Mayo 2-13 Donegal 0-11: power and efficiency seals semi-final place

Mayo Donegal full-time 2015

Five-in-a-row. I know the five Nestors on the spin didn’t rock everyone’s boat but five successive wins at the All-Ireland quarter-final stage is definitely an achievement to be proud of. And not any quarter-final wins either – two each over Cork and Donegal, one each when they were defending All-Ireland champions.

All of these wins have been thrilling, all worthy of celebration, but I think (and it’s not only the drink talking here) that today’s emphatic 2-13 to 0-11 victory over Donegal might well be the most satisfactory of the lot. Why? Because we took them on, overpowered them all over the field and then made damn sure they weren’t going to get close to breaking down our defensive shield in the final quarter. 2013 may have been champagne football, this one was – I dunno – some kind of special reserve single malt whiskey or something like that.

It was also the strangest match-day I’ve lived through since the site’s inception. I’ve missed loads of Mayo matches in the past – most of them due to living abroad – but never since I started the blog back in 2007 have I failed to get to an All-Ireland series match involving us. This year’s holiday plans made such an outcome unavoidable on this occasion but it still felt decidedly weird to be the best part of 3,000 miles away from Croke Park this evening as the lads took the field for one of the defining matches of the summer.

Still, I had a ringside seat at a bar round the corner from the hotel so I was able to watch every twist and turn of the game live on Sky. And I didn’t hold back in the vocal stakes either, as my poor kids – going increasingly scarlet at my verbal promptings – could no doubt confirm.

I’m not going to go into a detailed description of how the match played out – many of you were there today and so are in a better position to describe events. So instead I’ll just provide some broad-brush thoughts on the contest.

From what I could see, this was an act in roughly three parts. The first was the initial shadow-boxing phase, where we probed each other’s weaknesses looking for openings. This lasted most of the first half and for most of this time we had the upper hand, though not decidedly so. Three up at the half-hour mark, I thought then a goal was near but when Donegal got the next two points I was happy enough to see us go in at the break one in front.

But it was just before the half-time whistle sounded that Aidan O’Shea ushered in the start of Act II, which was where we hit the gas and left them for dead. The goal that looked for a good fifteen minutes like it was coming finally arrived when Aidan O’Shea superbly fielded a long ball in, turned and, with two or three Donegal lads hanging out of him, smashed it to the net to give us a four-point half-time lead.

The goal was a crucial game-changer. Donegal were now forced to come out of their shell and attack us, which was exactly what we wanted them to do as this opened up space in their half for us.

And, boy, did we exploit it. Our next score was another goal, with Lee Keegan – who’d already banged over two superb first half points – sent in a shot that curled viciously into the corner of Durcan’s net. Was he going for a point or a goal? Really, who cares? The end result was what mattered.

What it meant was that Donegal were now seven behind, a gap that widened to eight soon after when Cillian O’Connor knocked over a free. Eight points was still the gap at the end so we can take it that, following Cillian’s point, Act III began. This segment was all about keeping Donegal at bay, restricting them to the odd point here and there while nicking a few at the other end ourselves, while all the while making damn bloody sure that no goals would be conceded.

In that, we succeeded admirably. Once they broke through for a shot that was always blazing over but, that apart, they never came close to scoring either of the two goals they would have needed to reel us back in.

It wasn’t pretty and I felt that, in shutting up shop the way we did, we maybe passed up on the chance to give them a right hiding. Had we kept the pedal to the floor after Lee’s goal I think we could have easily doubled our winning margin but I can see that we reckoned then that we had enough in the bank at that stage and so all we needed to do was hold the line in order to get over the line. Which we did with a calm and ruthless efficiency.

It was the controlled and well-planned way that we went about choking the life out of Donegal’s challenge which made this win so deeply and enormously satisfying. The Horan years were one I’ll treasure for as long as I’m on this earth but so often big matches in those years were a seats-of-the pants experience. Today’s second half display looked, in contrast, like it had been war-gamed to destruction in advance.

All the lads knew exactly what they were doing and never once did we leave our full-back line exposed in the way we so often did in the past, in the way we did as recently as the Connacht final this year. At last, we’ve put in place our own bespoke defensive shield, one that today proved very effective.

A few things didn’t chime, like the four successive attempted points that we dropped short, like all the slipping and sliding on the greasy surface (was everyone wearing the right boots?), like Cillian O’Connor’s underwhelming return from placed balls, like the two kickouts punted out over the sideline, the first by David Clarke and the second by his half-time replacement Robbie Hennelly.

