged or low on energy, I said at half time that Cork would win & boy did they blow Mayo away, very worrying to see pitch opening up for Cork.

  90. Freetheeastbank
    Couldn’t agree more. We’ve put ourselves 5 and 6 points up in our last two games against blanket defenses. We just don’t seem to have the ability to close out. Whether it’s inexperience, lack of leadership or not wanting to go down the cynical killing the game route, I don’t know.
    I think bringing on speedy half backs when you’ve a lead like that is the right thing to do, but only if you’ve realised its time to lay out your own blanket, suck in the team that needs to score and hit them on the break.

  91. Very well said ‘To win just once’ and ‘Islander’Good solid reasonable common sense analysis of our current position .
    We can do it on Sunday
    Mayo Abu

  92. No issue with who was brought on. It’s a team collective and some of those players were being requested to start, almost begged by some. We’ve a huge panel, I stand by that. We took off inexperienced players. I think simply move on, don’t let it happen again. Dublin a few years back were masters of managing setbacks. We should learn from them.

  93. Yes Shuffly Deck, we are down not Out. If this had happened at a later point it would be fatal. Almost every team in the Championship has showed some weakness and lack of consistency. Tyrone for one will not be licking their wounds after West Meath should have ended their championship. Hopefully a blessing in disguise. I was always impressed with Rochy pulling something out of the bag in the 2017 run. Time to unleash Hell or die trying.

  94. Our job : to be in attendance

    Bring noise and colour

    Encourage all around ya to make the trip

    I know I know , I harp on about this stuff but I always say what harm can it do to come out of your comfort zone . Do something for the cause , if ya never carry a flag , do it this time . If you don’t usually get involved in the mayo roar , do so . Play your part , this is our county , then bucks that put that jersey over their head on Sunday are out on that pitch for you be on the terraces for them . Maigheo Abu and to hell with Galway .

  95. @Sean Burke – Couldn’t agree more with your last post. Kelly and Comer will be starting, 100%. Sure I heard from a great source Oisin Mullin was seen in Supervalu ballinrobe yesterday evening…..wearing a training top….

    Seiriously, it will be a full strength Galway, we know how they will play, what can we do to win? I agree also on the long ball to Aiden. Gleeson is a calamity waiting to happen with high ball. Surely one long ball is worth 2-3 minutes of arsing back and over with no one (apart from Jordan) having the balls to take a shot.

    My blood has risen again and I swear im pumped for this one like nothing before, bringing all the kids and ready to roar for 70minutes. Do i think we’ll win – no! Will it stop me supporting the team no. Lets just tear into then and on the off chance we nick a win, how sweet would it be…..f**k them.

  96. Some people are fixated on the CB position but I believe we have had a bigger problem at Midfield all year with the exception of the Donegal game and Kerry in the championship. If you are cleaned in midfield it automatically puts extra pressure on the half back line. Our CB is a very good kick passer and that is the plan for the year. Hopefully we get a better return from Midfield next Sunday.

  97. @ Margie , good to hear Oisin is back!! Can someone give Leeroy a txt and see is he doing anything Sunday at 3.
    Tell him have the boots just in case :-))

  98. Jesus @Margie, if only the players can get some of your energy / drive / motivation etc for the Galway match I think we will blow them away.

    I say let the players go and do their own thing, don’t be in fear of playing to a system, really test Galway.
    Galway not as good when facing a full team.

  99. @FreetheEastBank

    We scored 10 points against Roscommon, 14 points against Louth and 1-11 (14) against Cork.

    Dublin and Kerry scored 5-21 and 5-24 against Louth.

    I agree we have major issues at midfield and at closing out games, but our ability to break down a packed defence is awful. The Dubs and Kerry don’t have the same issues with these defences that we do, and that’s why they’ll be in the conversation in July and we won’t.

  100. Unstoppable, I think it’s the long range shooters that makes the difference. If we practised precision shooting in training and then decided to use it outside the blanket like Jordan risked on Sunday, we could bank a few scores. They wouldn’t be pinning us down so much. (We haven’t been using that though, preferring to win by one, two or a few points at the final whistle, play cautiously and not interfere with our DNA of power and pace.)

