It’s Kerry in Killarney next for us

Today’s two dreadful provincial deciders answered a few questions and offered a few hints about how the summer might pan out.

From our perspective, the main point of clarification was that Kerry’s facile Munster SFC final win over Clare confirms their place as the top-seeded team in Group 1. This means our opening match in the new All-Ireland group stage will be against them at Fitzgerald Stadium in Killarney on the weekend of 20th/21st of this month.

It hasn’t been confirmed yet whether this fixture will take place on the Saturday or the Sunday. There’s nothing, though, now standing in the way of firming up the date and time of the game, which hopefully will happen soon so everyone can get their arrangements sorted.

Kerry had it all too easy against Clare at the Gaelic Grounds today, a match that was over as a contest well before half-time. The main talking point was, understandably, the fact that the Clifford brothers decided to line out for the Kingdom the day after their mother had passed away.

David and Paudie proceeded to honour her memory in fine style, both of them putting in powerful performances. It was a truly astonishing feat to witness and fair play to them for it. They have some tough days and weeks ahead of them now but today will, one senses, fortify them for what lies ahead. Deepest condolences to them both and to the entire Clifford family on their enormous loss.

Over in Castlebar, meanwhile, another mismatch unfolded as Galway steamrolled Sligo to capture their 44th Connacht SFC title. That puts them level once more with us in the provincial roll of honour and it’s also the first time they’ve recorded back-to-back Nestor Cup successes since 2003.

Galway now head into what’s set to be a tricky group, featuring as it will both the defeated Ulster finalists and Tyrone. They look well equipped for the challenge, however, and there’s little doubt but that the Tribesmen are seriously in the hunt for the big one once again this year.

Having been sitting on the sidelines for so long, it’s hard to know how we measure up when compared to the two counties who collected silverware today. In the case of Kerry, however, we don’t have long to find out, with all roads now leading to Killarney for us in a fortnight’s time.

53 thoughts on “It’s Kerry in Killarney next for us

  1. It doesn’t really matter how awkward a group is now. Chances are you’ll only need to beat one team to get out of the group. This new system is a joke. Provinces are a joke. Really hard to get excited about the championship this year!

  2. @Tommy+Joe totally agree finding it a bit hard to be getting excited about it with the new format that and that we have had a break though to haha

  3. People will get fed up with this format very quickly i think.there are just too many games to be played and this lunacy of having the draw online on a Tuesday afternoon.why isn’t this done live on the Sunday game in a transparent thing we will have the draw taking place in the middle of the night just in case anyone might find out about it

  4. It is what it is, they had plenty of time off to work on things, Mayo should only be dying to get a game whatever the opposition.
    I would prefer if Mayo top the group.

  5. A whipping on the way with that defence. Then we’ll scrape through the final 2 matches.

  6. In fairness, the league, were all close games, and easily could have won alot of them. From all accounts Ger Cafferkey, great trainer, so seem to be a great addition to Michael Moyles backroom team. So hopefully the draw for group stages kind, to Mayo Ladies.

  7. Hello, all Mayo posters, Connaught posters, and the very few of us Kerry folk up here in Mighty Mayo.
    I was at the Munster Final today in Limerick, a venue that does not get enough games in hurling especially. A fine provincial ground. I’ve been saying it for years, Croke Park and Thurles get way too many games. I make no apologies for saying that, and I would say it out publicly with a megaphone to all the suits up in Croke Park and beyond.

    Only 12,450+ at the match today, the lowest attendance for a Munster Final since Clare v Cork at the same venue back in 2012. The sad demise of our provincial championship with Leinster. Ulster and Connaught are now the main torch carriers for them. The upholders of standards left. I feel they must be kept, just evolved, he developing counties take them very seriously, so they do have a role in some format, they should never be dustbined, Never dismissed, nor upset tradition, ever. We just need to think of a way of continuing them, but differently. Look at what happened with the brilliant Railway Cup Competitions, should have never been let go, no thanks partly to John Prenty of the Connaught Council, yes, they were poorly attended, but the players loved them, great for the developing county players playing alongside the counties that won a lot of competitions.

