New faces to the fore in FBD win over NUIG

Mayo v NUIG 2014 FBD

Photo: Mayo GAA

Mayo came up trumps on their return to the football field this evening when they outgunned NUIG by three points on a scoreline of 0-12 to 1-06.

The cold weather did not keep the Mayo faithful away as the sides played in front of a crowd of almost 2,000, further proof that the men in red and green have one of, if not the, best supporter bases in the country.

James Horan brought in a raft of new faces to the side with the likes of Eoin Reilly, Tom King, Diarmuid O’Connor and Adam Gallagher getting their first run outs in a Mayo senior jersey.

The match itself took some time to get going with Mayo full-forward Darren Coen scoring the opening point of the game from a free after 10 minutes. This followed a period where Mayo could have put the ball in the students’ net on two occasions only for some fantastic last ditch defending.

NUIG had the better of the play in the opening half but it was Mayo who were creating more chances, though that old failing of not being able to take these chances was cropping up once again. However, with it being January we won’t hold it against them.

Mayo were creating goal chances, however, and could have had the ball in the net just before half time only for a brilliant save from the NUIG goalkeeper to keep Diarmuid O’Connor’s shot at bay.

The second half was much like the first, slow and laboursome as neither side seemed to be able to gather any sort of momentum and take control of the game.

Mayo pushed themselves four points clear with a few minutes to go and this seemed like it would be more than enough for victory considering the poor shooting on display from both sides.

But a goal from the students really put a cat amongst the pigeons with five minutes to go as it left the scores at 1-6 to 0-9.

But the Galway-based side were unable to get any closer as senior players like Colm Boyle and Andy Moran kept control of the ball for Mayo and the scoreboard ticked over twice more to leave the final score 0-12 to 1-6.

The new faces on the Mayo team today performed relatively well with the likes of Shane McHale as well as Tom King and Eoin Reilly showing good form for this time of the year, unsurprising considering Castlebar are in the middle of serious training for their club semi-final.

James Horan and Peter Burke

Photo: Mayo GAA

The fact that Mayo were unable to punish the huge amount of turnovers they received and could not take any of the six goal chances created will be something for James Horan to think about. But considering the team have not met up for a single group training session since last September should put some perspective on the performance.

Overall an enjoyable evening in Castlebar and it was good to see the new faces on show. Sunday should offer us a further glimpse at some of the bright prospects coming through.

Mayo: Robert Hennelly (0-2, ’45s); Keith Rogers (0-1), Kevin Keane, Eoghan Reilly; Brendan Harrison (0-1), Shane McHale, David Drake; Jason Gibbons, John Reilly; Adam Gallagher, Cathal Freeman, Diarmuid O’Connor; Tom King (0-1), Darren Coen (0-5, three frees), Mikie Sweeney (0-1). Subs: Stephen Coen for Harrison, Brian Gallagher for O’Connor, Andy Moran for Sweeney, Sean Kelly for Gallagher, Colm Boyle for Keane, Michael Conroy (0-1) for Kelly (black card).

48 thoughts on “New faces to the fore in FBD win over NUIG

  1. Credit to the supporters who turned up, 2000 in early january is a great number. Great to see Andy havin a run out…his speed is only goin to improve with a solid fbd/allianz campaign behind him. Well done to all involved tonight, hon mayo.

  2. A satisfactory enough outing for a cold start and a team which had only one starter from Sept last. However I thought it was a poor enough NUIG side. The amount of blocks Mayo defenders got in was near enough a record, esp. in the first half and with a little more luck the margin could have been much greater. However I did not think that either Tom King or Mikie Sweeney did enough to suggest that they will upset the full forward line pecking order.With a bit more accuracy Darren Coen can be a real contributor. Kevin Keane I though was quite sharp and looked like a man who wanted to put last year well behind him. I was surprised that both Diarmuid O;Connor and Adam Gallagher played most of the game considering they have what will probably be a tight enough game tomorrow and players like Brian Gallagher had to wait until late on to get a start. It must have been sheer boredom which caused Rob Hennelly to come off his line in the prelude to the NUIG goal. It did however remind me of his coming off the line for Dublin’s first goal in the All Ireland.

