Monday’s coverage

I know this one is coming hot on the heels of someone posting in the comments that we should block everything out between now and Sunday but, hey, each to their own and all that. Feel free to either gorge or pass up on this lot.

Let’s start with the GAA’s website, which has an interesting interview by Cian O’Connell with Tom Parsons – here.  In it the Charlestown man talks about the long and winding road of his inter-county career and how the support of those around him has been of crucial importance to him. Worth a read.

The same source has a piece by John Harrington with Dublin selector Declan Darcy (here) and the same writer also has a bluffer’s guide piece on different aspects to the final (here).

Over on the RTÉ website, meanwhile, there are interview pieces with Stephen Rochford and Jim Gavin. Both men play these ones with a straight bat.

Also on the RTÉ site Peter Sweeney crunches some numbers on us, in which he highlights the interesting point that no county has ever played as many matches in two consecutive championship years as we have this year and last. That number – ahead of Sunday – stands at 18.

The same piece also states that just two players have started every single one of those matches for us. Who are they? No peeking now – see if you can guess them first.

There’s not a whole pile in the nationals so far, not online at any rate. There are versions of that feature with Tom Parsons in the Irish Independent (here), Irish Times (here) and Irish Examiner (here). The Indo has another look-at-me-now Eamonn Sweeney piece but, really, the less said about that particular amadán the better.

The Irish Times also carries a feature by Malachy Clerkin, which some of you have already mentioned and where he says that the key thing for us will be to take the chances that will inevitably come our way on Sunday. A simple observation, perhaps, but an accurate one all the same.

That’s your lot for now. Don’t despair, though – the next episode of the Mayo News football podcast, featuring the second part of last week’s Camden escapade, will be online later on this evening. Then tomorrow the same paper’s All-Ireland final supplement will hit the streets and once again I was honoured to have been asked to provide a piece for it, which I gladly did. Sure, it’s an annual event at this stage.

Still hunting for that golden ticket? Another ten tickets are up for grabs in Wednesday’s Mayo GAA Lotto – play here.  

25 thoughts on “Monday’s coverage

  1. WJ – I think I’m correct when I state that in terms of documented records for the senior football championship we have played more minutes of football than any other team in history (namely Tyrone 2005) in qualifying for this AI final. Is that your understanding also? Tyrone also played 10 games but not two periods of extra-time?

  2. I’m gorging, I’m going to enjoy this week and weekend last year I enjoyed every bit of the build up and nearly drank RTÉ dry out of wine and beer on up for the match the night before the drawn game and still had plenty voice left to roar the lads on We didn’t win Sam but I had great memories to look back on which sustained me nicely through the winter and on to the FBD where I was raring to go again

  3. Its all gotten very real today in Castlebar with Main st ramping up the red and green decor…A brilliant “Back to the future “billboard with Aidan and Andy as Doc and Marty Mc Fly for good measure..Its gonna be a long week!!

  4. Silly me, just read the link. Seirious consistency from Cillian and McLoughlin…hopefully they’ll be rewarded Sunday evening.

  5. With Corduff’s bus coming in the N5 this evening week we will share the experience of a lifetime. I am sure of it. Till then, over and out.

  6. After the horrific accident in Claremorris today – I hope everyone realises that what is happening next Sunday is sport – not life and death. These are the best days every to be a Mayo supporter. Younger supporters might not realise this but us older supporters certainly do. So many great days out. If you have a ticket for Sunday – support the team to the end. But please no booing of Dublin players or freetakers. I would hope we wouldn’t stoop as low as the Dublin supporters who boo opposition players in a regular basis – we should be above this.

  7. As the son of a Swinford native and being a Galway hurling man, I am only beginning to sober up around now after finally seeing my county get over the line last Sunday week. It’s been a long time coming and the celebrations have reflected that. God only knows what the county of Mayo would be like if ye win on Sunday. Needless to say I sincerely hope ye do it.

    For what it’s worth, I am utterly convinced that Mayo are going to win this on Sunday. A bit like our hurlers all year, there is something a bit different about Mayo this year imo (well certainly since the replay against the sheepsteelers anyway). Mayo are a good bit improved from the team that went so close last year. Ye know have more viable scoring options. Mayo also have the ability to mix up a short game and long kick passing game. Ye have exposed both aspects of the game very well in the last three games.

    Have Dublin improved this year? In my opinion, that’s very debatable. McCaffery is an undoubted asset to have back. I’m definitely still not sold on young O’Callaghan yet. Yes he looks a good player in the making. But our own u21 full back kept him largely in check back in April.