    At the match today, in all my years going to both hurling and football matches, it was the most austere, surreal atmosphere I’ve ever witnessed, tinged with sadness. I was both shocked and happy at the same time, David and Paudie, they obviously got the all clear to play, and sought their solace amongst their band of brothers. The two boys are men amongst leaders and are amazing, they did their Mum so proud, Ellen RIP no doubt was looking down upon them, and they family so proud of them. No acceptance speech made by David on the cup presentation, no need to. That silence spoke volumes in great value.

    The match today was over after 8 minutes sadly. I agree with you Mayo posters that it is hard to excited to about this year’s championship, the way the game is played, look at yesterday’s U20 matches, it was terrible. The second game was better. Kerry were horrendous. I hope Sligo go onto win it now. They won deservedly yesterday.

    I want to wish all of the Mayo fans safe travelling due south next Saturday week to Killarney. Safe Driving and safe health. Treasure the good times, as we all found out this weekend about the perspective of life, we all have only one Mammy, life is bigger than football and sport.
    God Bless.

  8. Tommy+Joe it’s important to top the group and avoid the knock out play off game a week before the All Ireland Quarter finals.

  9. Sad to hear about the Clifford mother passing. Sure she was proud of her son, like most mothers are proud of their sons. While I thought Kerry, would find it hard to retain all ireland, as you need to come back hungrier and more determined. I think this Kerry team will row behind the Clifford, and do it for them.

  10. @David we are certainly not in for a whipping we should have hession ,callinan James Carr back for the game as I keep saying it really does matter who a division 1 team are playing.

    It makes them look better then they are if they are playing an awful division 2 , 3 or 4 team you can’t tell where kerry are at.

    Clare were a disaster yesterday and everyone said they would be even saw one newspaper article after the draw was made saying kerry to host mayo in killarney in 2 weeks and that was before the kerry / clare game was even played! It said its expected kerry will hammer clare and they did just that .

    See some kerry people saying we always flatter to deceive nonsense statement we are one of the top teams in the country for a reason but guess kerry always see us as a team who fail to deliver on the big day .

    I wouldn’t go writing us off just yet kerry probably thinking they will hammer us but I fully expect us to show up with a bounce and to rattle some feathers in killarney ha!

  11. Condolences to the Clifford brothers on the passing of their Mum. Beannacht De lena hanamh dilis.
    Must say I was surprised to see them play yesterday considering a junior Kerry team would have beaten Clare yesterday!! Both provincial finals were dead rubber matches for sure.
    A big challenge for our boys and we need to bring our A game !
    Mhuigeo Abu!

  12. Very hard to get excited about football yesterday.

    You only have 1 mam and to lose her so young it’s beyond words.

    We are immensely proud of Paidi and David and yesterday showed the character of the lads.

    Delighted to be hosting Mayo in Killarney because the colour and craic you bring will be very welcome indeed.

  13. One can look outside of standard of opposition at how a team is playing on the football skills side and scoring execution and defensive solidity.
    Both of Kerry and Galway are going well.
    There is the eye test, it is a thing.
    Also one can look at the strength and depth of the 15/21 and the form this season of each player.
    Derry are also going really well.
    Those three have no doubts for me.

  14. What makes Clifford great , for me it’s the speed he gets his boot to an accurate shot . It’s truly amazing how quick it is and then the accuracy and power to go along with that .

    Is there anything to be said for the old fashioned defending style of stick to his boot . I know it sounds simplistic in a complex world of tactical nous . Who would be our quickest defender to get down on a block but he’d also have to be strong and physically able .

  15. @JP yes but I’m still sticking by my opinion that you can’t tell where a team is at until they get a real test clare were no test at all!

    Agree with @Oilean Acla a kerry b or even C team would have hammered that clare team yesterday ! Still don’t think kerry will win back to backs.

