Limerick 3-7 Mayo 5-19: fun in the sun

Our first match in the qualifiers in each of the last two years was far from a relaxed experience. In gloriously warm and sunny conditions this evening in the Gaelic Grounds, by contrast, it was nice and easy pretty much all of the way. Although it took us a while to get motoring properly, once we did we exposed pretty sharply the gulf in class between the two teams. In the end we hammered them out the gate.

We were on the road for Limerick early enough today – too early for some of our travelling party but, thankfully, teenagers don’t have veto rights on such matters in our house – and were parked up in the shopping centre close to the ground not long after four. We were so early that the turnstiles hadn’t opened and the large travelling support from the West was starting to build by the time they finally stirred themselves at the gate.

An hour ahead of throw-in a lusty cheer rose up over in the Mackey Stand. From our perch high up across the pitch at the back of the open stand it was hard to discern what this was about. Then the eagled-eyed young buck spotted Tom Parsons making his way, with the aid of what looked like one crutch, to his seat on midway. Top man, Tom.

A bit later word came over with Rob, who’d joined us on the far side, that we’d be making one change ahead of throw-in. James Durcan for Andy Moran was the hot rumour, a story that proved to be correct.

Limerick won the ball from the throw-in and they also struck the first blow in this contest. A foul in the big square is always a penalty and a penalty it was for the infraction by, I think, Keith Higgins. McSweeney’s spot kick was low and into the corner and David Clarke, for once, could do nothing to keep it out.

We responded well, however, to this early setback. Cillian O’Connor only needed two points to overtake Conor Mortimer as the county’s all-time highest scorer and he fired over two from play in short order to get us going. A free from the same player drew us level as gradually we began to turn the screw.

For too long in the first half, though, we seemed to be trying to land killer blows on them but our repeated attempts to run in goals yielded nothing but frustration. Adding to this frustration was the fact that we’d passed up a number of easy points in the process.

When the goal did come there was an air of good fortune to it. A wayward pass inside found an unintended target and when Evan Regan claimed possession he offloaded smartly to Cillian who smashed it home from close range.

The goal seemed to relax us. Two fine points from distance, the first from Chris Barrett and the second a cracking snapshot by Colm Boyle, pushed us further clear. A close-in free by Cillian O’Connor, after a foul on Evan Regan who’d collected a glorious low raking pass in from Aidan O’Shea, left us 1-10 to 1-1 up at the break.

The result was never in doubt from there. Limerick got the first score on the resumption but we got the next four, sucking further life out of the contest.

Aidan got the first one, bulling his way through before shooting over off his left. A Cillian free, a clever one from play from Evan and then a super score from Paddy, who collected the kickout and then finished the move at the other end, put us further clear.

A big cheer went up ten minutes after the restart when Lee Keegan joined the fray, replacing Colm Boyle. Jason Doherty came on for Kevin McLoughlin shortly afterwards.

Then we got caught napping at the back. Seamus O’Carroll was loitering inside, Keith wandered too far off him and a glorious fifty-yarder found the Limerick sub who rounded David Clarke and blasted to the net.

In retrospect, there was an element of poking the bear about that score. We responded by upping the tempo on them, aided by our use of the bench and, in particular, Andy Moran’s introduction. All of a sudden we were running riot at their end.

We blew them to bits over the final twenty minutes. The rout saw us run in three goals in succession, Cillian completing his hat-trick before Andy added two more. Andy and Cillian seemed determined to keep reprising that Kerry goal from last year’s All-Ireland semi-final replay, with the handpassing over and back before the ball got dispatched to the net.

We closed out our 5-19 account with a Paddy Durcan point but they had the last say. A pretty ludicrous penalty award – it was neither in the big square nor was it a foul – saw Limerick bookend their evening’s scoring with a second goal from the spot.

We won by eighteen at the finish and can be more than happy with the result. It wasn’t a perfect performance but it never was going to be and when we finally decided to throw them under the bus we didn’t exactly hold back in doing so. It was, by any fair measure, a productive evening’s work.

So we’re in the hat on Monday morning for Round 2. Another qualifier run is underway. We’ve no idea where we’re headed next or how we’ll do when we get there but we did okay, against extremely limited opposition, this evening. One hurdle over, the next one will be in view soon enough.

Mayo: David Clarke; Eoin O’Donoghue, Ger Cafferkey, Keith Higgins; Colm Boyle (0-1), Chris Barrett (0-1), Paddy Durcan (0-2); Seamus O’Shea, Stephen Coen (0-1); Kevin McLoughlin, Aidan O’Shea (0-2), Cian Hanley (0-1); Evan Regan (0-1), Cillian O’Connor (3-9, five frees and a ’45), James Durcan (0-1). Subs: Lee Keegan for Boyle, Jason Doherty for McLoughlin, Conor Loftus for Seamus O’Shea, Andy Moran (2-0) for Higgins, Caolan Crowe for Hanley, Shane Nally for O’Donoghue.

Audio report:

MOTM poll:

Who was our MOTM against Limerick? Pick your top three performers.