    Dublin of 2017 remind me a lot of the Kilkenny hurling team of a decade ago. Everybody is guffawing in their praise of this Dublin team, and no doubt they are a fine team. But absolutely nobody has had a go at them since Kerry in the league final. A lot of commentators were saying Dublin weren’t that bothered by the league this year. I was at the final, and I can tell you that they were going hell for leather at it. Monaghan and Tyrone were embarrassingly bad against Dublin and neither side believed for one moment that could beat Dublin. Like Kilkenny, Dublin would want to be having some epic A vs B games in training to get them match sharp, as nobody has laid a hand on them. The complete opposite to Mayo this summer.

    I believe that the Mayo back division are more than capable of shutting down this much vaunted Dublin forward line. And their will be no need for double sweepers or any of that craic. Ye defended very well against them last year. Now ye have a more proficient forward line to hurt the Dubs. I also think that ye are unlikely to score two own goals for them this year!

    It was telling that when Waterford took the lead against us at one point, David Burke was supposed to have said to any colleague within earshot “not fu*kin today”. There only comes so many times that us western folk can go up to Croke Park and take our batins. Enough is enough. I’m convinced that ye will land Sam Maguire and complete a very famous Connacht double in 2017.

    Go neari leat

  8. You’re right about that South Mayo Exile. Really is chilling to read that three generations of a family suffer in one horrendous accident.

    Always sounds glib but has to put certain things in perspective.

  9. I think we’re spoiled on this blog with all the information and links. If your from Mayo it’s the only place to be this week. Fair does to yea WJ. Great reading info and banter to keep us natives happy.

    Keep them smiling Wolfie 🙂

    Thanks Leantimes and all from previous threads. I’ll try and update later in the week some more of the happenings from the Dublin camp.

    O’shea said last night that Mayo have a great chance and that Dublin might win by 3 or 4. I was so confused I nearly got in to the bath instead of the bed. He’s pretty well spot on now no matter how it goes.

    Both said they would not push up on Cluxton from the get go. O’shea said it would cost too much in terms of energy used. I would agree that it’s not sustainable for the full match, but maybe an early rattle might disturb them for a good part of the game.

    Think Stephen Rochford will have everything covered. He’s young and last year was his rookie year. Think beating kerry was a huge stepping stone for him. I’m very confident that he will have a game plan that is really going to test this dublin team.

    There is more belief in the team this year. I think they really trust and respect stephen.

    It would feel so good to strut around as all ireland champions for 12 months.

    Life would be close to perfect.

    Keep the dream alive.

  10. Finger on the pulse, South Mayo, and sorry to hear the sad news. Like Galway hurlers last Sunday – Mayo will carry the best wishes of Connaught people into this final. And like Galway hurlers I’m sure the mantra is going to be.. “this is not happening today – not this time…” So what is different this year for Mayo? For one, Stephen has put his stamp on the gameplan, and the forward division is playing as a genuine unit, and all contributing handsomely to the score sheet. There is now a confidence to their play, and they realise they will take some beating. After losing last year, I recall seeing Paul O’Connell on the Late Late – promoting his book, I think. He brought up the subject of Mayo, and was adamant that their day would come. He experienced heartbreak himself, but said that eventually you get it together, you learn how to win, and on the big day, you just blow the opposition away through sheer desire. So, I honestly feel that this new improved confidence allied to the players undoubted metal and perseverance will see Mayo over the line.. Hope Castlebar puts up a big screen for supporters who are not lucky enough to get tickets, and I fully expect to be up for the homecoming..

  11. Revellino – We do need to rattle Cluxton early. As we know he’s a big key to their success. I suggest we use the low energy Diarmuid press at every opportunity! Btw, thanks for all the humor.

  12. Nice post a year til Sunday. As a mayo man living in Galway myself I was at the fundraiser in Athenry for Tony Keady with my son to see the triumphant Galway hurlers take on the might of the 87/88 team. I couldn’t help but dream of us being in that position too. What struck me was the genuine desire from every Galwegian that I met there for us to go on and emulate Galway. One fella joked that if we won and decided to take on what was left of the 1951 team in a fundraiser we would still get it tight!!!