    And @David what do you mean scrape through louth & cork ?? Jaysus if we only scrape by those 2 teams we may as well head home !

    And condolences to the Clifford’s that took courage to go out and play after their poor mum left them way to soon they are top class players and gentlemen.

  16. Hurling down for the Sunday I’m told so TV will dictate these games are played on sat , is that correct ?

  17. Kerry won the all Ireland last year and aside from the loss of David Moran they look like they are ready to go again.I am sure they stood by frothing at the mouth watching Dublin win their 6 in a row and they won’t be letting go of Sam very easily.Galway reached last year’s final and appear to have improved their strength in depth.following on from our 2012 final defeat Mayo storming through the Connacht championship .none of those games were a contest but it was obvious where we were at .that year was a huge missed opportunity as we totally misfired in the final but it’s obvious despite the opposition that Galway and Kerry are the main contenders.Dublin despite the return of the cavalry haven’t shown anything yet to suggest they are possible winners .Mayo won the league and showed promising signs but we have a very inexperienced set of backs and we have no idea what the injury situation is as we head into the lions den .i heard Tadgh Morley reference the hammering Kerry took in castlebar on the Sunday game last night

  18. @Sean Burke – The GAA website now has it down for the Saturday but no time available as of yet.

    There is 2 big games in the Munster hurling at 2pm and 4pm the Sunday so it wont clash with them times.

    If it is on the Saturday will it likely be shown on GAAGO ?

    If so it amazes me how every year the GAA find a new way of making a ball`s of things. There is already enough negativity around the round robin series with 28 games to eliminate 4 teams and now the fact that people will be likely be asked to pay €12 per game in the middle of a cost of living crisis it will suck the life out of what could be a great weekend of football.

  19. @1985 true that kerry won’t want to let go of sam after watching dubs win 6 I’m a row but you could say that about any county watching Dublin win 6 in a row we were all sick of it.

    Galway still not convinced by them Shane walsh is no where near his best from last year and that was shown when PJ took him off after 5 min in 2nd half and he’s meant to be their best forward and they are meant to be contenders? Dont buy it but sure time will tell I guess wide open this year ha.

  20. Mayo v kerry and Galway v Tyrone on gaago. I know it’s not for everyone but 12 euro is not bad for access to view the game considering attending would cost at least 10 times that. It’s times like this I’m glad I subscribed in December. have really nailed your colours to the mast and fair play. Stick to your guns

  21. @No doubt – It is €12 on top of needing wifi (€40 per month) and connection to your TV (€160 per year) to watch it.

    The point is there is many of the older generation and many who cant afford it who will miss out on getting to see these games which is not acceptable in my opinion in the middle of a cost of living crisis.

  22. @No doubt ah Ok i don’t mind paying 12 euro for it when as you said it costs more to attend games !

    Thanks ha always believe in sticking to your guns haha

    Looking forward to the game glad its kerry instead of clare we are facing gives us a real test which we need same for kerry they need a good test be some game !

  23. @jkel88. Regarding the €160 i think that’s a cost even for free to air so that can’t be considered part of the gaago charge as for your other points i hear you.

  24. Interested to know people’s view on where football is at in general. I’ll be honest I’m finding it hard to watch.
    I don’t like when pundits go on about hurling v football. We should embrace both, both for context, I watched Cork Tipp on Saturday. It was brilliant. Over 50 scores. Now, the defending was very lose but in contrast, football is gone to the other extreme. It’s very defensive.
    I saw a bit of kerry v sligo. Kerry when turned over, turned their backs and ran back to defensive structure…… That’s the trend…. I know these things come and go but at the moment I find it very hard to defend football.
    Yesterday’s games were more open I’m assuming. I didn’t watch them to be honest, where as before I wouldn’t miss many… but they were probably more open due to sligo and clare maybe not being as far on in defensive set ups…
    Is it all gone a bit too serious?? Maybe this is a conversation for winter, I dunno

  25. My heart went out to the two Cliffords yesterday, you can be sure their mother had told them to go out and play no matter what, and represent her as much as Kerry, fair play to them both.