    Then when we are a good few points up, they have to come out to play, leaving gaps. We need to do our own blanket then as Ahnow said earlier and hit them on the counter.
    I really don’t mean to be mean but many of these blanket teams just rely on that strategy. Once you make an inroad like above, a team like Mayo or Dublin can rack up a big score. Look what we did in an open game in Kerry.
    Dublin and Louth were close for a good while but Dublin pulled a bit away, and then just ruled the roost. I know it was a more open game anyway. Kerry would have used their long range precision shooters to score over the blanket. Once they had the advantage, and Louth were on the back foot, a big score can get racked up. That’s what happened also in the AIF 2018 when Dublin broke through the Tyrone blanket.
    If we could score reliably from distance, it would be a feather in our caps against these teams. I wonder could Colm Reape do a spell in the forwards us…

  101. Our game management let us down against Armagh, Roscommon in the league and our last 2 championship games. We get in front by managing the mass defence and taking scores but then let it slip in last 10 mins.
    Awful shlobberin’, hi.

  102. @unstoppable…we could go entire championship and not score 5 goals. Never mind doing it in 1 game.

    Kelly will play for Galway. Yes, he limped off in Carrick but he sat in the stand for the remainder of the game with a bag of ice. Token stuff. If G were really concerned he’d have been down to the dressing room with team doctor. Comer will definitely play too.

    Mayo have the players to win. Whether they play well enough is the major question. Form suggests they may not. Hope, hopes they will.

  103. Agree with Erris Head completely in relation to the clattering our lads got at the weekend. O’Donoghue and Carney shipped a couple of very heavy belts, but none of our lads responded. Boyler also referenced it in the pod.

    I’m not suggesting we go in risking red cards in retaliation, but sometimes you’ve got to back your mates. Make the ref take a second look, or make sure he’s watching out for the next infraction.

    We looked very callow and naive in our lack of reaction.

  104. Swallow swoops I think that’s what Paddy Durcan was trying to do. Scores plenty but misses a good few too so it’s great when it works and has potential to frustrate when a few wides clock up but he has the balls to go for it. I think there’s no 1 strategy for the blanket, a mixture of approaches. With Dublin it was three attackers passing around a triangle patiently until either a gap comes or rinse and repeat on the opposite wing. For Kerry the last day they overloaded the forwards with extra numbers and backed themselves to score more than concede which once a few goals went in became a rout. They conceded a few goal chances early on. Regarding our long range shooters Jack Carney has shown good shooting as has James Carr. Conor Loftus has it in his armoury but seems to be more tentative than in the past, perhaps affected by all the critics here if he bothers to read which I’d hope he doesn’t. Tommy Conroy isn’t one of those type of shooters, everything is done at pace with him so near the goals or straight in from for him to score. Cillian definitely is and could be a very useful addition. Mattie Ruane also gets a very good return from distance and Diarmaid over the years kicked some good ones but burning up so much energy covering the pitch that opportunity doesn’t arise very often now . Jason Doherty kicked a beaut against Louth but unlikely to start ahead of Fionn McDonagh a guy who on his debut season kicked many a fine score but not as prolific now. In the backs we have fewer long range shooters than before with Leroy departed and Oisin too. One of our subs Bob Tuohy looks a good shooter but unlikely to play and Darren McHale is a good striker especially from a central position but again unlikely to feature and can get squeezed in by the pace of a very high tempo championship game. Kevin Mc has bailed us out many a day but can we expect much more of that from him with the years clocking up?

  105. There will be no prisoners taken in the Galway game, we take the best out of each information is Kelly out for a month.

  106. Love that post, Shuffly Deck. Very informative. That’s fascinating about the Kerry approach to Louth. I didn’t see the game.
    Paddy definitely has the guts to shoot. I love that. You mentioned Carney and I’ve seen him show gumption too.
    Fingers crossed we are our confident best on Sunday, and if not exactly that, that we have that grizzly spirit shown in Margie’s post above.