  3. Well, we have done cold turkey and the new season is here at last. It was great to get out on a cold sharp evening in what must have been one of the biggest attendances for a FBD match in a long time. Horan was true to his word when he said that a raft of new faces would be used and I have to say that, while some performed better than others, they all deserve at least another run out and did their chances no harm. In fact, it was the new lads that fared best this evening with Harrison, Adam Gallagher and Brian Gallagher particularly impressing.
    Harrison is a cool headed, clean tackling, tenacious defender that the Galway lads just could not shake off. He performed well, turned over Galway ball 3 or 4 times, was always available for the ball and tacked over a point after one of the best moves of the game. If that lad is minded and encouraged along he is a serious contender for the half back line over the next 2 years.
    Adam Gallagher is a wonderful prospect. A real natural forward that played all night with his head up. On one occasion early in the second half, he dodged and weaved his way through 3 or 4 defenders and, after almost losing possession, still had the coolness and vision to get his head up and play a very good left footed pass to a free man 30 yards away. It is only January and he is young but it is a long time since I have been that impressed by a young Mayo forward. Like Harrison, definitely one for the future.
    Brian Gallagher displayed in his 15 minute appearance that all the excitement is justified. An unusual upright running style looks like he is about to lose possession but, like his namesake, his head is up all the time looking for options. Looks like a confident lad too.
    2 efforts off the upright, King narrowly missed 1 goal effort, their keeper made 2 brilliant goal denying saves and 9 or 10 wides shows that we created enough but as a result of some poor shot selection and rushed efforts we didn’t do more damage to the score board.

  4. Andy D, my thoughts exactly on Rob for the goal, almost a carbon copy of last September and again he had enough defenders in front of him to deal with it. If you come off your line you have to make sure you clear the ball well away, otherwise, stay put. 2 nice 45’s though.
    Darren Coen, when he steadied himself, showed that he may certainly offer the squad something. I thought he was way too rushed in the first half and was deciding to shoot before he even received the ball! 2 bad wides and failing to play in another better placed forward, when he took on a shot from a tight angle, were areas he needs to work on. however, his ability shone through when he kicked the best point of the second half.
    The 2 Drakes did well and 22 had a good battle with the big no.14 Moran (a fabulous player and one of the best on display) who played most of the game at right half forward. King offered real pace, and although he lost the ball on a couple of occasions and may be a little light, his pace and balance are something we don’t really have in the forward division. I imagine nearer to goal he would pose a real threat. Things didn’t really go Sweeneys way but he fired over a very confident point and, like King, I would certainly give both another run out.

  5. “The 2 Drakes did well and 22 had a good battle” Jesus, what am I on?? I meant Keith Rodgers did well and Drake had a good battle….
    Your job is safe Mike Kelly 🙂

  6. I was starting to wonder there Pebblesmeller 😀

    I was impressed by Harrison too – thought he put in a solid confident performance in conditions that weren’t the best. And Gallagher is definitely one to watch.

    Strongly agree that I’d like to see them all get another run-out or two the first game in Jan having not trained together as a panel will never be pretty (and it showed) and I’d like to see them giving it another shot or two to see them get more comfortable. It’s bloody great seeing some fresh new faces.

    Great to see Mikie Sweeney on the panel and I really want him to do well but I wasn’t blown away tonight. King was unlucky a couple of times but made a couple of poor decisions on the ball in front of the posts which cost him.

    All in all, as Mike says a grand positive start to the year, and what a crowd! Missed the first 23 mins due to being stuck outside in a queue … For an FBD game!! hope they’re a bit more prepared in Charlestown 🙂 …

  7. Nice reporting there chief. It’s nice to see new lads getting a chance to show what they can do, maybe there’s one or two of them that will become key men for Mayo.
    Well done to 2000 fans going to see this game, gluttons for Mayo! Great to see it.

  8. Thanks for the reports lads, excellent stuff. I think the size of the crowd on a cold January evening, for a lowly FBD fixture speaks volumes of the appetite the county has for more football! Maybe its to early to worry about the shooting percentage, but we always say that it will improve as the year goes on, yet it’s kills us time and time again. It’s great to be talking real football again though!