  • Cillian O'Connor (54%, 703 Votes)
  • Paddy Durcan (7%, 93 Votes)
  • James Durcan (5%, 68 Votes)
  • Aidan O'Shea (5%, 68 Votes)
  • Chris Barrett (5%, 62 Votes)
  • Cian Hanley (3%, 45 Votes)
  • Ger Cafferkey (3%, 44 Votes)
  • Andy Moran (3%, 36 Votes)
  • Eoin O'Donoghue (2%, 32 Votes)
  • Colm Boyle (2%, 28 Votes)
  • Keith Higgins (2%, 27 Votes)
  • Evan Regan (2%, 23 Votes)
  • Stephen Coen (1%, 14 Votes)
  • Seamus O'Shea (1%, 14 Votes)
  • Shane Nally (1%, 13 Votes)
  • Kevin McLoughlin (1%, 11 Votes)
  • Lee Keegan (1%, 9 Votes)
  • Caolan Crowe (1%, 8 Votes)
  • David Clarke (1%, 7 Votes)
  • Conor Loftus (0%, 5 Votes)
  • Jason Doherty (0%, 3 Votes)

Total Voters: 864

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148 thoughts on “Limerick 3-7 Mayo 5-19: fun in the sun

  1. Job done. Sensible selection too starting James Durcan and giving him and Hanley full games…well almost full for Hanley.

  2. Super Mayo…onward to the draw and hope we get another chance to blow off the dirty diesel. Fair play to Cillian… mighty man…

  3. The new players did not make a great impression. Evan showed well but shooting suspect. We are still dependent on the older players. Shame none of the new players took this opportunity against a division 4 team. Cillian was brilliant.

  4. This one went pretty much as expected. My bet is that Mayo will get Offaly / Waterford / Armagh in the next round, plain sailing to the Super 8’s, athough the scorelines / wining margin will get closer all the way.

  5. Job done hope for good draw Monday morning. Let’s push on. Leroy my be better option for midfield going forward need more energy in that sector. But well done by all today.

  6. Home already !
    Hoping for Clare away next and another handy spin down the motorway
    What a reception for Tom P !

  7. Hmmmm @Mayo88 bet you anything we don’t meet any of those teams in the next round …. as we can only meet Sligo/Leitrim/Monaghan/Down/Tipp/Clare/Longford-Dublin/Carlow-Laois

  8. Off topic but…

    Any match report from u20 game? I heard the rossies were impressive beating Galway.

    Is Donovan cosgrove under age for the 20’s? He looked a tenacious young player. Anyone know how he’s doin with his club?

  9. @City West, …not forgetting the possibility that Down might actually beat Donegal tommorow,… Either way Mayo can possibly draw the loser!… Great Day… Great Trip… Great Weather…. Great Pitch… Great Goals and plenty of them.. Great to see so many realitive new players starting and doing well….

  10. COC looking sharp and CH and JD genuine additions. However not convinced about Regan or Caff at FB.

    Must avoid Monaghan next and preferably Down and Tipp.

    The two key issues facing us are as follows:

    1- Replacing TP
    2- Biggest issue of all is taking scores – don’t let scoreboard fool you we were poor at times in front of goal.

    Kudos to SR giving some fellas a chance.

  11. Limerick last penalty was a cert – gas his jersey pulled back as he tried to go for ball. first penalty I thought was harsh, thought Barrett dispossessed him fairly.
    COC was very very sharp, even more so when Andy came on.

  12. Ah spotlight thats not positive I thought out F back was outstanding and our shooting excellent.

  13. Job done but we conceded 3.7 against a v poor D4 team.

    Full bench utilised, up to all the lads to now fight for a jersey for the next stage.

    Still, onwards we go.

  14. Mayonaze….match report on The 42. Cosgrove came on as sub today , Ross Egan kicked 12 points , 6 from play.

  15. Great win. Great feeling. We’re on the road again.
    Hello and how’d to the 82 of ye who voted no to winning on the blog 2 days ago. Hope it wasn’t county supporters.
    Tks Cillian for showing everyone how good you really are. Won’t be long until you catch up to C.C. the gouch. Man of the Match for sure.
    And fantastic to see Tom P. Some guy.has be tough going and incredible to see him turning up with what he’s been through in last while.
    We move onn to Mon draw with heads up.

  16. Will Ross Egan be promoted to the senior panel after his scoring performance for u-20s? It strikes me that we have forwards who can win the ball and assist scores, as Regan and Hanley did today but we still need a natural scorer that they can give the ball to.

  17. The final scoreline put a gloss on it. Fairly disjointed until 50th minute or so. Thought Doherty and then nally added strength, balling winning and mobility to central area when introduced. Andy made a big difference to the attack. Brought it to life; up until then we were struggling to get scores.

    We were a bit loose at the back.

    Let’s remember we were playing one of the lowest ranked teams in the country. No matter who we play next it’ll be a step up. Leitrim please.

  18. So its either Sligo, Leitrim, Clare,Tipperary, Monaghan, Down ,Longford, Laois/Carlow
    Anyone know whats the story with Venues is it First out of the draw for Home Venue.

  19. Such great Mayo Fans. What a brilliant welcome Tom Parsons received when taking his seat in the Stand. A standing ovation! So proud to be a Mayo supporter.

  20. Great result, Cillian was excellent as was Seamus. Thought Aidan looked very frustrated today, five points from five of our starting forwards against a poor division 4 side points is not a good return and will need to improve to go much further in the championship

  21. Mixed bag considering the standard of opposition. Conceding 3 goals is not good.

    Thought J Durcan was lively. Out in front every time and linked play well. Needs to be more composed with shooting however. Hanley had some good moments but was peripheral for a lot of the game. Cillian excellent of course

    Anyway, hard to draw many conclusions up against Div 4 opposition. Move on to the next game.

  22. 3-9 is an absolutely collosal total from our captain today, and nailed all his frees, including a 45.

    29 points from the Gooch’s total. Getting closer!!

  23. So we got 2 left footed frees today and both were missed by Evan Regan. We got 3 left footed frees against Galway and none were converted by Kevin McLoughlin.Cillian nailed every other free suited to his right foot today.
    The only option we have now is Shane Nally the most natural left footed player we have he has to get a chance next week to be thrown on in last 5 minutes today was an insult to the lad.
    If this left footed free problem isn’t addressed its going to cost us another big loss in Croker against a top team were the margins are much they were 2 routine free kicks Evan missed today .You should be just able to roll it of the instep of the boot aiming far post bang over.In my opinion Conor Mort never got the credit he deserved was so reliable of that left and remember young Varley from Garrymore missed two vital 13 yard frees against Donegal in 2012 cost us dearly.
    Shane Nally has to get a chance with these frees now.