  107. For closing out games I think this needs to be talked about alright between management and players. Have it in our minds to be ruthless. Bring in Boyler to talk to the lads. He’d have plenty to say on giving 100% right to the final whistle. With hindsight might have been better to replace Ruane and maybe even Diarmaid than 3 backs with Jack Carney and Jordan going to midfield and some of those backs coming on for forwards allowing us to pack the defence.

  108. All good positive blogs here, Mayo are definitely the best supporters in the country. I heard the great support last Sunday in limerick, calling Mayo Mayo, but the question I have to ask is : why does the Mayo team seem to fade in the last quarter? Why can’t they set up their own defensive blanket to close out the game, why or rather why not??

  109. Closing out games can be corrected, if that is our only problem on Sunday I for one will be a happy man
    Galway have more problems, went from hero to zero in one game, afraid to go for it.

  110. It doesn’t really matter who is in or out. Galway v Mayo games take on a life of their own. It will be a tight game. I’ve been at a few Galway games this year and when you analyse it and break it down there is not a massive amount between the squads. I actually think Mayo have more match winners in their side if they perform on the day.
    Shadow boxing part of the championship is over now. They both have to put their best forward on Sunday because it’s last chance saloon. If Mayo can get up to the Kerry game level and Galway are missing a couple of key players I fancy Mayo to win by a couple of points. But they will have to take the game to Galway from the throw in fast pace and keep foot to the pedal for 75 minutes.

  111. I think we are all a bit fed up at this point, as it there is no point in busting to beat Galway with more games following every week nearly.
    If Mayo get through v Galway then it will be 3 weeks of games in succession, it is an uphill battle now.
    We see where it takes us.

  112. Exactly. They couldn’t manage two matches in a row earlier in the season. Not a hope of 3. I’d say half of them are dreaming about another summer in America at this stage. Let’s hope they learn how to pace themselves next year, and not be burnt out before the knockout starts.

  113. it is difficult to analyse what happened the last day against Cork. It is hard to fathom how we were so bad in the last quarter. Six points up and we loose by three. Was it the changes made by Cork? Was it the changes we made? Was it fitness? But all of these questions are for management. The problem is do management have any answers to these questions. Some of the bloggers on here are asking the right questions and providing suggestions that have merit. The old adages hold true even in the modern game. You must have a strong backbone. Full back, centre half back, midfield, centre half forward and full forward have to be big, strong and run all day. we probably have a big problem at centre field, centre half back and center half forward. Management have a big decision to make regarding these positions. Diarmuid and Jordan at centrefield. Mattie at centre half back and Conor at centre half forward. Not saying that this is the best configuration but we need to mix things up. By all accounts Kelly and Comer will play the next day. But we can only control what we do. Somebody must go with Kelly on his forays up the field. It won’t be Aidan. I am hoping Mcstay takes control and makes the right decisions. One thing is for sure we need to have the courage to take the occasinal long shots from outfield. This is a test for management next weekend. Its shit or get off the pot.

  114. Jesus there seems to have been alot of traffic on here today.just wondering how some posters are so sure that Sean Kelly will be fit for Sunday.the fact that he sat in the stand for the remainder of game wouldn’t mean alot considering he was bizarrely allowed to hop around the field for several minutes when he couldn’t possibly participate in the game

  115. That’s not quite correct Batetheblanket. We have three (possible) weeks of games now, including last Sunday’s.

    Given how we performed having a two week gap, I think that argument (which I made myself a lot, earlier on) is now irrelevant.

    Next ball – it’s Galway, it couldn’t be a better draw for us, bring it on!