  9. Lads do you think after this Fbd cup it will let James be anymore the wiser? Im not so sure he will.The league will be tester for the lads and Horans experiments playing against Dublin Kerry etc.But i suppose Horan has to start somewhere.It will be interesting how many new lads will be kept come the championship.he might make two or three changes from last years championship.any thoughts?

  10. As I mentioned in a previous post, the national league will be a better barometer for the emergence of new talent. Would expect some of the stand out players from the fbd games to get their opportunities to shine in the national league and push for a starting position come summertime.

  11. A poor enough game. Mayo forwards got a lot of ball and were easily pushed aside;
    They were fast and nippy but when it came to take a shot from out the field they had to give that extra pass and got caught out, We went for goals and if we took our points we should have won by at least 10, Looking at the team the players like Keane, McHale, Gibbons,, showed the way. Gibbons got a lot of ball and gave in some of the best foot passes I have seen. Keane was solid and really showed passion. Coen in the forward line should have at least scored 10 points, but still played well. A win is a win. Again credit to the Mayo faithful for the great support. Pity about the delay at entry before match, Again failed to have all entries open and a pile up.

  12. Yeah, it was widely reported during the week that the game was scheduled for a 7:30pm throw in. Although the county board tweeted the 7pm start it was late in the day when they did.
    Another open turnstile or 2 would have helped also.
    Still, who would have thought last October amidst all the doom and gloom of another final defeat that such a crowd would have been queuing to get into a FBD game on a freezing January evening. As was said above, gluttons we are!

  13. Hard Luck, you are spot on about Gibbons and his distribution into the forwards. Maybe defensively and from the point of winning clean possession around the middle he wasn’t too dominant but certainly from an attacking point of view he was very good, especially in the second half. Accurate perfectly weighted foot passes over 30 or 40m in front of our forwards made it easy for them. Bouncing 10m in front of them and straight into their midriff. Worth a run out at centre half forward maybe?

  14. Nice to start the new year off with a win and to see new lads getting a run.
    I hope, they get the game time they need, to build confidence,
    needed to play at County level.
    I would like to see , a big panel of players kept in training under Donie Buckley, divided into an A and B , panel, with the B , lads playing County Junior football.
    I would go further is suggesting that Donnie Buckley, be invited to give coaching classes to Club Coaches/ Team Managers, within the County.
    This way , every one would be singing from the same hymn sheet and we would have a constant conveyor belt of new talent available to our County Team, with a high standard of Club Football.

  15. Don’t know if it’s feasible or not but your suggestion there ed, regarding Donni Buckley doing coaching sessions with Club Managers and or Coaches seems a dam good idea…….

  16. Thanks for the reports lads…much appreciated by those of us who don’t live at home in mayo.

    Sounds like there were promising signs but early days. I have seen plenty of Brian Gallagher in club football and like the look of him. One weakness is a tendency to drift out of games but hopefully jh and donie can work on that. He has huge potential.

    I worry that Adam Gallagher and last year’s minors are still a bit young to be the answer but hope I’m wrong.

    Anyone know about Danny Kirby. Surprised me that he looked at 2 Mitchells lads but not him.

    Disappointing loss for 21s cut Cavan are strong and I note the lads who played last night weren’t involved

  17. Thanks to all for insightful comments for those of us who couldn’t attend.

    What strikes me though is that the FBD is a waste of time for Mayo. College teams are crap at this time of year, so two of our games will be worthless. What we need is matches against all the teams, particularly Galway and Roscommon.

    By playing two games over a weekend this should be quite feasible and would result in much better league prep for Connacht teams.

  18. I don’t agree that the FBD is a waste of time. It obviously is not at the pace or skill level of inter county championship, but, it can be a useful few games if used correctly. The college teams, as a squad, most likely will not be at the technical level of an inter county side but they were not subject to the training ban and so will have been training for much longer than the inter county sides and will be as fit, if not fitter, than the county teams. I think if you asked the Mayo debutants if last nights game was a waste of time, I doubt they would agree. I do agree though that it is not a guide for how we may do later in the year. Winning the FBD wont mean we are red hot favourites for the All Ireland.
    I think if we can use the FBD to find 5 or 6 players to add to the league squad and see how they get on in that competition, we may then have a fresher squad with real competition for places come the championship. One thing is for sure, anyone that is worth looking at will get a chance and Horan cannot be accused of not spreading the net wide. Roscommon in Ballinlough next weekend should be an early tester for some of the younger lads.