But today was only quarter-final day, one where you don’t necessarily want or expect everything to go right for you. To see a number of areas of obvious improvement while dispatching a battle-hardened outfit like Donegal with relative ease speaks volumes for where this team are now at.

The cards we picked up in the second half will be costly, though. Donal Vaughan’s merited black card was his second of this championship campaign so I’m almost sure that rules him out of the semi-final and if that is the case he’ll be a significant loss to us against a team like Dublin.

Hopefully Kevin Keane’s ludicrous straight red will be appealed. Of course he shouldn’t have retaliated but what a sad and pathetic creature Murphy was to instigate the incident and then appeal for Keane to be carded. I never had much time for Murphy before today, I’ve zero respect for him after this incident.

It’s difficult to pick out standout performers today, as in so many ways today was the epitome of a team performance. Everyone knew their role and everyone did what they needed to do and they all deserve immense credit for how they performed.

For my money, I thought Keith Higgins, Lee Keegan, Colm Boyle, Tom Parsons, Aidan O’Shea, Kevin McLoughlin, Barry Moran and Jason Doherty were all close to brilliant today, with Lee – so tigerish at the back, so full of running and lethal going forward, notching up 1-2 from play – the primus inter pares on the day.

And hats off too to Noel and Pat and their backroom team who today demonstrated beyond doubt their tactical acumen on the sideline and their ability to put in place a gameplan that the players executed so well in practice. If it can be said – and I think it can – that the team moved to a different level in how they performed today then equally so it needs to be acknowledged that Noel and Pat were central to this shift to what looks like higher ground tactically.

But, of course, we’ve won nothing yet. Now it’s onto the Dubs in three weeks time, with Croke Park packed to the rafters and everything once more on the line. This is what it means to be alive, this is what it means to support the team in these remarkable times that we now increasingly see as the norm. Can’t wait!

Mayo: David Clarke; Ger Cafferkey, Donal Vaughan, Keith Higgins (0-1); Lee Keegan (1-2), Tom Cunniffe, Colm Boyle; Seamus O’Shea, Tom Parsons; Diarmuid O’Connor, Aidan O’Shea (1-0), Kevin McLoughlin (0-2); Barry Moran, Cillian O’Connor (0-3, two frees), Jason Doherty (0-3). Subs: Chris Barrett for Cunniffe, Robbie Hennelly for Clarke, Patrick Durcan for Vaughan (black card), Andy Moran (0-1) for Barry Moran (blood), Alan Freeman (0-1) for Seamus O’Shea, Kevin Keane for Cafferkey.

83 thoughts on “Mayo 2-13 Donegal 0-11: power and efficiency seals semi-final place

  1. Woohoo 2 to go

    Defence were absolutely outstanding, really time to believe

    Aidan OShea is something else, we can really do it lads!

  2. Great win. Flat second half. Good to see mayo able to hang back and out Donegal Donegal. I was hoping pat and noel would play 4 midfielders. Barry Moran excellent shoring up the defence. Fairly ugly second part of second half but good to see we can do that too.

  3. Kevin Keane what were you thinking? Costly red at end of brilliant all round display.but sure mayo still haven’t been tested.

  4. Great Win, Great defence. Best i have seen from this group of players. Still have to work on shooting . A few dropped into goalies hands but that will come. Well done all round

  5. First hurdle cleared and boy didn’t they make it look easy. Superb in every position and strategy, missed a few easy ones but to win a quarter final against a team like Donegal pulling up says it all.
    The match ups were spot on and as said above we out donegalled, donegal with a good bit of our own flair thrown in.
    KK got a silly red but may be able to get it overturned on appeal.
    Next up the Dubs and they haven’t been tested yet so they are the ones with the most concerns at this point.
    Great performance, thanks to all the lads and management.
    MaighEo Abu

  6. Congratulations to Mayo from a disappointed but not altogether surprised donegal woman. I was happy enough with the first half (apart from the numerous wides) and I actually thought we’d win the second half until that killer blow from AOS. Mayo then had the luck on their side when that point effort dropped in over Durcans head. And that was that! I’ve had some great days out this summer and I feel like I can relax now and enjoy some great games. I’ll be waving the green and red from here on in. Cmon Mayo, this is your year 🙂