  116. All or nothing on Sunday. We wii need to be firing on all cylinders to win and, if we do go down, I want to see us go down fighting. It will be attritional and probably close, a typical local derby. Galway are well organized in defence and will be smart with their usual tactical fouling and three-quarter fouling, which they hope the ref. will let them away with, which, unfortunately, most of them seem to do. We are a bit naive in this respect and are too pure-I don’t like like this stuff, but most teams seem to get away with it and we need to get smart and use these tactics too-if we had we would have beaten Cork. Never mind the rumours, we must plan for a full strength Galway. No matter what anyone says, we do have a bigger problem with blanket defences than say Dublin and Kerry, as evidenced by the way both stuffed Louth. Our problem is we don’t score enough to give us a comfortable cushion, leaving us vulnerable to these late comebacks like Cork and Louth. It surely is evident to almost everybody that we have a huge hole thro’ the middle of our defence and, if we don’t fix it, we will be dead and buried on Sunday-in case anyone has forgotten, we coughed up four clear goal chances in the league final and were baled out by Reape and poor finishing. If we concede that many chances on Sunday, we are toast. CHB Is’nt the only problem as there is a lack of a proper structure, people not tracking back and half-hearted tackles(we cannot afford any of them.), leaving our defence exposed. No criticism of Conor, but he is a square peg in a round hole. As someone already pointed out, he doesn’t contribute enough in attack to compensate for his defensive frailties-he is simply not a defender. We need to put a dedicated defender at 6,who is aggressive, can tackle, stand up his man. If fit, I would try Plunkett, otherwise I think Sam has the required attributes or else Coen, who has plenty of experience there. We also need to employ a sweeper to further shore up the middle. We simply must make it as hard for Galway to get scores, especially goals, as they will undoubtedly make it for us. The result will depend on the weather, injury situation, how it is reffed etc and by which team performs best. I did’nt see the interview with Rochford about “Psychology, but if any of our players need the help of psychology to motive them when they pull on the green and red jersey, especially against our great rivals Galway, then maybe they should consider a different pastime. Let’s get stuck into them.

  117. Id be shocked if sean Kelly plays on sun looked like a bad injury even if he does play he’s not gonna be 100% is he..time to forget about the cork game and learn from. It and get behind the guys and bring as much noise and colour as I said possible were well able to beat them best draw I think we could have gotten just because Galway make us up our game and we always do against them ! If we’re good enough to beat them if not so be it ..but I’ve faith we can ! Ha.

  118. Can we just clear one thing up Sean Kelly is lining out Sunday and that’s a fact unless something happens him between now and Sunday .

  119. Fully agree Sean. It looked more like a knock, ie a kick to the ankle, and not a strain or a tear. He’ll play.

  120. Gaa people (inc mise ) can fall into a trap about missing players too , before Sundays encounter between the fancy dans and Armagh , everyone was saying “whatever chance they had they haven’t a prayer now without Rian o Neill “. The rest is history , history lessons are very important though .

  121. Absolutely agree. We want no excuses from either side. Idle speculation. Without doubt one of the best central defenders in the country. He’d make a wonderful CHB too. Hopefully only a knock, a bucket of ice and a few hours rest

  122. As long as it’s Galway we’re playing that’s enough to get me riled up.
    Galway v Mayo always ups the battle to a different level because it’s a great healthy rivalry going back a long time. This is the real deal, it’s Championship football now, no backdoor or qualifying rounds, no more of that shine, knockout football at it’s best. No hiding anymore, put your very best team out, good tight hard marking defenders, no f#####g about like last Sunday,
    Midfielders have to win 50% of ball,
    Forwards have to start shooting sooner, stop that shite of going over & back on the opposing 45m line area & keep probing + going at them with quick ball, hopefully they will go in hard & no quater given, can’t wait.

  123. @sean Burke yeah very true. Sure as I said if we’re not good enough to beat Galway with the likes of Sean Kelly no point going on ha

  124. There sure is a lot of speculation going around about one particular player at the moment. Is he playing or is he not playing. It will be known later tonight if this player will be in or out for Sunday. Not 100% confirmed either way yet.

  125. @shufflydeck re player management do you remember the way Coyne was being flogged in FBD and Sigerson was it 3 games in 9 days or something mad. And Conroy not taken off for HIA the last day after seeing marks on side of his head

  126. Is the stand reserve seating on Sunday. My ticket seems to have a section and a number

  127. Of course S.Kelly & Comer will be good to play on Sunday…sure didn’t Pat Spillane kick 8 points from play in a mom performance back in the ’86 final with his leg in a sling…a hardy animal is the g.a.a man.

