Monday match reports

Photo: Sunday World

It was tough going in difficult conditions for a good while against Leitrim at Carrick-on-Shannon yesterday. But we eventually got the job done, setting up a Connacht semi-final meeting with defending provincial champions Rosommon at Dr Hyde Park next Sunday.

Here’s the media coverage that’s online about our win yesterday.

Locals: Mayo News, Mayo Advertiser, Connaught Telegraph, Western People, Midwest Radio (post-match audio of James Horan), Leitrim Observer.

Nationals: Irish Times, Irish Examiner, Irish Independent, Irish Sun, Irish Mirror (live blog), Sunday World.

Others: GAA, RTÉ, The 42, World News.

Photos: Sportsfile, Inpho.

There’s also some coverage of the big Rackard Cup win the county’s hurlers recorded over Tyrone on Saturday. Here’s what’s online on that one:

Match reports: Mayo Advertiser (match report, post-match reaction from Derek Walsh), Team Talk Mag.

Photos: Memories thru a lens.

The draw for next weekend’s Round 2B fixtures in the Rackard Cup were made last night, by the way, the upshot of which is that we’re set to face the winners of the Longford/Leitrim game in the semi-final the weekend after that.

In case you missed it, our match review episode of the Mayo News football podcast went online early this morning following another late night by Rob in the editing suite. You’ll find it on all the usual podcast platforms, including SoundCloud – here.

That’s your lot for now. Don’t forget that the MOTM poll from yesterday’s game is still open, so if you haven’t yet cast your vote in it there’s still time to do so. Back this evening with the results of the poll.

34 thoughts on “Monday match reports

  1. It was literally like playing in a bog in parts of that pitch yesterday. Very difficult to take anything from it except the excellence of our full forward line.
    It is difficult to know if this young Mayo team have yet got the physicality and strength around the middle of pitch for winter football on slow surfaces. We will be at the mercy of the weather over the next 2 weeks. Though, if we do get to Croke Park, it could be a different story. This team is being prepared for Croke Park shootouts. The problem might be getting there.

  2. How can we stop the gaps in the centre of our defence when our full back and centre back are gone up past half way at every chance they get. There has to be gaps left behind then.
    The full back should not pass the 45 meter line – unless following his player. Similarly the centre back should be told to hold his position and not go forward.
    We have enough good forwards now that can score – no need for the spine of our defence going up there blocking the thing up

  3. @Southmayo Exile
    Anecdotally I believe our defenders have a much lower scoring % than our attackers over the last 3 games. I just have more memory of defenders getting forward and kicking wides, to goalie or goalie saving.
    I agree, I don’t see the sense of going past the opposition 45 at least when we have a good attack this year.

  4. Mmm, I think the likes of Mullin and MacLaughlin bombing forward (sensibly) are what can open up defences and leave the gaps for lays off, which make the forwards job that much easier. Keegan and Durcan do that too of course. Still, JP, referring to your previous post on the match report, I too was thinking of Donie Vaughan a lot yesterday. Those guys’ days are not over; they have given mighty service and they are still committing. Don’t count them out.

  5. Just a word on Cillian again….

    We do take him for granted sometimes (have been guilty of it myself)
    Its a reminder to all the new lads breaking through and trying to put their hand up, that is the standard of excellence you need to show to get to the very top.
    You wouldnt think he was an established decorated player the way he played yesterday, he played like a man with everything to prove, busting his b0llix all game, winning dirty turnovers and tackling like a demon in the 70th minute after scoring 1-9.
    Its not enough just to get into the squad, you must hit that standard of ruthlessness to make it at the very top.

    Few other thoughts…
    I have serious concerns about midfield, its suddenly become a real problem position for us. Horan clearly doesnt fancy Parsons there and loftus is more of a forward, late in the day to be performing surgery on that position though.

    Strangely, our achilles heel from the past decade (our full forward line) nows seems to be our strongest line on the pitch with Carr back. Picking any 3 from Cillian/AOS/Coen/Carr/Conroy leaves us very well equipped in that department

    I want to bring Keegan further out the pitch, would task him with following Enda Smith out the pitch next week

    Still have massive reservations about our goalkeeper and the lack of variety in his kicking, was looking on enviously at Patton/Morgan/Galligan over the weekend who all gave kicking exhibilitions in extreme weather. Its such an important position these days, basically a playmakers role

  6. we had better protect our goal make no mistake about it they are going to go after goals. They put 2 on us last year and 3 on Armagh the last day

  7. Rejuvenated performance by COC and set the standard for other forwards.
    We started very slowly and nervously. Stood off the leitrem forwards too much. Need to be much brighter from the throw in v the rossies as it will not be as easy to claw our way back.
    AOS has to stay at ff in my opinion as he gives a focal point to our attack. Many of our scores are coming from his clever distribution.
    That leaves mid field. Chris Barrett back into defence and release Keegan. Jason Flynn has definite potential around that area.
    One game at a time, the more championship games we can get the better, but we have to be realistic.
    Its a pity Leitrem dont get into another more acchievable Championship grade after defeat to help them progress.

