No new injuries worries ahead of Sunday

This short piece in the Mayo News yesterday indicates that all of the 26 players who were togged on Saturday night are likely to be available for selection for our final round match against Derry this Sunday. It’s also stated in that article that Aghamore duo Alan Freeman and Brendan Harrison were both withdrawn from the fray at Croke Park due to “flu symptoms” but that both should be okay for Sunday. There’s no mention, though, of Ger Cafferkey, who – as far as I know – had to be replaced on Saturday night due to injury.

Assuming that everyone is okay, I’d say we’ll see very little change to the starting fifteen for Sunday. Mikie Sweeney will certainly be pushing hard for a place in the team from the throw-in but James might want to hold him in reserve until the match starts to open up a bit after the break.

By the way, someone was asking about our full subs list for last Saturday. Aside from Shane McHale, David Drake, Seamus O’Shea, Ton Parsons, Enda Varley and Mikie Sweeney, all of whom saw action at Croke Park, the bench that night included sub goalie Brendan Walsh, as well as Kevin Keane, Stephen Coen, Adam Gallagher and Darren Coen.

53 thoughts on “No new injuries worries ahead of Sunday

  1. Willie Joe,

    I saw that piece and while it’s all to the good, and at the risk of repeating myself, what about giving some game time to those who really need it now.

    In particular, Richie Feeney, Barry Moran, Tom Parsons – full game, Brian Gallagher, Chris Barrett to name but a few.

    And what about Evan Regan? The rigours of U21 duty, Sigerson and other college activities long past, shouldn’t he now be chomping at the bit to play?

    Also, semi final, final (if we made them)? They run right up against New York. Joke team you say. Maybe, but with Brendan Begley, Ross Wherity and Nicky Joyce they have at least a few who could trouble our defence. There should be no distractions ahead of that game.

  2. Hopefully Richie Feeney will be added to the panel for sunday.Would give us a great extra option from the bench

  3. Agree with you on that hop the dubs win and hopefully will meat them again for is the league is out can’t believe I am saying that.

  4. Western People seem to be suggesting that Ger Cafferkey was ill along with Brendan Harrison, with no mention of Alan Freeman! Who knows :p

  5. With the greatest of respect to excellent footballers I dont think that Stephen Coen or Adam Gallagher would have handled the physicality of the Dubs on Saturday night. Good call from the management I think. I think that Mayo are one of the few teams that can handle Dublin’s physical approach. Dublin have the tackle down to a tee with massive PR spin by their management (the beautiful game and Cluxtons trip!) ensuring that they are treated fairly (more than fairly!). I still think they get protected by the Dublin based media but what the heck maybe we would do the same thing if we could.

  6. I’d say we’re getting beyond the time for experimentation at this stage. From here on, we’re likely to see little more than incremental change from one game to the next. I’d be very surprised if we made five or six changes for Sunday and can’t see similar switching being done ahead of a semi-final or final either, should we make it that far. I’ve no idea what the story is with Evan Regan’s involvement this year, to be honest, but I’d say if he’s not in the mix by now he’s unlikely to be.

    I’m with you on the dangers of the New York trip. The nightmare scenario I’d have would see us beaten in a league final by, say, the Dubs and then have the match in Gaelic Park just a week after that. I’m not saying this is how I think the League campaign will finish up for us but the very short gap that’s potentially between the end of the League for us and the start of the championship is a bit of a nagging worry. I know that New York are nothing like London but, as you’ve pointed out, they have a few good inter-county players with them (it’s Brendan Quigley of Laois, by the way, not Brendan Begley) and we need to approach this one with at least some degree of caution.

  7. Interesting point there Sinabhuil. They still could have got some game time, but in any case definitely should against Derry.

    And yes, the Dubs ‘physicalit’y is one of the least talked about aspects. See the new techniques honed over the last year – the hand in the face, masquerading as a push. Macauley has perfected this and Cooper was at it big time, not to mention Connolly. And of course Cluxton, who was ‘frustrated’, but, thank God, there was nothing malicious in it.

    Controlled petulance you might call it and it will be overlain this year with arrogance – our divine right – never in short supply with the Dubs. I thought that Mayo needed to be more assertive at times, showing them who was boss, when we were bossing it.

    Maybe Sky will zone in on this when they get going

  8. I see Brian Mc Iver has said he will give some of his panel players a run out on sun!! Will be interesting to see what team they will name.

  9. He put his hand up with an injury and was taken off about 5 mins later, looked like an injury

  10. Interesting point Willie Joe re potential gap between league final and a trip to NYC

    Also, just on New York they very nearly bate Galway a few years ago in the first round! This Mayo side is better than that Galway one but it just goes to show can never underestimate anyone

  11. It’s an interesting one with the Dubs actually

    Part of me wants another rattle at them. However another part of me is terrified of losing to them again and in a final no less

    If we do end up meeting them, well so be it 🙂

  12. Is it my imagination or was it flu symptoms that was given for the reason for being taking off in AIF?

  13. You can’t dismiss any team , Waterford nearly caught Galway in the qualifiers last year but after the brutal winter New York just had, they can’t have had near enough training to make a dent in Mayo. Castlebar Mitchell’s would probably beat them if it went to it.
    13 snowstorms and savage cold would really have killed any outdoor training. Running on the road or sidewalks only goes so far and then the challenge game situation is limited too.
    It’s a nice trip for Mayo, no competition to talk of, fitness levels are chalk and cheese.