  24. Well done to Cillian he was on fire today seems
    Back to his best. I was a bit disappointed with Cian Hanley I expected him to be physically stronger coming from Australia it goes to show that our strength and conditioning programe is top class. Cian will benefit from our strength and conditioning in the next few years but for me Nally and Gallagher are ahead of him and have more to offer in my humble opinion.

  25. Well done Captain Cillian. Delighted to see Lee back. Brilliant Mayo support. Well done re Big Flag.

  26. Hard to learn anything from either of today’s games. There was no real pressure on either team. At u20s Mcloughlin from Westport showed unreal pace and the full forward won a lot of ball. Also impressed with midfielder Jordan ?. Real dogged display. Covered a lot of ground. I’d say he will sleep well tnite. Was also in Limerick. Great stadium and really good occasion. Proud to be a Mayo supporter and proud to be a GAA supporter. Reading Irish Indo and watching TV you would swear that the GAA is like a minority sport. Serious problem with lack of reporting in newspapers and lack of analysis and commentary on TV.

  27. If we get a Div. 3 or 4 team we’re away – game is this day 2 weeks.

    I’d be interested in Ryan O’Donoghue getting a call.

    I see RTE have gone with Dublin/Longford tomorrow instead of Carlow/Longford – watching the Dubs annihilate Lford is hardly the game to be showing. Then again isn’t it great they’re showing any football game at all. No doubt the football segment will get the graveyard shift on the evening edition of the SG – again.

    Full deferred coverage of Donegal Down on BBC 2 at 7 tomorrow evening.

  28. If Carlsberg made perfect evenings then this was it. Delighted with team selection and thought the new lads did very well and still room to improve. Very happy tonight and got to hold the giant Mayo flag up over my head.
    @TH. Mayo don’t play next week.

  29. Over 22,000 views already online of Tom Parsons arrival in the stands today..Unreal. Decent scoreline against a Division 4 team but we cant afford to concede 3 goals a game from here on in…Colossal from Cillian ..Keep his critics quiet for a week..Roll on Monday..

  30. Hee haw hee haw hee haw
    Said the bauld Sean Cavanawh
    Analysing matches for the Sunday game
    Hee haw hee haw hee haw.

  31. Who takes the right sided feees for Dublin ?
    Their best free taker is the answer
    Dean Rock

    Sick bleeting on about this but it’s ludicrous now. Just Cos someone is left footed does not make them a good free taker .
    So now Shane Nally is the answer ? Stop it .
    Cillian on all frees . End of story . Yes he will miss some. So does Rock. But at least there is a bit of belief that he may score some .
    Kevin McLoughlin was practicing them again before the game !!!! Will we not learn fork past mistakes instead of repeating them .
    Didn’t want to be negative after an enjoyable evening but had to respond after ignoring a simailr post last night suggesting Evan Regan was “the answer “.
    We don’t have a left footed free taker . We do however have one of the best free takers in the country. It’s fairly obvious …………

  32. Attendance was announced at in or around 8400
    So similar to the Connacht semi final between Galway and Sligo in salthill ………….I’ve really enjoyed the qualifiers . Great support and atmosphere again this evening. Hopefully ennis next !

  33. Agree 100% with you there, Km79 – it’s the obvious answer staring us in the face.

    Revellino – the official attendance today was 8,230. Which made it 8,200 of our lot there.

  34. Really like the look of J Durcan, his pace and ball handling was top notch, he’ll get better the more games he plays, same as hanley. Very dissapointed in Regan. Im always rooting for him and waiting for him to ignite, but just dont think its gunna happen, seems he needs an acre of space before he shoots, which just isnt available. Thought chris barrett looked very nippy, maybe its just me but seems to have a quicker step than last year??. Aidan seemed aggitated, the heat would get to a man his size. Seamie looked very lively. S Coen needs seirious shooting practice, if he does nothing else for the next 2 wks, he should spend the entirity of training sessions kicking points. Overall happy with the win, no injuries, never out of 3rd gear, Job done. Hopefully Leitrim on Monday.

  35. @Sinabhuil, Jordan Flynn was the midfielder. I would rate him maybe a successor to SOS with in my view more skill to him.
    That U20 team has been built on clubs improving players after minor not centre of excellence improvement.
    I see Johnny Maughan, Joe Dawson and Colm Moran starting the next day. Those three add a lot of power and experiece.

  36. So many positives from today: Tom P’s reception, Cillians new record, new motorway, debutants, players coming back, emptying the bench, sunny day, job done and as Peter said “such great Mayo fans”. A lot of the negatives mentioned above will be worked on-I have no doubt about that as SR alluded to the things that didn’t go right in post match conference. I’m feeling much better tonight based on what I saw today and given the way the Kerry mafiosi were raving about their”great” win last week! Any news on Donie and Harri or what is their situation?

  37. Spot on Km79 let cillian take all frees….he will surely score at least 50% of the ones on the right which is a hell of a lot better than the current 0% run rate from that side

  38. Km79 Rock kicks comfortably with both feet if u paid close attention. U honestly think a predominantly right footed player like Cillian is going to score every tight angle right sided free with his right foot you can’t be serious.
    Shane Nally is a very good free taker for his club Garrymore and deserves to get a shot at the frees.

