As mentioned earlier in the comments, the fixtures for the 2013 National Football League were announced earlier on today and we’re set to open our league campaign in early February with a tasty home match against Kerry. This will be Eamon Fitzmaurice’s first real competitive outing as Kerry bainisteoir so there’ll no doubt be a fair bit of media attention on him going into this match and our lads are sure to be well focused themselves on making a positive start to the year too so we could be in for a cracking opener to the 2013 NFL campaign.
The good news in relation to the upcoming league season is that four out of our seven matches are at home (it’s rare enough that the match scheduling ogre accords us this privilege) but the not-so-good aspect is how the self-same ogre has put together the fixtures. In an ideal world, the fixtures should alternate between home and away matches but our list provides for two home ones (Kerry and then Tyrone), followed by two away ones (Dublin and Down), then another two home ones (Kildare and Donegal) with an away trip (to Cork) bringing up the rear. That looks a bit daft to me.
As Mayo Mick pointed out in the comments a bit earlier, the Dublin, Down and Kildare matches are all scheduled for Saturdays and so, one assumes, will be held under lights. Of this three, only the Kildare one will take place at McHale Park which means that this is likely to be the only home fixture out of the four that we’ll be playing under lights. If that is the case (and I know these things depend on TV rights and all that) then it’s probably a missed opportunity, given the larger attendance that usually turns up to nighttime matches.
The fixtures haven’t apparently been signed off yet by the CCCC so they are, in theory at least, still subject to change. Going on past experience, however, I’d say you’re safe to be pencilling them into your iPad now.
The full list is as follows:
Round 1 (3/2/2013): Mayo v Kerry
Round 2 (10/2/2013): Mayo v Tyrone
Round 3 (2/3/2013): Dublin v Mayo
Round 4 (9/3/2013): Down v Mayo
Round 5 (16/3/2013): Mayo v Kildare
Round 6 (24/3/2013): Mayo v Donegal
Round 7 (7/4/2013): Cork v Mayo.