  7. Jeez I didn’t think for a second Donegal would ever win that myself during the game. completely outclassed really. A 12 point Mayo win wouldn’t have flattered us

    Did any Donegal player even play well? Only one forward scored. That said McGee was doing very well till Aido got the goal

    The only real negative was Cillian’s performance. But he can’t be as bad at shooting again

    Higgins, Parsons, SOS, AOS, Leeroy would all get 9 out of 10 ratings from me. And Doc and Cafferkey not far off

    Donegal really are at a crossroads now. They barely have anything coming through and no bench

    Anyhow on to the 30th for ourselves. We’ll be rightfully underdogs but I’m very quietly confident

  8. Ah now Ciaran! He more or less said he was going for the point on the post match interview. Naw, Mayo were comfortable winners for sure, we just hadn’t the engine to challenge you today. What I mean was, the first half was fairly even and if we were only a point behind, based on some of our second half performances this summer, I thought we would come out and up our game. The goal completely killed it. Without a shadow of a doubt, Mayo were totally deserving and impressive in their emphatic win.

  9. Wonderful defensive work. Best balance I’ve seen ever. A win that should give them a great belief for what’s to come!
    Congrats to all!

  10. I think pat and Noel got all the tactics right. I spent the first half thinking we would lose the game and the second half knowing we would win it.

    The dubs is going to be a brilliant game

  11. Great stuff. I`m over the moon. Think big Barry un nerved them early on. That`s what

    we need more of — a game plan and a joker sometimes in the pack. Have a good

    night everyone. Summer has arrived at last.

  12. For those of you who doubted hang your head in shame.
    This team is on a mission.
    With regards Keane it’s Murphy who pushed for the booking.
    He wasn’t silly as was suggested but unlucky.
    Press will say Donegal were jaded and that’s fine.
    Tactics and positioning had me in a spin so hats off to Noel and Pat.
    One critic I would have on this great day is that we withdrew our most potent attacker to midfield way too soon.
    It’s our year. It’s our year.

  13. A great display from all the team and Barry Moran in particular. He was excellent and really put himself on the line for the team. Hopefully the hype will be kept down and we keep improving as we go forward.

  14. Thank you to this great group of players and to a management team that got all their calls spot on.
    – Game started out cagey, looked like our counter attack were conserving energy.
    – Keegan was in superb form and his two early point were crucial
    – Jason Doherty profited on the opposite wing to AOS when AOS went wide. Something we speculated about on here.
    – Tom Parsons and SOS were consistent all through in all aspects of midfield play. Their tackling was outstanding.
    – Barry Moran as sweeper. I thought I was seeing things. It worked perfect and him moving out for kickouts kept Neil Gallagher quiet
    – Kevin Mc delivered big time
    – Cillian/Diarmuid just an offday shooting but some great tackles. Diarmuid had a great turnover free on McGee and a 30 yard left handed handpass out of trouble on the right wing.
    – The two handedness of the players has progressed each year. Lots of slip balls that are made look easier if you are comfortable on both hands
    – AOS overall broke the game. Rerun of his Kerry cameo as an extra centre back where he turned back runners. He played smart. Dragged cover wide while play went up the other wing
    – Final 20 mins looked like defensive practice for Dublin
    – Finally appeal that red.

  15. Let Keane be a lesson to the rest of the team. If you’re so inclined and need to retaliate or let off steam, verbal much more effective. All round great display especially the defense.

  16. The Kevin Keane dismissal must be appealed and hopefully overturned.

    Yes it was silly but harmless and just a reaction.

    Great win and well done to management-they got it spot on.

  17. Great day. Will have few pints to nite now when I get back to Galway. Well we held Donegal scoreless. I believe we saw a Mayo blanket but changed up the play a lot. These boys on line are cuter than I thought. I wouldn’t like to be another team analysing up we kept mixing up our tactics.AOS played sweeper for while and he scored a great goal .He will get more space against the Dubs. Hplon Mayo.

  18. Well done to the lads today. They were easily the best team today. We have plenty of work to do which is perfect going into the Dublin game. Dublin will be red hot favourites. Can’t wait for them

  19. Also to mention Ger Cafferkey who was not always double helped with Murphy. Did well on him had a lovely win of a ball in second half.
    Great to see young Durcan coming in. If we wanted we could have pressed that game in last 15 minutes and won by more. But overall it good to be realistic that we need a solution to the Dublin blue wave.