  39. Thanks for the attendance lads. Great support. Fair play to every child woman and man who could make it.

    I’m a bit surprised that people are dissapointed with Evan Regan. I thought he actually played well. He showed he can beat a player he won one mighty ball in the air maybe should have netted in the early stages but all in all I thought he did pretty well and he’s just back from injury.

  40. 3-9 is an incredible score by Cillian, could be a great season for him. Anyone know where this stands in the all-time scoring record for a championship match? I am aware that Rory Gallagher had the same total in an Ulster match (including 2 penalties) which I believe was an Ulster record and possibly joint record all-time championship record.

  41. Not going to bother anymore .
    Looking forward to the draw Monday.
    Need to avoid Monaghan ideally

  42. I rate Nally but if he was taking those frees it would put him under too much pressure for a guy who is not an established first teamer. Couple of misses and there would be people on his back. Let him make the team first and see after that

  43. A great result, good to see the young guns doing well,I would be concerned about centre field, should Barry Moran have got a run at it,?? looking forward to next round ,well done to all,hon Mayo

  44. Great win and start to the qualifiers. Super determination shown from Cillian from word go. I wasn’t there unfortunately but listening to it you could tell he led from start to finish.
    Hope we can bring that drive into the next game. We’re more than capable of beating any of the beaten provincial semi-finalists.
    This Mayo team have stared fear in the eyes for a long long time now, time they got the respect they deserve.
    Onwards and upwards!
    Thanks for the excellent report Williejoe.

    Maigh Eo Abú

  45. Dean Rock never takes frees with his left foot. He takes lots of right sided frees with his right foot.

    Just let Cillian take all of them.

  46. Scored 5-19 and it could have been 8-27. Sensational stuff which will send shock waves up and down the Country. All against a side who were reported to be “going well in training”. Nobody will want us in the next round or the round after that.

  47. You know, I bet ya any money Evan Regan and Kevin McLoughlin are knocking those left footed frees over at training but put them in front of 10000 supporters it’s a whole different ball game.. all it is is a confidence thing so I believe we should give them more time depending on who we draw next. Speaking of confidence.. I thought Young Hanley showed well today and was involved in a lot of good moves.. impressed, think he will get better and better with plenty of football. The Limerick midfielder had a fine game but our Cillian was outstanding. Some ball in by Aido too

  48. COC is top class. Our major players deliver consistently which is why we are so hard to beat. Think Leroy in the middle will be a required option to replace Tom. Only problem is we need him in backs as well or else Vaughan and Harry back!

  49. I think Diarmuid would be a more natural midfielder. Put Leeroy back in his best position.

  50. I think Diarmuid is ready for midfield beside Seamus. Great to see the team play more running game this evening. Diarmuid always seems to have the engine for this and he is a natural replacement for Tom. Well done to Cillian on a great personal scoring performance. Himself and Andy are a great double act when they get going.

    For the life of me I couldn’t see much wrong with the tackle that lead to the penalty for the last goal. I didn’t see the referee consult with the umpires who maybe were closer to the incident than him.

  51. Keegan in midfield could be the smart play that makes the difference later on this year

  52. Getting this out there now early as I’v been with just a small few others like Mayo messi saying that we had a very good u20 team this year.
    At U20 I think we have a decent chance of winning an all Ireland with that team and I thought that before today.
    I’v never seen a squad of underage players to be almost all going really well with their clubs after minor. Then it’s just a very solid squad with subs. If you go through the elements of what makeup a title winning team:
    – Good goalkeeper n kickouts
    – Good freetakers
    – Size and power
    – Pace
    – Solid defense and defenders
    – powerful midfield
    – scoring forwards
    – strong bench
    – 3 or 4 star quality players
    I think they will beat Roscommon as they have a stronger squad overall.

  53. @TH – I like Shane Nally but none of those videos show him taking frees from the right hand side.

  54. JP – our underage teams could do with a good run fairness. Some good players in the U20 team, I just wasn’t sure they had enough for a team.

    Why weren’t Conor Diskin and Stephen McGreal on the 26 today. Injuries?

  55. Well done, lads. Ok, we have to take into account the Calibre of opposition, but what impressed me, was a willingness by all, to buy into Stephen Rochford’s management/selection calls. Make no mistake, SR has a very fine balancing line to contain, weaker managers implode under the pressure – “if you can keep your head, when all about you are loosing theirs….” He, the squad, and all ye (us) supporters deserve huge credit. Stay confident, keep looking for extra options, and with that unity of spirit, it doesn’t matter a jot whether it is 8/9 games you have to win – a powerful force has now been unleashed!

  56. Well done Mayo, Not perect by the sound of things, but mission accomplished, with a bit to spare, and a lot more positives than negatives, reading between the lines here, our captain seems to be finding good form, just when we need him, we should be more finely tuned in 2 weeks time, with fitness and injuries improved, so all we need is another handy draw, maybe even another L, and we should be good to go, Up Mayo.

  57. The best left footed player we have ?
    Kevin McLoughlin says hello !
    This is ludicrous anyway .
    You are suggesting that a player who isn’t even a regular match day panel member (rightly or wrongly ) never mind a regular starter and has never taken a free at intercounty level is now the answer ………and yes I am aware rock can kick off both feet .
    So can Cillian . And the way things are going I’d back him off his left over whoever the left footed free taker flavour of the week is !
    Has anyone mentioned Enda Varley yet 😉

    And what about Conor Loftus ? Wasn’t he supposed to replace Cillian on frees anyway ?
    We will soon have no room for most of our starting forwards to make way for all this free kicking specialists :p

  58. Hat off to you again WJ. You do a great match report and have it up in great time to keep this circus on the road. You have your mileage to put up after all that too, so thanks and appreciation for all your effort.