  19. I was hoping , with Sweeney King and Coen, that mayhem would ensue in front of Nuig goals, after all hardly a pressure game, but I was left wondering with all the posturing and shapes thrown -are we any closer to finding a real instinctive forward – one who can dissect the posts without looking or beat the keeper without thinking.. not yet we’re not.

  20. I was in cold bekan, it felt more like turkey. Cavan ,a well deserved 1-14 to 10 pt winners against a depleted and flat Mayo. Cavan were speedy incisive and sometimes very accurate in front of goals where mayo just were not any of the above except on a couple of occasions during the game, when they strung a move or two together. It looked like the Cavan lads on show are a bit more developed having a bit of u21 success in recent years, that’s not surprising.I had no team sheet so wont get into who did what. anyway its the 11th of Jan so we wont panic yet, oh and it was free in which takes a bit of the sting out of the € 10 cover charge for last nights entertainment.

  21. Lads and lassies. I think it is way too early and even unfair to begin judging any players at this stage, way to early. Take AOS against Donegal and AOS against the Dubs. He was like two different players on two different days. The important thing is to give as many as possible as many chances as possible and see what happens.

    I feel that even the league should be a bedding in process; we could just stay up. If that meant finding a few more new prospects for the Championship, all the better. Forget what other teams do. Let us focus on Mayo, their future prospects and work towards that!!!

  22. It is great to be back again. Looking forward to Mayo v Ross next week. Adam Gallagher will be a fine player if he keeps moving in the direction he is going. I thought Keane Mchale, King, done well. Darren Coen is set to have a great year..Brian Gallagher always plays well for his club and I would like to see him get a run during the league.Well done Mike Kelly on the report, it was just as I remembered it.

  23. Team named for tomorrow against Sligo IT.

    1.) Brendan Walsh – Ballintubber
    2.) Keith Rogers – Ballaghaderreen
    3.) Kevin Keane – Westport
    4.) Ger Cafferkey – Ballina Stephenites
    5.) Brendan Harrison – Aghamore
    6.) Shane McHale – Knockmore
    7.) David Drake – Ballaghaderreen
    8.) Jason Gibbons – Ballintubber
    9.) Brian Gallagher – Claremorris
    10.) Sean Kelly – Bohola Moy Davitts
    11.) Cathal Freeman – Aghamore
    12.) Cathal Carolan – Crossmolina
    13.) Kevin McLoughlin – Knockmore
    14.) Darren Coen – Hollymount/Carramore
    15.) Andy Moran – Ballaghaderreen (Capt.)

    16.) Robert Hennelly – Breaffy
    17.) Colm Boyle – Davitts
    18.) Lee Keegan – Westport
    19.) Mickey Conroy – Davitts
    20.) Jason Doherty – Burrishoole
    21.) Enda Varley – Garrymore
    22.) Alan Freeman – Aghamore
    23.) Keith Higgins – Ballyhaunis
    24.) Aidan O Shea – Breaffy
    25.) Donal Vaughan – Ballinrobe

  24. Cheers Mick. Good to see a lot of the new lads being given more chances. That’s what the FBD is all about. I hope they are better prepared in Charlestown just incase there is a massive turnout again.

  25. Looks like the Castlebar and Kiltane lads are rested with their respective two big All-Ireland semis coming up.

    Kiltane play the weekend after next in Ballinasloe, and I wonder when will Mikie Sweeney get his next opportunities? The senior panel is a big jump from outside if you don’t get FBD and early National League outings.

    Agree with earlier comment about not rushing minors through to senior before their ready. The County and club U-21 and College/Sigerson football, as well as senior club football should be used in an organised way for all the best prospects after county minor level. There should be a playing committee to monitor and organise their development through to the senior county panel. It all seems totally disjointed to detriment of the county and most of the players with potential.