    Our game with the Kingdom is the ultimate free hit. No need to risk any player unless their 100% fit. We get a trial run at playing a system that curtails their attacking game, and get much needed minutes into players that need games. I got a feeling O’Hora will start this one, we need a bit of steel in that fb line, Padraig, McBrien and Hession would represent a whole new fb line from Roscommon game.

    If people are realistic, they will understand that the two most important games in this group are Louth and Cork, their massive. Their the games we need to be at full pitch for. You have to pick your battles,and Kerry in Killarney is not one of them. Get in and out injury free, avoid a hammering, and i’ll be happy.

    If McStay can’t get us out of this group he should be immediately relieved of his duties. As time has gone on, the resemblence between his first season with Roscommon and us is striking. We looked burnt out against the rossies. He has a habit for going all out in league campaigns (for what I don’t know), lets hope the break has recharged the lads.

  26. Margie – No need to be so critical on the new management. You are basing your assumption of one game which was played in storm like conditions, the squad won a division 1 league title the weekend before playing Roscommon.

  27. Both hurling and football have their issues at the moment in my opinion

    With athleticism and risk-averse play the order of the day in football, hurling has now become a shoot-out with players easily scoring well within their own halves, and any free within 100 yards – and not out on the sideline – is now a virtual tap over for most inter county free-takers of the elite counties. Goals have become more redundant as time has gone on, they can be cancelled out in little over a minute with a couple of quick-fire points

    Fair enough some love the high-scoring nature but I much prefer when scores are much harder earned and every one of them feels important

    On the complete opposite end of the spectrum shooting seems to be completely coached out of some players in modern day football. The days of the enigmatic, mercurial forward who will shoot on site and play off the cuff – playing all his football within the opposition 45 – looks to be dying out at inter-county level. Nowadays they all need to be part of a “process” or “system”. It has probably come to the stage where a forward is judged in team reviews by having X possessions and kilometers covered, as opposed to scores/shot attempts

  28. @Margie thats pretty harsh now to be fair mcstay & co have brought this team back to life since we limped out of the quarters last year.

    1 bad game and management is in question? We can’t win them all haha.

  29. @Clare @JKEL88
    I’m not trying to be critical of managment, i’m merely stating that IF and its a massive if, we finished 4th, then we cannot possibly expect to retain the manager, no matter if its Jim Gavin, Jim McGuinness or Pep Guardiola. I don’t expect us to lose to Louth and Cork, but its not impossible if we aren’t fully tuned in or are “burnt out”, that stems from the managment of any team. I

    This and my previous post are of course hypothetical, but the reference to Kevin’s first stint as Roscommon manager is their to be seen. A massive emphasis was put into the league with both squads. Im hopeful that the 5/6 week break was enough to recharge the batteries, and according to Lee Keegan it should be.

    We might not like to admit it, but being fitter than most teams we played in the league ensured we could play an attractive style of football. The fitness edge will now be gone, gaps that were there in February and March will not be present now in the top teams. Of course we know this, so it will be intetesting how the next few weeks play out. Horan made us a consistent last 4 team, hopefully we can continue the trend.

  30. @Margie we still played some decent attractive football from the league and that was not just down to being fitter then most other teams. We have always been an entertaining team.

    Regards to management dropping out if we don’t get passed the group stages no way would that happen mcstay & co have signed a 4 year contract !

    Yes mcstay got the Rossies flaring for league as he did us but his heart lies within mayo born & bred man from ballina he’s not going to walk out on the guys if we don’t get passed the group stages !

    Jim mcguinness would never manage mayo the Dubs would never forgive him haha

    YescI agree with you on that point 5/6 weeks will have done the guys great I heard they are bouncing to get back and over the rossies match disappointment!