    The blog is 100 times better than any paper report.
    It’s as good as live.
    It has all the views. The paper has 1 view for a specific reporter. This reporter may be wrong. You only get the 1 view from the paper and sometimes your reading a slightly biased view in a match report.
    On the blog we get every angle. Biased, unbiased, happy, angry, insightful, unsightly, wishful, hopeful, hopeless. It doesnt matter, we get to read the peoples minds here and it sure as hell beats 1 view from someone who is typing for cash.

    Hon the Blog
    Hon Mayo.
    Hon WJ.

  59. Much too good for a poor side like Limerick as expected but i’m not sure if Limerick deserved that margin of defeat, Mayo only led by 8 points with ten minutes to go. 4 goals in 8 minutes gave the final scoreline a flattering look and lets be honest against better teams goals like that won’t be as easy got.

    Tougher draw i think needed for round 2 i feel now as nothing will be learnt if drawn v someone as bad as Limerick again.

    @JP Mayo were playing Leitrim the worse U20 team in Connacht by some distance its best not to get too carried away.

  60. Why not Aidan O’Shea for the left boot?

    Lots of positives this evening, but I thought Aidan seemed a bit frustrated. Especially when he appeared to give out to Mcloughlin in the first half… not sure why today, but I thought it unusual for him. He played well overall.

  61. From my viewpoint Aidan had the ball out on the wing towards the Mackey stand and 2 Limerick players around him, a big gap had opened up for Kevin to run into. Aidan sold a dummy for Kevin to bolt into the space and receive a pass with a goal for the taking. But Kevin remained relatively static. Aidan then won a free and threw a bit of a strop.

  62. Great result today, well done the lads. I think Leeroys best position is at half back and breaking out at speed an doing what he does best. Midfield options to partner Seamie for me are, Donie, Shane, Barry or D O’C only, and leave all the frees to C O’C.
    Onwards and upwards!

  63. I know the ideal solution for frees on the right is to have someone who can kick them over.
    If we.don’t have somone who can do that fairly consistently then surely we should have lads making runs and getting open and feed them the ball from the free.
    Every wide from these frees is posession to the opposition. A short free towards a more central position and we either end up with an open kicking attempt at goal or we generate another free in a far more kickale position. No point in us continually kicking posession to the opposition.

  64. Jp I can only take it that Conor Diskin was injured probably in the top 3 players in this age group he led Colmans to the Connacht A Colleges title last season and was a standout performer v St Brendans Killarney in the All Ireland semi final.Think Stephen McGreal has another year and would probably find it hard start in that very competitive forward line.

  65. Hanley did well once he settled. Had some very good touches and looks a prospect; also has a habit of kicking the ball too far ahead of himself.
    James Durcan handled great. More please.
    Anyone notice Aido and Kev have a spat after Aido won a free? Kev seemed annoyed he hadn’t passed it to him.
    Glad Caff had a fine performance and got a good pre-match roar. Will surely make him feel appreciated after that bullshit the last day.
    Cillian made hay against loose marking but it was still very impressive. It’s a shame his record bid wasn’t properly built up/signposted before the game so that third point could’ve been celebrated in the moment. Frustrating when it went over and the crowd seemed oblivious.
    How bad was the national anthem. It sounded like someone was playing it on their smartphone and the crowd were afraid to wake a baby.

  66. Was at both U20 and Senior matches today and not terribly impressed by either considering that the opposition in both was probably as poor as we’re likely to meet this year. Yes, there were some outstaanding performances but as team efforts not great. Re the senior it certainly showed the merit of keeping both Andy and Cillian close to goal in the full forward line. To highly intelligent players playing off each other to deadly effect. There are enough others to do the chasing around the field.

  67. I found it strange that all three Claremorris lads were missing off the 26 today, not just Diskin and McGreal but also Matthew Macklin this teams CHB in 2016 who playing week in, week out with Claremorris seniors. Another well built young man. Can’t see all three being injured. McGreal is still U19 and going up against a lot of forward talent but the other two are U20 players and the among the strongest within the group.

  68. Agree with Revellino, about the Mayo Gaa Blog…. Take a bow Willie Joe!… Yeah I seen the ‘bit’ of a spat between Kevin McLoughlin and Aido…. It looked to me that Kevin should have ran on onto space to accept the hand pass, on first look, Except that to Kevin, it looked as if he had seen a long kick pass on, and wanted to take the ball from behind AOS and kick the ball into a player in an even more advantageous position…. Crossed wires,…. Mayo strung several lighting fast passing movement’s together during the match, trying to exploit maximum damage to the score board …. 5..19 will tell you that a big percentage paid off…. And that’s with 50%of our forwards, new or nearly new, with James Durcan, Cian Hanley, first ever championship starts,and Evan Regan only back from injury but never really nailed down a guaranteed start…. Different player’s make different runs… All were a success in my opinion,… But it’s still going to be be very hard to leave out Andy and Jason Doherty first the next match… Let’s see who we draw first!

  69. The Galway & Roscommon U20 teams were listed on the U20 Program today and what struck me was how few of the Galway minor team of 2016 were listed for U20 duty today. Particularly I missed Evan Murphy, on the ’40 for both 2016 & 2017 minors and who looked to have all the qualities needed for a senior player in a few years.
    While I wasn’t particularly impressed with Mayo one admirable aspect of their play was their ability to kick points from play. And without an outstanding display of goalkeeping by Leitrim’s ‘keeper there could have been a few more goals to Mayo’s credit.