  128. It will be interesting to see how the events of last Sunday will affect both teams.Both sides will be furious that they let slip a great to be sitting prity now in the quarter finals and the last thing either side wanted was a battle royal against the old enemy with almost certain injuries and a quarter final coming the following Sunday.For us the calamitous nature of the defeat has highlighted glaring issues which have evident for a while and has now put pressure on the management.For Galway they were playing down the clock before attempting to get a shot away as time was up but they got caught with a misplaced pass .Galway will still believe their system works and won’t change whatsoever.I don’t Kevin mcstay will change anything majorly either because basically if it wasn’t obvious before it won’t be now either .interesting that some think it’s rochford that’s calling the shots and mcstay is simply the is noticeable that Liam McHale appears to have no input during games now.I think we still have a good chance to win the game but both sides have now shot themselves in the foot with the route they now have to take

  129. Hope Comer and Kelly start. Best 15 v best 15. Hoping they have injuries is unsportmanslike.

  130. @SATRIANI ah now don’t think anyone is hoping any player is injured that’s terrible I always se loads go hoping no injuries either side . Sean kelly is some player though. I hope he does play we need to prove we can beat the best ( depends what mayo team shows up though ha )

  131. I see in Hamden Park the Scotland, Serbia game is going ahead as of now after about 50 minutes or an hour suspension due to a waterlogged pitch after some torrential rain , with Scotland leading 1-0 after only 8 minutes played. I wouldnt be surprised if the game was called off altogether depending the rain. , With the GAA matches going ahead this weekend I wonder have the GAA any plans in case of such torrential rain . Last few days around Mayo I seen fields flooded that I never seen flooded even in Winter, I also seen some very torrential rain yesterday it would be impossible to play any game were such an event to happen during a game, Such an event would play hell with the congested callender. After a full month of dry hot weather we were due the thunder and lightning and rain. Hopefully by the weekend it will have rained itself out.

  132. @leantimes not a chance that they have any plans in case of waterlogged pitches…
    Didn’t they make mayo and Galway u21s play in an orange storm warning in McHale Park a few years ago….!

  133. PM, what you see on your stand ticket ( im guessing) is the number of the turnstiles for the Stand, 47- 62 , At least thats the only numbers on my stand ticket.
    I’m near sure its unreserved seating, but i could be wrong

  134. It is unreserved seating and all mayo supporters should get there early and turn the stand into a sea of red and green and roar like hell when the mayo team take the field and wave them green and red flags. Supporters must cheer every score blockdown and good move by the mayo team .We need to out roar AND OUT CHANT the galway supporters . lets make it happen MAYO SUPPORTERS. UP MAYO

  135. Sunday has sll the feel on Limerick a few years ago..
    Galway came into that after a defeat and with injury issues all over and were beaten by a fired up Mayo..
    Comer came on that day carrying his leg!
    Will be the same the next day with the same result….
    Our injuries will be our undoing….

  136. If we have Kelly and Comer fit I make this a 50-50 game.
    If either are out I don’t give us much of a chance.
    I don’t have any inside info but it doesn’t look good for either of them

  137. Jeez @Galwayman haha but faur point:p haha Galway & mayo totally blew it .

    @Tuanstar qh sure Galway are favourites for the game….

    It depends what mayo team turns up sun I really belive it will be the mayo team we all know that they can reach ro in a knock out game v galway I have confidence our guys will show up and be fuming after cork game.

    Buy you can say its 50/50 prob is but who will turn up the question Galway had 5 goal chances against us in league final comer looked fuming he didn’t get one or two in reaoe is a key asset us to us on Sunday if you ask me and cilliam o Connor & Tokmny c and Ryan o d…

    How many times will gray foul Ryan o d sun? Hmm

  138. @tuamstar and @galwayman.i hear ye regarding injuries but all I know is we got no sympathy and were told its not an excuse when we had up to 14 of the panel injured at one point including star players so now i guess right back at ye.