  8. Against Roscommon I’d bring Keegan to midfield and replace him in the backs with Eoin o Donoghue. I’d also move Barrett back to 6 and move Coen to 3 that would shore up the defence and midfield. Leave Aidan an 14 but a place has to be found for Diarmuid so I’d drop Jordan Flynn and obviously Conor Loftus for Leeroy

  9. Anyone know what the story is with Eoin odonoghue? Haven’t seen him for a while.

  10. Is Eoin o Donoghue on the panel ? I’ve not noticed him on match day squads . Is Keith Higgins around ? Seems all very top secret , which is fine too but makes it very hard to speculate on match day panel for the next .

    I don’t think we could possibly get over Roscommon playing the same method of last three games , ie Loftus and Ruane in the Middle , lee in the corner and such an attack minded defensive unit , Boyle or Vaughan will have to come in and we will need some form of sweeper system in a game management strategy otherwise enda smith will just break the line and let it into cox and Murtagh and it’s goodnight .

  11. @Backdoorsam

    I like your thinking, i very much see the reshuffle going that way. ie diarmuid to come in ahead of loftus at mf, leeroy to come out the field and tag enda smith like he did in ’17

    coen will surel pick up conor cox with probably oisin mullen on diarmuid murtagh

    i too am a fan of EOD but dont think horan shares our view, if he hasnt seen any minutes in last 3 games he is hardly likely to feature on sunday

  12. Agree we need to mind our goal. Our defence overall needs to be more tenacious but clever too in terms of positioning. We looked at sea at times yesterday against, let’s be honest, a very limited team.

  13. How do all? All ready for Sunday? Could be a cracker. Hard to know what will happen, we could win but with Ros you just don’t know and we could fold again, I would like to think not and that Cunningham has added a bit of mental steel to them.

    Just for the comments I see on the match ups and who will mark who, I have seen Diarmuid Murtagh mentioned a couple times, would be a huge surprise if he makes the first 15, Ciaran would probably have a better chance of starting and that is even doubtful. Both Murtaghs and Donie Smith will probably be subs.

    Obviously a big threat to us is AOS at the edge of the square but if we can cut off the good quality ball going in there that is half the battle. I would be very disappointed if Ros don’t target your kickout, I think this is one area we can get at you.

  14. Here’s the plan…….

    Mullin, Barrett, O’Hora
    Durcan, Keegan , McLaughlin
    Coen, Ruane
    D.O’Connor, Loftus, McDonagh
    Conroy, A.O’Shea, C.O’Connor

    Roscommon are going to employ at least one sweeper, maybe two. By them using a sweeper they will, in effect give us a sweeper because they will end up with 5 forwards at most, they may even drop to four, with two inside forwards (most likely Cox and Murtagh) and two hanging around our half back line (most likely Cregg and Kilroy). We need to get our match-ups spot on, with Plans B & C for the inevitable black and yellow cards that will follow. I would detail Barrett on Cox, with O’Hora picking up their next most dangerous forward. Then I’d have Keegan and Durcan holding solid on our half back line picking up their two half forwards. I would have Mullin sweeping up in front of our full back line and playing quick ball out to our half back line/midfield. The ball from our backs will have to move at speed to get in behind the retreating Rossies, otherwise they will drop numbers and crowd out the space our attackers need. I would ask McLaughlin to hug the left hand side sideline, keeping the full width of the pitch will spread the Rossie cover, and he has the legs and engine to bomb up and down the wing all day.
    Coen would be detailed to mess and slobber and spoil around the middle and slow down ball coming through on the counter attack. In fact, I would make sure he always has Ruane in front of him and Coen is never to get ahead of the ball. Ruane is the creator but he MUST move the ball quicker and stop bringing it into contact. If he does that on Sunday he will be playing straight into the Rossie trap.
    Loftus’ main job is to be available for ball coming through our defense/midfield, get on it and play quick, accurate footpasses to our inside line. He can also strike over from distance. McDonagh and O’Connor to drop to midfield if they go long on their kickouts and then charge in diagonally to support the full forward line when ball is played in. Both have a good boot on them too so they can strike from distance also.
    That set-up allows us to keep the 3 lads inside the full forward line (if we feed them with enough ball we will win). That in turn will hold 4 Rossies back there to mind the house leaving only 10 outfield players to contend with, against our 11.
    Fast, accurate movement of the ball by us from back to front is key to winning this game. The way to beat the counter-attack is to counter-attack against it and that requires discipline, experience and patience. If we engage them by trying to run through them we are only playing into their hands. Use the brain and the ball and we will win this one.