  31. Jim gavin I meant would never manage mayo haha probably not Jim mcguiness either ha.

  32. One game at a time. There’s only one thing on McStays mind at the moment. How to beat Kerry in Killarney. The vulnerabilities of the team have been well exposed in league games. Defensively weak at 6 and failure to create goal chances.
    We have 6 weeks to sort and refresh. It’s a big ask, but are we up there with the big boys?

  33. I’m still a bit dubiuos about this group phase i.e. do mgmt target the 3 games to top the group or target just 1 and qualify and use the wider squad in the untargeted games, then target the pre qtr. It probably all depends on the first game i suppose. The longer route may not be the worst I think I’m concluding as well (target 2 instead of 3 games). Whats the difference between finishing 2nd or 3rd – did someone say home advantage to the 2 seed ?

    At least the GAA got the time right for those travelling ..

  34. @clare I do admire your optimism and positivity. But for me it’s 3 bad games on the trot, regardless of whether the Monaghan game was a dead rubber or not. Galway lost that league final after a terrible opening 20 minutes for me they were the better team for the rest. We got most of our scores from soft frees, and 4? from play. Not even to mention the 4 or 5 Galway goal chances. Roscommon were watching that and knew they had our number for the week after

  35. The team and match ups i would like to see;

    C Reape

    J Coyne on T Brosnan
    D McBrien on D Clifford
    P O`Hora on P Geaney
    E Hession on P Clifford
    P Durcan on S O`Shea
    M Plunkett on D Moynihan

    J Carney on J Barry
    D O`Connor on D O`Connor

    E McLaughlin on G White
    M Ruane on T Morley
    J Flynn on G O Sullivan
    R O`Donaghue on T O`Sullivan
    A O`Shea on J Foley
    J Carr on D Casey

    5 Subs to use

    S Coen
    S Callinan
    C Loftus / B Tuohy
    T Conroy
    C O`Connor

  36. JKEEL88 Can’t leave Coen off the team IMO, a real leader in the backs and does a lot of work with little fuss.

  37. @Jr – I doubt Kevin and co will leave S Coen and C Loftus out of their starting team in 2 weeks, that is just who id like to see.

  38. We have to target a win over Kerry. How else do we find out how good we are or what our limitations are?
    It’s beyond belief that we would do anything else but field our strongest team and bench against.
    Are we looking for excuses for not winning? We’re either able to play with the big boys or not and Killarney will tell us.

  39. CT reporting three players on the treatment table, never know how to take the CT though . (Loftus ,paddy and jack coyne)

  40. CT are never that reliable for news I find paddy &Jack coyne would be a big loss for the game if true.

  41. Jack Coyne had a cast on last weekend on his arm/hand so his injury is accurate but the extent isnt known. The news on the previous injury list was positive at the weekend however E.Mclaughlin may still not be 100% is the understanding I got. There was no detail on Conor / Paddy provided

  42. @Gizmobobs haha well sure he lives there doesn’t he? he probably classes himself a bit rossie as well haha.

  43. Jesus Gizmobobs, you think there may be some sort of a Conspiracy theory going on somewhere?
    What happened to Ros in the replay v Mayo in 2017 ?
    I personally do not believe in hammering a team say in a knockout game in Croker, only if it’s a final, it takes too much out of a team to go flat out, always an eye on the next game, ie, pull in the reins a bit, no point in winning by 15 points when 4 is sufficient.
    Here are a few examples of this
    Mayo v Down in 2012, Mayo putting in too much of an effort in winning by a big margin.
    Ditto v Donegal in 2013.
    Ditto v Galway in 2013, 2014 and maybe 2015.
    Ditto Sligo maybe in 2014 or 2015.
    Ditto Ros in 2017
    Ditto Tipp in 2020.

    Just do enough to win, hold plenty in reserve.

  44. @Margie Westmeath and Louth will be beaten by Mayo by a bit to spare. They simply won’t have the fitness,conditioning,intensity and strength in depth that Mayo will have. Finishing top of this group can’t be underestimated so IMO need to pick up at least a draw on May 20th.

  45. @mayomagic Westmeath are in Galway’s group not ours. You’re thinking of Cork

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