  139. We’re a gas bunch. All this talk about our athleticism and fitness. Then we get run ragged towards the end of the Louth and Cork games. We’re hot and we’re cold. I don’t know who Mayo is and I’m fed up of jeckyl and hyde teams turning up. They’re either up to it or not and I’m not convinced they even believe that they are.
    We have some mental torture in us and we are all caught up in it.
    I don’t know what to expect from Mayo but it’s a while now since I’ve been excited by them. They have some angst or fear and it’s a hard watch.
    Kerry game apart they’re not a team playing with self belief.
    They were within a few minutes of a two week break and sure 3 weeks on the trot might be too much. We’ve made our own jeopardy where none existed. How very Mayo.
    We’re a yo yo team and I’m not holding my breath… even if we manage to beat Galway.
    Mayo who are you!

  140. Ok so a Mayo man saying comer and Kelly are definitely playing and a Galway man saying they are probably out.Clare if the mayo team that we know from 3 of the last 4 games turn up we will lose.I was horrified on Sunday but getting a bit more optimistic now .surely some form of sense has to prevail

  141. @1985 I mean the mayo team we all know of the one that can beat any team in their day is what I meant…yes we were awful in the end on Sunday but I think everyone knows what I mean by what mayo team will show up.

  142. Lots of chatter myself included but no idea who will or wont play of aTuesday evening. Mayo looked gassed at end of Louth and Cork matches which must be a worry for ye. Galway wont change the plan, I find it hard to watch but its my county but wish we were more direct. Perhaps Sunday we will at least see more shots taken on. Its not a great position for either team to be in but we can only blame ourselves. Hope its not windy as Salthill is a hard place on a windy day. I also hope Finnerty starts he is very good in Pearse. Fair wait now til hurling Saturday and onto Pearse on Sunday.

  143. How would we feel abt this team for Sunday
    1 reape
    2 Coyne
    3 mcbrien
    4 swaney
    5 paddy
    6 Eoghan
    7 Sam Callinan
    8 carney
    9 Diarmaid
    10. Hession ( sweeper)
    11 Tommy Conroy
    12 Jordan
    13 aido
    14 Cillian
    15 Ryan

  144. @chesneychet cork knew to play the blanket against us after louth but then again we had the lead in both and blew it so who knows …

    It’ll be some atmosphere in Galway cone Sunday though may the best team win.( even if it is Galway in end:p haha )

  145. 10 years ago we had the best team in the country and blew everyone away all the way to the final.Disastrous decisions on the sideline cost us that final.since then we have had the most extraordinary ups and downs.euphoria followed by complete despair .I would agree with mo direachs’s all getting very mentally draining.this hoping that we will magically produce a big performance out of the blue is great for the rest of the country watching on at the crazy drama we produce but soul destroying for those of us who have been watching this unfold since the 1985 draw with Dublin.I have no idea why I think Mayo might win on Sunday.logic doesn’t really come into it with us

  146. I’ve added an ‘O’ to your handle there John (O), to avoid confusion with another contributor. Alternatively, you could try using a different handle (providing it’s an original one).

  147. I don’t think we were gassed in the last 2 games, I think we lost concentration. One Cork sub proved a handful but we made him look better than he is by giving him a kickout and penalty and an acre of space a few times. One of those points he had plenty of heat on him from O Hora and the other ones he had space. It’s a case of if we get a lead near the end park the bus and use our pace on the run to kill teams off. But parking the bus is no good unless hard (fair) tackles and pressure put on the player with the ball. Use extra forwards defending to help execute this plan.
    Aido could be moved to midfield some of the time the next day to compete with Conroy who has been doing well in the air but doesn’t have the pace to get past people. Horses for courses. Most of Conroy’s scores are lined up by team mates albeit he’s a very good long range shooter.
    We have loads of good subs and should use them again the next day. Galway have Finnerty who’s good and for some reason won’t play Culhane so not much point him being there if not getting games. Sweeney won’t frighten any FB line and Burke not tacking on scores like his previous incarnation. When Finnerty does come on or if starting (if they had any sense they’d drop Burke to the bench) he’ll take watching much like Cork’s Sherlock. Maybe put a fresh sub on him as man marker. Burke is there to help “the system” but I don’t get it, Finnerty is significantly more potent.
    Galway are also naïve letting Walsh take left footed frees when Tierney was very good from range a few years back and naturally left footed.