  20. No reason not to doubt our defensive tactics before today. Pat and Noel proved they haf a great plan for Donegal today and never amy doubt we had plan to execute. Keabe sending off was a moment of madness by him. He slapped Murphy (who definitely deserved it) several times in the face. Lets hope we get it overturned and Tom and Barry ok for semi.

  21. No reason not to doubt our defensive tactics before today. Pat and Noel proved they had a great plan for Donegal today and never any doubt we had players to execute. Keane sending off was a moment of madness by him. He slapped Murphy (who definitely deserved it) several times in the face. Lets hope we get it overturned and Tom and Barry ok for semi.

  22. Have to admit I was nervous before the match, not because of our opposition but how we would set up and play, I have to say I am impressed. Well done Mayo.

  23. Very professional display by mayo. When they realised we had the last play of the first half forward line set the master stroke into action. The way the inside forwards moved out creating space for the bomb on to Aido

  24. was a joy to witness. We’ll take Leroy’s fluke and from then on it was a case of just do enough and keep them at bay.
    Bring on the dubs!

  25. I just heard keane red gets him 3 weeks,our Simi is 3 weeks and 1 day.if this is right he’s good to go

  26. Defensive strategy was spot on. All in all an excellent performance, congratulations to the team and management. Now for the next challenge. Commiserations, Lorrie, I feel Donegal had to go to the well once too often.

  27. Thanks Lorrie and hard luck to a gallant Donegal team. Mayo once again did our county proud and the word that most springs to mind to describe today is professionalism. Last night the boys did a light warm up in a Meath club, I got the call from some Meath mates to head out but their session was brief and by the time I got there the team bus was moving out. But the point I wish to make is that more than a few Meath lads watching, who know a thing or two about football, were very vocal in expressing how impressed they were about the squad and that they were envious of us having such a fine bunch of men representing our county. A serious compliment if one was ever needed.

  28. St Pats Oldie, agree with all you say but i was delighted to see Aidan back helping defence and launching attacks to give the others some shooting practice particularly Alan and Andy. He was where he was needed.
    The BARRY Moran move was something else.
    Dublin 4/7 and not 1/70 with Mayo at 15/8. COURTESY OF paddy power.

  29. Well well well all the people who said that we would loose will probably be at the semi . Tut tut tut . The following players were out standing . Lee keegan, Colm Boyle , Keith Higgins, Tom parsons who should be man of the match but credit where credit is due the two lads got it spot on in tactics and fair play to them for that . Maigh Eo Abu come on the yew.

  30. Eddie I think it’s a one match suspension regardless of time, but I thing it might be overturned on appeal.

    That was one fantastic performance by Mayo, and credit must go big time to Noel and Pat. They did their homework on Donegal, saw where the threats would come from and set up the team to deal with all eventualities. They more than anyone will have learned a lot from this match and no doubt it will give them a lot of confidence going forward.

  31. Well done Noel & Pat. Showed they have the tactical awareness necessary at this level. Dubs will present a completely different challenge but that’s for another day. 5 q final wins on a row, what a dedicated squad of players, such a pleasure to arrive in Croker knowing you’re guaranteed a performance. Bring on de overrated dubs!

  32. Firstly, delighted of course with the win but I think we were all quietly confident before today.

    Yes we did better defensively BUT Donegal have really struggled in attack this year and we will be facing an altogether tougher, faster and more clinical attack in 3 weeks time against the dubs.

    We snuffed the game out reasonably well but there were plenty of moments midway thru the 2nd half when we failed to score and dropped 3 into the keepers hands. We were quite wasteful at times.

    Let’s face it, Donegal were a spent force and we only scored 1-6 against them in the 2nd half. That’s not a huge score against an obviously jaded team.

    Good to win with areas to improve on. It was only a Quarter Final…lots of work to do yet.

    Keep the focus and the faith

    Up Mayo

  33. Great performance by the management and team in general.

    one worry would be COCs freetaking hopefully he can get it back to his old level

    Shows what can be achieved when a mgt team use there heads.can only think of what might have been last year

  34. Congrats firstly to the players who were once again brilliant – executed the plan and executed the skills and executed the scores – was really impressed with the no of foot passes this team is making – they look so much better when they play this way

    And Secondly congrats to Noel, Pat and the management team – you could say it was their first game against a proven championship team and they delivered in spades. This should give them great confidence for the next game and also the players probably now have the belief in them that they can deliver a winning plan no matter the opponent.