  26. don’t disagree with a lot of that Pebblesmeller. My point is that the students don’t provide sufficient opposition at this time of year. All Connacht county teams would benefit from playing each other – as well as the students.

  27. If kiltane reach the final it will be played in mid feb, so at the latest Sweeney/reilly should be available from then on, king and o reilly may not see game time again until march which will make it tough for them to break onto county panel. would certainly hope that the fact that the Mitchell’s and kiltane boys are not available for next few weeks will not result in them missing out on another opportunity, its my belief that intermediate players in particular need at least 2 months of collective training with a senior inter county team before their value can be properly assessed.

  28. Ya I saw it earlier seemed a v experimental line up would expect a vastly diff team come championship, eg none of last years minors togged out today. Evan regan, adam Gallagher Kevin gibbons also missing. An AI winning minor side should have 4 or 5 starters on following years u21 team. In 2006, our u21 winners featured ger caff, chris Barrett, Tom cunniffe, Seamus O Shea and Aidan Campbell, who were all members of the mayo minor side beaten in 2005 AI minor final by down, a side which included one Pearse Hanley at midfield as a 16 year old. Incidentally he hasn’t ruled out coming back to play for mayo, but not for 3 years at least. What a signing he would be even if it was in 3 years time!

  29. Jason Gibbons has to make the half foreward line this summer. When I think back on September and us leaving an out of form Kevin Mc Loughlin on for the whole game along with a half fit Alan Dillon and loosing by a point I could cry!

  30. Shane Keane,kevin lynch,liam kitterick,aidan butler,padgraig Ducran,cian Burke,Stephen Henry,Micheal O’Malley,Gareth O’Donnell,Anthoy Jordan,Ryan Quirke,Steven Conroy,Brian Heneghan,James shaughnessy,James Durcan

    Both sides were missing a number of possible championship starters.

  31. IT Sligo are better than NUI Galway the very strong bench will be needed. Evan Regan against Kevin Keane should be a good contest the two McHughs of Donegal will need watching.

  32. Shane keane.*

    Kevin lynch.

    Liam Kitterick.

    Aidan Butler

    Padraig Durcan *

    Cian Burke

    Stephen Henry *

    Michael o Malley *

    Gareth o donnell

    Anthony Jordan.

    Ryan quirke *

    Steven Conroy *

    Brian henneghan

    James shaughnessy

    James Durcan *

    Under 21 team that started today, men with stars didn’t feature last week. Key men missing were Adam Gallagher, Diarmuid o Connor, and Stephen Coen through playing Friday night. Evan Regan I presume is playing for Sligo IT tomorrow and possibly rested because of it.Sean Regan was on the bench today I think , he was very good last week too.

    Maybe some of the reasoning behind today’s weakened team as well as the players excused because of playing for the seniors was that they are going to have to cut the 40 plus panel soon and they want to give everyone a run in this Hastings cup to prove themselves .

  33. We’re off!

    Fair play Mike for report and pebblesmeller too for weighing in with his contribution. It’s like we got the FBD in 3D.

    Close enough contest so I guess the youn guns didn’t exactly rip the college kids a new arsehole. In fairness a Uni team comming back after the christmas and new year break should not be running a serious contender for the Sam Maguire cup, close.

    On th plus side, Hennely was the only guy that started from that day in September. On the minus side Mayo should be swatting these guys aside.

    I hope that some of these new lads come through and take this opportunity of the FBD to showcase their potential. 70 plus minutes is a long time on stage under a spotlight.

    Any new lads who can break into this panel has a real chance for the first time in a long long time of winning the elusive Sam. We didn’t really want him the last two years so we decided to give him away. First we handed him over to Donegal and last year we gave him to the poor aul Dubs. Arrah sure the Donies and the Dubs are nice people, all the same.

    Come on, in the name of f**k “young guns” You want to make history? The time is now.

  34. Couldn’t anyone remove these very old comments from this Mayo site. What’s the point in going way back to 1914 when we are in 2015?

  35. Harry – regardless of whether it’s 1914 or 2014, I don’t get the point your making. Old posts and comments on them remain on the site, I don’t see what your problem is with that.

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