  15. By God Pebbles, that’s some game plan! Are you giving Horan and Mac coaching lessons in your spare time?

  16. Great analysis, I would make 1 change, kevin Mc instead of Mc donagh if he is fit, and have Carr Moran and mc donagh to come on

  17. A lot looking for Connor Loftus to be be dropped but he has linked better than mattie ruane who has not played well for a while now so l would drop m ruane if anyone

  18. The Rossies are a ultra defensive team, don’t have players or courage to go all out attack and rely on the break.
    In fairness I was in Croker for their last appearance v the Dubs in the championship, if Mayo are worried about this challenge then maybe it’s time to opt out now altogether.

  19. Think there’ll be three changes for Sunday. Barrett, DOC, and Kevin mcloughlin in for plunket, Walsh and flynn/O’Donoghue. I don’t think O’Donoghue deserves to be dropped but flynn might be preferred for his physicality and O’Donoghue has shown he can make an impact off the bench. Barrett to go into the fullback line, Keegan I think will probably mark enda smith.

  20. Was great to see James Carr out on the pitch again. Looked pretty sharp too – was even a bit greedy once or twice. As was Leeroy who got an earful from Aido when he shot for goal with O’Shea standing inside on his own.

  21. Defensive plans are great but they need months to work on and perfect
    Unfortunately we will be dodgy in defence . Keegan to 6. Aiden to midfield. Cillian at 11. O shea does his best work as deep lying midfielder so that would help our chb

  22. People need to forget about sweepers, it isnt going to happen under Horan. He has never really played with a sweeper and isnt going to start now especially in a Connacht Semi Final, I doubt he actually knows how to set up a team to play with one properly. There will be a couple of specific man marking jobs (Keegan – Smith) but the defence will operate like a Horan defence has for the past 10 years, man on man without the ball and gung-ho attack from all angles with it. Its great when it works but will always leave space in behind which has been exploited in the past. Difference this year is we might actually have a forward unit capable of scoring enough to counter this deficiency.

  23. When Colm Boyle got back into the team last year after we lost to Roscommon, he did a lot of sweeping in front of the full back line. However, I get the impression it was just his natural style of play rather than an instruction from Horan.

  24. @Mayo88 judging a team on how they fared against Dublin is very flawed. The Dubs on their day can blow any team away as Mayo themselves seen in the 2nd half of the All-Ireland semi final. Roscommon look to keep things but aren’t a ultra defensive team and in their last championship game they beat Cork away last summer.

    Sunday will be a 50/50 the winner will go on to beating Galway in the Connacht final IMO.

  25. Yes M02020, but Mayo were out on their feet v the Dubs last year, too many games in close succession, only 6 days to prepare after the Donegal game last year and many qualifiers games before that, the Meath game was tricky also in Croker 1 week prior to the Donegal match, the Dubs had about 3 weeks of a lay off.
    The Rossies v the Dubs was terrible, I was in Croker that day, much worse than Galway v the Dubs 2 years ago.
    No bottle just threw in the towel after 15 minutes.

  26. I agree @TM1969 loftus has bulked up this year.His link play and kick passing is on song.
    Also he popping up with a few scores.
    Aidan needs to be in full forward to keep mullooly busy.centre back will be the key,who goes there?Keegan is needed to follow Smith,
    Seamus or Vaughan would be my choice if available.eoghan mclauglin is doing ok but his tackling is letting him down.

  27. @Mayo88 don’t buy that excuse, the more games Mayo play in a short space the better they get. The Dubs simply switched on the afterburners and was no answer to them.

    The Dubs had the game won against the rossies after 15 minutes another reason not to read much into either as that’s highly unlikely to happen in a windy and wet Hyde Park this Sunday.

  28. Agree All41, he has bulked up and is not easily dispossessed. My guess is that MacDonald, his club man, has figured out how to maximise his talents. Can catch ball too. However, he is unlikely to be out fielding David Moran say.

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