  35. What,s the story with Clarke?. I,d be a big Keane fan but can,t see the grounds to appeal that red card. Should have just asked Murphy what the score was.

  36. Willie Joe – why aren’t management team included in MOTM lists?

    They were superb today.

    More comments to follow!

  37. Brilliant performance by the lads – controlled and professional. Well done to Noel & Pat for their astute defensive plan – big Barry in the sweeper role worked a treat! It was an excellent team performance from start to finish. To beat Donegal by 8pts with Cillian having an off day says it all. The quality of the tackling and dispossessions were a thing of beauty – kids should be made watch the entire game in order to teach this skill. Balls dropping short is certainly something to be worked on for the semi-final – fortunately it didn’t come back to haunt us in the end. This performance against one of the AI contenders will have the entire squad buzzing in training and gunning for the Dubs in 3 weeks time. Up Mayo.

  38. What a horrible character Murphy is, trying to get a player sent off even though he knows the game is up. But what a larger fool Keane is to react, Murphy knew what he was doing and he knew who to go after.

    Not a good day for Ulster football with Murphy running after umpires and that Tyrone lad McCann diving against Monaghan, pathetic.

    On the suspension, if he has been sent off for a punch, but it was obviously a slap, he might get away with it. Hopefully, as he will be needed against the Dub’s, especially as Cunniffe may be missing.

    Sure it was a great win, our All-Ireland final to be sure, just go up for the semi to make up the numbers against the Dub’s and wish them well for the final, 😉

  39. As a long time reader and a rare commentator I am on hols with family with 4 season tickets in my pocket but thankfully got to watch the game in friendly company. I had predicted a6+ win for us and was confident that a new game plan would be unfolded. The level of maturity and game management they showed was magnificent and they never cease to astound us! Lady Luck will shine on them and it will be this year finally!people will say that donegal were tired but we controlled that game like no other mayo team had ever done and I like a few others always knew that there was always a plan b c and d being worked on behind the scenes! Credit also to gear donegal players( we may not like their style)who have given everything for their county, which is very similar to ours and they are wonderful people. These mayo players are ABSOLUTELY MAGNIFICENT.

  40. Willie Joe, has Tom P been top 3 in the MOTM poll for both matches so far? Well on course for a third if so 🙂

    What an addition he has been! Brilliant that we can afford to play Aido inside and not be weakened out the field

  41. Wonderful day for players, management and supporters alike. And small bits to improve on as well. Roll on the plan for Dublin.

    Here’s the injury news, courtesy of the 42.


    Davy Clarke picked up an injury when he was saving the goal shot in the first-half and he has an adductor injury we’re told,” revealed Mayo joint manager Noel Connelly after the game.
    “We don’t know how serious it is yet but that was the reason for the change at half-time. Tom tweaked his hamstring going for a ball to his feet.
    “He stumbled out over and just pinched his hamstring. Again I don’t know how serious that is, we’ll have to look at that over the next few days and see how it is.

  42. Well Keane wasn’t even first sub on so he hardly would have started v Dub anyway. Still he’ll probably win his appeal but while it’s a huge loss to himself with all due respect I don’t think we’re losing out as a result, Ger showed today why he is the better option when he’s on form in my view anyway. Outstanding performance on Murphy

    Will KH pick up Bernard? I thought Ger did a stellar job on him in the 2013 final, he couldn’t have done anything about the 2-2 which resulted from mistakes by other players. I can see Ger on Rock and Keith on Bernard however. Keith started 11 in 2013 and there’s no O’Gara threat this time. Will Andrews or McManaman get the nod the other side I wonder?

    The half forward line will take some watching, 3 top class players. MDMA will surely start mid. ROC is prob the best FB in Ireland. Very, very tough proposition- cannot wait though!

    Diarmuid will need to man mark Jack McCaffrey- Dub’s best player to date this year

  43. Well done to all, players, Pat ,Noel and Donie and the backroom boys and girls. I knew you’d do it .
    Great to concede NO goals.
    Now for the Dubs. They wont be too confident now.
    We can do it.
    Easier then if Tyrone in the final.
    Whoever foresaw that scenario?
    TA AR LA CAOSAICH.
    Mayo abu.