  70. AndyD – I believe Evan Murphy is involved with Galway seniors and thus ineligible for the u20 side. That’s an important point in this new competition – the best u20s in the county cannot play!! For me it waters down the prestige of the competition. Clifford and Sean o Shea for example won’t be lining out with Kerry’s u20 team which would leave a question mark over any potential victory over kerry. In Mayo, we have no player u21 on the senior panel so it’s a genuine best u20 side in the county for us. I’d love to see us win the all Ireland u20 title but Leitrim are very weak at this level so wouldn’t be getting carried away just yet. Surprised Johnny Maughan is not starting though – it indicates a decent level of strength in depth in this side.

  71. Evan Murphy was not listed for Galways game against Mayo and was therefore eligible.
    There is no way u18 Rory Brickendon will start ahead of U20 Castlebar senior Johnny Maughan the next day.
    Matthew Macken is Claremorris senior wing back/centre back a long way ahead of other options for centre back. I don’t know what that is about.
    Conor Diskin at 6’3″ and going well was definitely a bench option at least.

  72. R P Murphy, when you look back to Leeroy breakung forward at speed from Midfield as he did against Ross in the first game last year, I think he is a better option that any of the options you have named. After his performance in AI would have Barrett CHB and Donie FB

  73. Hego,how embarrassed do you think Cillian would have felt if the crowd were cheering and whooping when he passed the record.I can guarantee you that he would be cringing!.This achievement is one for him to look back on in years to come,but for now it isn’t even on his rader.

  74. Evan Murphy is injured lads thats why he missed out yesterday. Galway lost one of their best forwards with a stupid red card after only 6 minutes and Rob Finnerty ( Anthony’s son ) the same after 55 mins. On both occasions for striking when we had won close in frees. That was the difference and the Rossies held out just about in the end. Cant comment on Mayo but Roscommon are well beatable on yesterday’s viewing.. The expected result for yer seniors. Job done and ready for Monday’s draw. Id expect a much stronger test awaits…

  75. Goodman Tuamstar. The Mayo team are now ready for much stronger tests. We were far more accomplished than 4 weeks ago and we are now setting our minds on the next rung of the ladder. We fully intend to be still playing poker when the big chips are tossed on to the table. Our football season is only kicking off now. We’re excited, we’re hungry and we’re ready to go.

  76. Cillian misses the odd one, left or right and so would anyone who takes all the frees. He is our leading scorer of all time. He’s still a gasúr and will be knocking them over for mayo for years to come. We have great, great players and a wonderful team and the reality is that without Cillian and his frees we wouldn’t have the success we have.
    Leave him at it.

  77. We have seen u21 and minor teams beat poor Leitrim and Sligo teams last few years- get built up then onky to get totally outplayed by Galway or Ros. Hopefully this team will be different. A Connaught title would be nice.

  78. Excuse my ignorance but what is the format for under 20 , is it the same as under 21 just straight knockout or does it replace minor and provincial runner up stays in competition. I presume it’s the former but just making sure , thanks.

  79. Great to get the win but it was a glorified training session. Negative is new faces didn’t impress so we will be looking to the usual suspects. Positive is Cillian looks sharp again.

    Nally and Crowe deserved starts in my opinion.

  80. It’s the former, Sean. But with a twist – it’s being run off differently in each province. In Connacht and Ulster it’s straight knockout, in Munster and Leinster it’s a round-robin format. You would have thought that in launching a new competition the GAA might have hard-wired a consistent format for it for each of the provinces but that, of course, would have been too much like hard work.

  81. JP I feel you place too much emphasis on the ages of the players. We have had lots of u19 players starting on our u21 teams, like every other county over the years. Any guy destined for the highest level should be capable of making an u20 team as an 18 year old. Tom cunniffe, seamus o Shea for example were only u19 when they both played in central position on our 2006 u21 team. Diarmuid o Connor, a more recent example – was actually a county senior at u19. Akram was only 18 or 19 in 2016 when we won the AI. A good club player might make an u20 side in his last year, but may never play for Mayo seniors. If brickenden is on the team as a u18 it’s a sign he’s a very talented lad… Barry Moran played midfield for Mayo u21s in an all Ireland final while still a minor – went on to have a long career at senior level.

  82. Yew Tree – copying and pasting from what Citywest posted last night our possible Round 2 opponents are Sligo, Leitrim, Monaghan, Down/Donegal, Tipp, Clare, Longford (or Dublin), Carlow/Laois.

  83. Brilliant support today . It was a joy to be there . 1st half was poor enough but 2nd half was better . Sharp play at times from limericks midfield left us on the back foot for pace but they went nowhere really with the back line shutting the door , mind you where was our back line for limericks 2nd goal ? Left one on one . Still roll on monday.

  84. We need to find a midfield partner for seamie. Coen just isn’t ready yet. We need to be giving more panel members game time. Why not bring on S. Nally and A . Gallagher. Start Crowe and have a good look at him. Mcgloughlin and AOS could have been taken off and rested. Rochford needs to start deciding who’s good enough to bring on in a big game who can improve things and not just for the sake of making substitutions. Tactical changes during game time is Rochfords biggest weakness. Maybe too much emphasis/ reliance is put on stats and not enough on coaching staff actually watching the game.

  85. No point in getting another duck shot in the next round. Someone like Down or Tipp might be more of a test given their division 2 status. Good chance of Tyrone Monaghan Cavan in round 3 so we need a better test in round 2.

  86. Great to see Tom Parsons getting his adoration and up and about….
    Cillian is already a legend and can get better, what a player!!
    Aidan’s passing was class
    …like always we cannot get to low about a bad game and to high about this, but it was great to get the feel good factor back…
    Still think we need to develop these young players (forwards and midfield cover) to keep the trued and trusted on there feet and ensure good transitions when they hang up their boots ..
    Games like yesterday are ideal opportunities albeit they have to won!

  87. @Larry Duff, Ignoring ages I’v seen those players in club, county and schools. Those final year u20s are better footballers.