  148. Spot on shuffly deck..concentration is obviously an issue. Dare I say it when we go 5 or 6 up in closing stages we get seduced by the scoreboard and get punished.

  149. 1985 I wouldn’t say disastrous decisions in 2013 cost us, there was one forward taken off early Alan Freeman who was going very well and scoring but who reputedly had a flu, not sure why he started but got a good return off him. Apart from that an unlucky injury to Tom Cunniffe meant we pulled Keith Higgins back to defence and he had been causing Dublin all sorts of problems in the HF line but we had no one of Keith’s quality to sub on on CB. I’d have some question marks about the positioning of subs Mickey Conroy and Enda Varley that day but most of the reasons Dublin won were
    1) a mix up between Goalie and Full Back for Brogan’s goal bringing them back into the game
    2) the best piece of goalkeeping kickouts up to that point in history by Cluxton in the 2nd half. They figured they couldn’t beat the O Sheas often enough in the air so instead ran the legs off them by kicking out towards the sidelines and knowing where the ball was going in advance and McCauley and O Sullivan won a load of ball. It was 23 degrees and massive energy had already been expended by Mayo in the 1st half when they should never have conceded that goal against the run of play from a speculative ball in to a player not renowned in the air.
    Dublin were far more dominant in the 2nd half and it took a goal from Andy to get us back in the race. Cillian was injured in the Tyrone game (some think maliciously) and was on the pitch mostly for frees which he took expertly but was not at his peak level.

  150. Shuffy deck I was in the davin stand that day as Keith Higgins was left marking o gara who couldn’t walk and Higgins was signaling to bench to alert them to this fact .his pace around the middle would have been vital due to Cluxtons kickouts but the management seemed oblivious to it .also cooper was concussed so Dublin effectively played the last ten minutes with 13 men .the decision to take freeman off was ludicrous as he doing fine and was occupying the Dublin corner backs .as soon as freeman went off McMahon and cooper started to go forward

  151. Mo direach one of the reasons for our inconsistency is that there are a lot of new lads on the team. Younger and less experienced players tend to blow hot and cold. More worrying is the fact that a number of our more experienced players are blowing more cold than hot at the moment

  152. @1985 and Shuffly Deck, ye know yet stuff about football, I agree with most of what ye say.
    We just are not adaptable under pressure in a final.

  153. @No doubt – not trying to get the excuses in early at all.
    Just stating a simple fact that we won’t win without those two.
    I go to pretty much every Galway game and we are not the same team without Damo.
    Nothing sticks inside when he isn’t there.
    Maybe they’ll make miraculous recoveries but as of now four days out from the game their chances of featuring don’t look good.
    I think this is where we fall down as a team – unlike a lot of other top teams we are heavily reliant on a few individuals (these two plus Daly and Shane).

  154. I’d love to see Mayo line up as per the below

    1 Reape (goalkeeper),
    2 Jack Coyne (man-marker)
    3. David McBrien, (man-marker)
    4. Enda Hession (sweeper),
    5. Sam Callinan (transition Player)
    6 Padraig O Hora (Marking Centre Back)
    7. E McLoughlin (transition Player)
    8. Stephen Coen (dropping Midfielder)
    9. Matthew Ruane (attacking Midfielder)
    10. Jordan Flynn (Wide forward)
    11. Jack Carney (spare midfielder)
    12. Conor Loftus (Linkman)
    13. A O Shea (target man)
    14. Cillian O Connor (specialist shooter).
    15. Ryan O Donoghue (specialist shooter)

    I would then plan to bring in
    Diarmuid O Connor, Tommy Conroy, Paddy Durcan, Fionn McDonagh and Donnacha McHugh between 40 and 60 minutes.
    Anytime we lose a game, we generally have only made two or three subs before the 70 min and end up running out of legs

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