  44. Great win. Thought we got tactics spot on although we could have beaten them out the gate. Dubs will be huge battle but we have every chance

    Keegan and Doherty immense

  45. As PJ pointed out Ger caff had a great game on Murphy.
    Delighted for him.
    Seriously I still can’t figure out today’s formation. Hats off to Noel and Pat.
    To all you doubters well I guess you feel silly enough 😀

  46. Indeed Cod we honestly could have topped the 16 point massacre in the second half- who cares tho!!

    It’ll go unnoticed by many but one of our critical moments was Doherty’s point in the first half, imo. Pass was overhit but still found himself through on goal. Durcan came out so well, however most players would have tried round him, panic and shoot wide or hit straight at him. Instead he held it up, made an angle and took a very sensible point and at a crucial stage too, to pull a further point ahead. A missed goal there could have really buoyed them

    Another thing lets hope when our own Durcan finds himself in such space again he’ll nail the next one!! Can’t blame him as he was no doubt tense in his first real big game for Mayo but Christ my heart was in my mouth and he really should have put it to bed!

  47. Congrats our boys on an excellent performance. Dubs don’t seem too daunting, but as usual the closer we get to game time the more nervous I will get. Can’t vote on the MOTM as too many outstanding performances.
    One thing bugging me about today’s match was the free awarded to Donegal when Clarke handled the ball on the ground. Surely a goalkeeper should not be penalized for making a save. I think the powers that be should change this rule and allow the goalkeeper pick the ball off the ground anywhere in the large rectangle.

  48. No cute hoorism on this site I see. Donegal forwards are very poor. Murphy only class act left and he caused serious problems to mayo. Dublin have at least 3 or 4 of the same calibre to come….I don’t think they’ll be held. Mayo will win midfield though and o Shea will beat anyone but can’t do it all on his own. The defining battle will be how Dublin half back line is dealt with. Keegan excellent today. Goal a fluke though. Doherty very underrated…inckuding by mayoites from what I can see. McLaughlin hot and cold. Hot today…can he maintain. O Connor can’t be missing some frees he dis today. Looking forward to a great game but will aide with bookies on tho one….

  49. The tackling today was ferocious and we got a huge amount of turnover ball. Well done to pat and noel on the line. They got it spot on. Putting Barry Moran in was a great move and one that few if anyone anticipated. He did really well and I am delighted for himself and Caff in particular. Great confidence boost for both. The use of Barry as a defender and Tom Parsons as a top class midfielder really makes me wonder about last year in Limerick and why we didn’t deal with Donaghy properly!! Could it be that James Horan wasn’t the great manager people gave him credit for?
    The only real criticism I would have is that if your tactics and General play gets you 8 points ahead why not continue playing like that and stretch the lead even further instead of trying to protect the lead. It seems like common sense but then what do I know!
    Cillian had an off day when it came to getting scores but he put in a huge amount of work defending and covering. But then others stepped up to the challenge which is very encouraging.
    These boys are just as hungry for success as ever they were (and I am amazed at that ) but this time they are actually a better team in my humble opinion and will improve.
    You’d never know!!! Dare to dream…………

  50. Great game today,
    But lots of people here panicking about keane, id be more concerned about Vaughan if its true hes suspended, massive loss and joke of a rule. At the end of the day is really fair that a man who has worked as hard as Vaughan all year long without pay obviously is made miss out on one of the biggest games of his career over his tackle today is nothing short of a disgrace, there was no badness in it, probably just a poor tackle, i havent actually seen it since

  51. WJ, does the League count on terms of black cards? Because I don’t see where he was black carded in the Championship Please correct me if I’m wrong!

  52. That was a fantastic performance by the lads… Every time they broke forward you felt they were going to do damage! It was like watching Dublin or Kerry in the past except in reverse cos this time we were doing the dishing out rather than the receiving. The team is so well gelled it is just hard to take in!
    Also delighted for Barry Moran… He was a deadly trump card to play! Going to be away for the semis but can’t wait for the final… Really don’t want Tyrone to beat Kerry because we need to take our revenge 🙂 This is our year!

  53. Connelly’s Brigade – I’ll need to check that point re Donie and the black cards. I don’t think he got one in the championship (in fact, I’m now sure he didn’t) and I doubt if one picked up in League matches would carry over in the championship. I’ll look into it, but not right now!!

  54. It’s 3 x black card = a suspension

    Vaughan only got 2 all year surely? Did he get sent off any other game or anything?

  55. League does carry over into Championship WJ

    But it’s 3 black cards not 2.