  88. All of the U20 panel weren’t considered for selection yesterday no injuries hopefully all will be available from now as we will need more physicality as or if we progress Ross Egan was outstanding from play and frees Mc Loughlin was very good I was on my way to Limerick when he got red card there is a very good squad there Roscommon at home will be a tougher challenge.

  89. Liatroim v Maigh Eo is what we want so see tomorrow coming out of the owl velvet bag or owl glass bowls or whatever they use these days.

  90. Interestingly our main schools had a big input into developing those players also.
    Rice College, St. Colmans and Ballinrobe.

  91. Joe Brolly is right that Diarmuid Connoolly will be a big loss to Dublin, in particular when a team is willing to put it up to Dublin like we have in recent years, and is probably the main reason Dublin won the 3 in a row. Mind you, Keith Duggan made this point weeks ago. He is also correct in terms of lauding Leroy, the player he picked on in advance of an AIF with Donegal. Let’s not get our knickers in a twist with the rest of his page filler.

  92. If we had got the draw Roscommon have got in the championship for the past few years, (i.e, play leitrim and straight into a Connaught final) we’d have bitten your hand off to get it. An easy draw gives you time to get your ducks in a row and should not be just considered as a duck shoot. We will have plenty of opportunities for meeting tough opposition in the weeks to come and hopefully more players will be back from injury and up to full fitness. What’s the point in getting caught by a Tipperary team now full of intent after a poor showing against Cork. Division 4 or 3 opposition will do just grand and take us one step further along the road in the direction of the Super 8. Leitrim or Sligo would be just fine tomorrow morning.

  93. Good win. Some good performances. Limerick all due respect to them were very poor. Some lads that got a chance stood up and played well like James Durcan and Cian Hanley. Andy’s movement is top class. Cillian as I have always said whether its the 1st round of the qualifiers or a big day in Croke park he will produce the goods. Disappointed with Aido yesterday besides a few tap over scores and good pass for a goal. He was poor. Was at fault for 1-1 in the 1st half for not tracking his man. He lets his man around him so easy for a big man and then hasn’t the pace to make it up. Another postive from yesterday evening is that game won’t have taken any big energy out of Mayo. Keep us ticking over for the next round.

  94. Yew tree – Longford could only hold 6000 for their last game. 8000 mayo people in limerick yesterday. Longford are better supported too. So 3000 or so of yesterday’s crowd would have to stay at home

  95. We have no say over who we get we will have 12 days to prepare for the next game not the one we may play in August or September SR is taking it one game at a time in him we must trust. TP hung around for half an hour talking and taking pictures with small and some not so small children before the game.

  96. Done Deal – I would imagine the GAA would take he game out of Londord so not hat case as per the Aughrim ruling.

    Aside, I was speaking to a member of the the u20 team and he said the MacHale Park surface is a disgrace. Come on Mayo GAA time to sort out the pitch.

  97. If this has been covered here before then so be it but I have a stone in my shoe regarding the qualifiers. Mayo and Tyrone both lost their respective province quarterfinals. So why are they not in the current group of qualifier teams that we are amongst?

  98. You have answered you own question Joet
    they are losing provincial quarter finalists
    There are 2 pots for this round
    One pot contains losing semi finalists (the teams we can draw ) the other are the round 1 qualifiers (Tyrone and ourselves amongst this )
    If we both win then round 3 is an open draw of these 8 remaining teams

    We can however get Monaghan tomorrow ( NO THANKS) . As could Tyrone ( YES PLEASE)

  99. Off the top of my head we scored 6-25 or something like that in Connacht final v Sligo 2015

  100. Regarding the surface of McHale Park, I heard a very interesting interview on Radio 1 business show yesterday with a guy from Sligo that is going around the world installing football pitches in a matter of days in all sorts of sports venues globally. Ok it may be a rolls Royce option, but that bullet must be bitten before there are any more serious injury on that surface.
    In relation to yesterday it was a great confidence builder. I was really impressed with the way the team moved the ball, they were very slick in their handling. Good to see more of the panel getting game time. Finishing remains a problem. I don’t think we can read too much into the game, it turned out to be a turkey shoot, but Limerick cut through easy enough at times, so more to do. No point worrying about who we get next until 8.45 tomorrow

  101. Leitrim please and thank you. A sunny weekend in Carrick would be lovely jubley.

    And as said above, Tyrone v Monaghan please!

    Anyone else heading to the Hyde on Sunday? Be great to see our boys get their hands on a Connacht medal. It has been far too sporadic of late.

  102. Huge Huge improvement in Cillians ball striking last night.This has been absent in his play for 18 months in my opinion.Dont worry about other free takers he can do the lot when his confidence is up.Durcan showed well and ahead of Regan for me.Hanley is game and saw lots of ball just needs games and lots of them.

  103. Willie Joe, the copied and pasted piece from city west you posted earlier doesn’t have Tyrone in it?

  104. hi again well done on yer victory yesterday i wasn. t a t the game
    as im going to big game for us to day v waterford i ve been looking at
    a lot of blogs on your site and even gone back to look at a lot of the older ones
    the thing i noticed was as an outsider an honest opinion was some blogs are measured and sensible
    while others were really over the top getting carried away i m afraid us limreck are
    probaly one of the worst if not the worst football team in ireland at the moment tiss like if we
    beat leitrim in a hurling match after losing to clare and winning by a big margin and all of a sudden we
    think we going to win ai ps longford will be hard to beat who ever gets them in round 2

  105. Agree Cillian for all frees. Others should continue to practice them in training though. Cillian could get injured. It’s all in the head. Kevin could hit them over in his sleep if there was no crowd there, I’m thinking. Try taking off the ground?