  13. Willie joe I like this blog for many reasons particularly for the many diverse but very knowledgeable comments of most posters. For mayo natives like me living outside the county the blog makes me feel optimistic about our team. We have got this far this year playing poorly in some of our games. Our lads are great battlers to say the least. All we need now is a little luck on Sunday. I’m really looking forward to a memorable day. Mayo Abu

  14. The more I analyse this forthcoming match the more I am convinced we will win. Mayo have learned so much about themselves as a unit this year. Paul Galvin had a very good piece in The Sunday Times, his point was that Mayo have had 9 matches to fix any issues, when Dublin fail on Sunday they only have that game to try fix multiple issues. They won’t.

    Mayo by 2.

  15. I’m not sure any luck is needed or even Dublin playing badly for that matter.
    If you look at both teams and look for any weakness. Well I think Dublins defence can be out muscled by this Mayo team. It will take a while. But when the likes of Mccarthy, Small, OSullivan and McMahon have picked up a few yellows (confident of two in that four) I expect us to run very aggressively with Keith Higgins, Lee Keegan, Tom Parsons, Donal Vaughan, Aidan OShea, Colm Boyle and Diarmuid OConnor.

  16. Napolean was once quoted “You must not fight too often with one enemy, or you will teach him all your art of war” . Hopefully we’ve learnt enough from close combat with Dublin over the last few years to be cute enough to just go and finish this thing ! Glad the build up has been much less factious this year and to be honest I’m more confident than I’ve ever been before recent finals. Really don’t buy what the Dublin based media is selling and think we can really get one over.
    As an aside just to say thanks WJ for this great site, we’d be lost without it !!

  17. Hi, Nothing original here but i too am very hopeful. The Video from WJ yesterday on ‘Dublin Details’ is an eyeopener.
    Am still basking in the win over Kerry. So so so significant
    It seems a long time now since the condemnation of the playet’s revolt and the then there wad a long period before SR’s appointment and wondering if we could survive Division 1. This must have been a very trying team for the team. We were all screaming for changes to fix things. The first Galway loss intensified this. The end.
    Struggled to the All Ireland. Survived Div 1again.I am more than hopeful that they all learned from the Dublin match last year. The Loser learns more, i think.

    I stilli recall the horror of Aidan being isolated the year before that and it is fascinating to ponder where and what his role is next Sunday. This team has a goal hungry look like the under 21’s of last yearr. I have seen Buckley overseing forward drills some years ago and he is more than a defensive coach. He provided a continuity since the JH era. Everyone brought something and one can be justifibly optimistic.
    Jim Gavin has described it as a massive, massive challenge for Dublin.

    Have had enough excitement this year and was very animated at the Kerry match but in dazed state in Limerick. I am more than happy to watch on TV but have considered the Big Screen on the Mall in the Hometown.
    All good wishes, Ciaran 2.

  18. I hear Dublin are delving deep into their black arts cook book to slow down our launching pad half back line
    Joe mcquillan should be forewarned to watch closely any time a mayo player falls to the ground entangled in a dubs player. The dub will keep holding onto his jersey for as long as he can to stop him getting up. I know we mm at gain an extra few yards if mcquillen spots it. But he should also brandish plenty of yellow cards to stop this ugly dublin ploy.
    Watch closely and you will see plenty of these dublin tricks to slow down mayo on Sunday

  19. It’s not today nor yesterday that they reached for that card, John, as the video I posted from last year’s drawn All-Ireland final showed. It’s a tactic we definitely need to be ready for.

  20. John, we could do with having a squint at that auld book of black arts ourselves to stop their backs from bombing forward.
    Of all the things we do on Sunday probably the single most important thing we can do is disrupt their smooth passing flowing style’ – i.e. the fast offload to a fast runner who in turn does the same until an opening appears. Disrupt this successfully and we win – simple as. It’s hard work but we do need to go man to man aggressively when they have the ball and cut down their passing options dramatically.
    Some of the Tyrone lads commented in the days after their match with Dublin that they were overwhelmed at the speed and relentless nature of dublins running. “We couldn’t lay a hand on them was one comment”.
    I think Dublin do this deliberately early in the game to demoralise opponents. Get them thinking “Jesus I can’t keep this up for the entire game – we’re fcuked!” Then they hammer in a goal and you are fcuked! But “keep this up” is exactly what we have to do – run just as hard and just as relentlessly as them because the truth is that they cannot keep it up for 75 minutes either. It’s then a question of who blinks first? We more or less did it last year. No reason why we cannot repeat the dose this year except with a touch more venom.
    One thing is for sure Dublin are very good when things are going their way. I wonder just how good are they on the back foot? Let’s find out is what I say!

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