    He got one v Donegal in league and today, don’t remember any others

  56. Don’t remember Vaughan being black carded against Galway or Sligo. Keanes red a sickener he should know better. Good win but I will have to see recording on tv before much judgement can be passed. From what I did gather at game Higgins Keegan, Parsons and JDoc excellent while Cillian well below par and room for improvement with some others. But that’s ideal scenario as we head for semi. Once again well done to these fantastic guys who represent our county with such distinction and also congrats to management who got an awful lot of things right today. Up Mayo

  57. Donie got a yellow followed by a black in league match against Donegal. Black today. i think that leaves him ok for dublin game? These suspensions do not apply to all ireland finals.

  58. Done Deal from that link I posted above I understand it makes no difference whether you got a yellow before the black or not

    Any 3 of:

    black card
    yellow followed by black
    2 yellows

    In any combination is a one match ban

    So unless Donie got a black card, 2 yellows, or yellow/black in another game (aside from today and v Donegal in the league) then he’s sound as a pound!

    It’s a valid point for WJ to make though, our lads just need to be very careful- particularly when the match is over!

  59. If worst came to worst he could appeal today’s black anyway and tbh I could see him getting off. But he’s sound

    Keane will be also, I think- common sense should prevail

  60. I know some people have said that Cillian is not performing as he used. This is not meaning to sound bad but he he having difficulty with AOS being the key man up front now? It would be nice to see them work off each other.

  61. Commentator said that if Vaughan got a black/2 yellows against Dublin, he would miss the final if we made it

  62. Spare a thought for one person tonight. Rory O’Carroll is lying in his bed with the thoughts of marking Aiden OShea in 21 days.

  63. I had high hopes for Gough being a fresh common sense ref but he leaned to them a good bit in my eyes.
    Massive kudos to Andy & Alan shooting on sight & keeping us healthily in front….Lee’s new return to accuracy is welcome ‘cos he had some amount of wides racked up & hopefully Patrick Durcans woes only surface V Donegal.
    Our set of backs would nearly need to be selected V Dubs based on speed & on that basis I’d leave Cunnife off & Keane too.I’d nearly go for Michael Hall but too big of debut for him…so Harrison?

  64. Disagree with some saying Cillian was quiet today. From play he contributed well(off day on dead balls). We should not expect him to be 50% of our attack, as in previous years! The work rate of all our player was second to none. even in the first phase we closed Donegal down like demons. It was our relentless workrate and power that made a good Donegal team look jaded in my opinion.

    No single player could be put above another today. If i was to single out anyone it would be management for finally putting some thought into closing out our defensive system a game(no drama needed). Great tactics to finally make use of a talented Barry Moran. Is there any midfield in the country that can match AOS, SOS, Parsons and Moran??

    On to the semi’s and i think both teams will be relishing the test. The Dubs bring a whole different level but i have faith in our boys. Win or lose they are a group of lads that will be talked about for decades to come. We could have 3 all Irelands in the back pocket if we had the tactics i watched today. Better team than Kerry last year but no plan to close out a tight game and it cost it cost us dearly..

    Well done Pat, Noel and the lads. Credit also to the undisputed best fans and traveling support in the land

    Im one of the immigrants in Oz that will not have the pleasure of seeing our team live this year but watching the games in the dead of night (3am) has its own merits. Quiet and undisturbed, no one to argue with only myself!(and it happens)

    Looking forward to a very tough semi final! Are the Dubs ready for us? Have the an answer for AOS??

    Hon Mayo!!

  65. Can’t sleep worrying about about Donies black card please tell me he can play against the Dubs! We need him was excellent again today ! Kevin should have gone down like a sack of spuds ! Can’t wait to watch it properly tomorrow some day some experience some team and some supporters we were brilliant today ! It fed into the team I’m convinced !!

  66. Vaughan can play against Dublin as its only two Black cards. It was for sure a black, Donie even knew it himself.
    The red will be appealed and I would say successfully. It’s not a close fist and the argument will be made that clearly Michael Murphy was the clear aggressor. The slap can be put down as freeing himself from grip.
    Gough actually was very soft on them. Swan dive by Murphy from a Keith Higgins tackle, McGlynn soft free, Lacy soft free, JDoc clearly held back goin up the pitch no free, Michael Murphy no yellow for second foul on Seamus OShea or for initiating incident with Keane.

  67. Well done to the lads.we kinda take days like this for granted now. I am old enough to remember that getting to croke park was a dream . This team makes me proud to be a mayo supporter and well worth all the miles to follow them.game 4 awaits!

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