    Although Aido was looking frustrated at times, he was influential. Two wonderful laser-like low passes. Reminiscent of Kieran Mac at his best. Low, accurate ball into forwards makes all the difference. Look at Goal 3, which was poetry in motion.

  106. Joet1480 – as others have already pointed out, we can’t draw Tyrone in Round 2 as they’re in the same pot as us. That list only includes the counties we can draw, i.e. any one of the beaten provincial semi-finalists.

  107. Joey1480 – Tyrone are on our side of the draw (beaten provincial quarter finalists). The teams named by WJ (one of whom we will be paired with tomorrow) are on the other side and are the beaten semi-finalists

  108. I thought we had a decent first half yesterday but really let up in second half before Andy came on and goals went in to gloss over the scoreboard a bit. In my opinion James Durcan was the best newcomer as he showed well and has good hands, also not afraid to run straight for goals and beat a man. Hanley did not seem to get up to speed of game and Evan Regan confidence disappears once he misses his first shot. The coen Seamus o Shea combination does not, I don’t think Coen has the ability to hold that spot at this level. He is a good squad player to have but others surely ahead in footballing ability.

  109. Wait for it, wait, wait….. I think I can hear the sound of a penny dropping…….at last. Duh!

  110. So if we get Tyrone next do we want it away or at home?

    Who can we get in round 3 if we beat Tyrone?

    Can we draw ourselves in round 4?

    Would we want that to be home or away?

  111. Willie Joe you have the patience of a saint with these people who can’t seem to understand the qualifier draws even after you explain it to them. I wonder do they know that a goal = 3 points !

  112. @ lim

    Limerick were great hosts again yesterday. Best of luck to them in the Hurling today and for the rest of the year ahead.

  113. The thing that impressed me about Hanley most is that when in possession he ran at the defence with speed, sucking in defenders around him, and then recycling the ball quickly to a player in space to tap over. Like others have said he needs lots more games. Ball still not been moved quickly enough out of midfield. Don’t think Keith should have been taken off when he was… straight after the goal.. almost like he was been punished for making a hash of it. He’d be his own worst critic… looked like thunder coming off.

  114. WJ,mabye I’m sounding pedantic,but when you add up all the votes in the poll,the tally comes to a lot more than(at the moment)735.

  115. I think the explanation is that sometimes when you log on the poll results are not visible and the only way to see them is to vote again. I have done that a few times. However I’d say the vote only actually counts once even though it is listed more than once in the individual players total

  116. A few people above are hoping that Tyrone and Monaghan get drawn together tomorrow morning.

    However, I don’t think that will be allowed to happen as they have already played each other.

  117. Nope they can meet in round 2 Opt. But not in round 3.

    Figure that one out!

    We could have got Galway too if they had lost to Sligo but not round 3. It’s a funny one

  118. Willie Joe, if Cillian has 600 votes out of 700 that’s more than 55%.. I think he has over 80%

  119. Mayo Mark I’m very tempted to head for the Hyde on Sunday (if there is room for us!). Couldn’t make the U20 game yesterday due to work (nearly missed the senior game too!) but would like to be there to lend some support and get a proper look at them. We are badly due a good run at that level.

    So how many pots are there in tomorrow’s draw?!

  120. We can actually draw Galway tomorrow and end up in the Connacht Final. It’s a funny format this year

  121. Yesterday was a lovely day out. Beautiful weather and a bit of the feel-good factor returning. Obviously you couldn’t read too much into either the positives or the negatives but what’s the point if you can’t enjoy days like those? That was my first time back in the Gaelic Grounds since 2014 (the Cork game last year was the only one I couldn’t get to) so I admit I got a cold shiver going back in. Thankfully the demons have now been exorcised …

    It would have been an absolutely perfect day if Meath had managed to close the deal against Tyrone, but then when have Meath ever done anything apart from sicken our happiness? And to be fair I would still like to get another crack at Tyrone at some point …

    From the newer players yesterday I thought James Durkan had a great game. Was a little surprised by Hanley – I definitely thought he would be more physical – but he is incredibly pacey and it is seriously early days for him yet. I saw enough to convince me that a few more games will benefit him as will the S&C. This year might not be the year he excels but I have no doubt he will. It was good to see Nally coming on – I just wish it had been a little earlier.

    I thought Chris Barrett was great yesterday. Nothing I love more than seeing him fire over a shot from distance. I think he will be huge for us again this year.

    Disappointing return for Evan Regan but his set-up of the goal was sublime. Let’s not forget he is not log back from a serious injury too with no game time. I’d sooner have him on the bench than not. If there is one thing we need this year in the worst way, it’s options from the bench.

    Our free-taker however should be Cillian O’Connor when he is fit – end of. The lack of a plan B however is a concern. The answer to that is not and never shall be Kevin McLoughlin. Kevin is a warrior for us; let him do the job he is good at. As for Cillian, a nice achievement yesterday too. (As was Conor Mortimer’s). And Cillian’s achievement should be in no way diminished because of a lack of All-Ireland medals; it takes a team to win an All-Ireland, not an individual, and he has more than contributed his share.

    Can we just wear that black jersey for the year ahead please? We seem to do pretty damn well when we’re in it …

  122. Yes Leantimes, calling it a spat is a stretch. But for about three second Aido was raging!
    They were quality passes alright, MikeMc. Lit up the game.
    I’m not sure why Cillian would be embarrassed, Opt2misteek. It’s an extraordinary achievement.

  123. Magnificent is a bit of a stretch Horse. He’ll struggle to hold on to a starting position this year when we draw tougher opposition.

    Give the lad a bit of breathing space and hopefully he’ll grow into an important player over the next couple of years.

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