  14. Yeah HIR, I heard them saying that they are really looking forward to having a game in Croke Park, so they have being talking about that, the semi-final game, rather than the game against us, so that’s good to hear as well. Although we’ll still have to keep our eyes on the prize and make sure that we don’t take them lightly.

  15. Ciaran

    That’s the worst of it, we have to endure the question of whether we are to win or not in a final, maybe we will end up losing a league final to Dublin, or maybe that draw was the last time Mayo will be equalled or beaten in 2014!!

  16. I wouldn’t dismiss New York either, they could give us a lot of trouble! They’ve been doing some serious training the last few months, really upped the way they are approaching this match!

  17. Mick
    Where were they training? And who did they play apart from themselves? They may give Mayo a game for a period in the match but the cumulative experience and training that Mayo have will beat 26- 28 counties comfortably at the moment, and that’s counties that get competitive games every few weeks for the last 2 months.
    New York don’t have that luxury, it’s just simply not there.
    What did Leitrim score against them last year? 4 24 or something ridiculous, I’m not going to pretend it’ll be competitive, it won’t.
    If you’re not testing Leitrim, you’re definitely not testing Mayo.

  18. WJ
    If I was JH I would be experimenting on Sunday. This will be the last chance to try things out in a really competitive game. He is unlikely to do so in a semifinal or final of the league if we get there.
    We need to give the Castlebar lads a chance to show what they can do as well as Adam Gallagher and Tom Parsons. It’s the least they deserve and we may need them before the year is out.

  19. Yeah diehard, I’d say it would be no harm to see a few changes anyway for this game, maybe not wholesale changes. It’d be good for competition for places for the season ahead. We need to be able to trust our back-up players. It was interesting to see how eager Andy Moran was to do well the last night as he knew that his place for the summer might be in danger. I’d like to see Seamus O’Shea get a run out, I’m sure that he’d like to make up for what happened against the Dubs. Last year he was going really well but we have not seen much of him so far this year. Also if Chris Barret is available, it’d be great to see him get some game time. Barry Moran’s height and strength would make him a good candidate to play against Derry, as so far they have out muscled most teams, they have played against in the league. It’d be nice to see Adam Gallagher get a chance again too, as we need some more scoring options up front.

  20. Good to hear that we have a clean bill of health from last Saturday. I see from the 26 man squad that we have a quite few household names absent in R Feeney, M Conroy, B Moran, A Dillon and C Barrett. I wonder will JH draft in any additional Castlebar players, Tom king did get some game time in the FBD league if my memory serves me right.

    I believe C Barrett is close! Any word on how Alan Dillon is progressing-? Is there any time scale as to when he can return to competitive action, plenty of room for the two time all star who still has a lot to offer IMO…

  21. I agree with ya in saying that the Dubs gets protected by the Dublin based media, sure even the refs treats them differently to all other teams. Fair play isn’t in it. Money talks.

  22. Won’t be seeing any Castlebar lads at this rate bar the main 3- Moran, Cunniffe and Feeney. Cunniffe the only likely starter. Barry’s run with castlebar will likely actually count against him. Especially given Gibbons’ form

  23. He could play at full forward. I think it’s a good idea to have a target man in there.

  24. When you add in the likes of Barry Moran, Richie Feeney, Chris Barrett and Alan Dillon it will be a very competitive battle to get into the panel at all. Which is all to the good I suppose but one has to feel for those left out who have “endured the heat of the day” so to speak [and the cold and wet of the night as well].
    I don’t see Tom King getting into the panel after a poorish Club Final performance. Of the Castlebar lads outside the usual three I would think Alan Feeney and perhaps Danny Kirby would be the more likely based on their club campaign. I also thought that their goalie, Ciaran? Naughton showed up well and would be well fit to fill in if another emergence arose like last year.
    Does anybody now where Kenneth O’Malley is? Is he still injured or has he left the panel?
    Incidentally I felt that Ross O’Carroll would not have chanced playing Barry Moran in the way he played Alan Freeman last Saturday, And if Barry had been there I don’t think that some of our posters would have needed to be complaining about “poor ball” being played in.

  25. Great to see that Club51 are coming down from their lofty perch in the stand for next Sundays match and joining the real supporters across the way. We were feeling left out there for a while, with only James Horan and co to keep us company. Anyway it should be a great occasion with I’m told, the biggest crowd of the campaign expected, and with our boys still smarting from last weekend and anxious to make amends, the game is set to be a cracker…..

  26. Lads, two things that have to be done on Sunday next or you’ll be the very ones that will be venting yer anger on JH.

    First, we must win to be sure of qualifying for the league semi-final.

    Secondly, we must plug the leaky defence.

    Some posters have been writing about possible dangers in the long grass in the Big Apple, well I’d be much more concerned with Brian McIver’s Derry. We scored a total of 130 pts in total so far in the league, and Derry were close behind with 124 pts. However, while we gave up 123 pts, Derry’s defence conceded 24 pts less than we did. Oh and they beat Dublin by 6 pts.

    Now some will say, so what if we don’t go on to the semi-final, final and win it out? Other will argue that our slower boiling fitness programme this year means we will be in a position to win the league? And the latter point may have some merit.

    I say that in the last 11 years, 6 counties have won the League and Championship double. Success breeds success and I believe our players need as much of that that they can get.
    I say put out the best team in the best known positions (regardless of what Derry do – they’ve already qualified), and that includes Keith returning to the backs. I would rate Feeney as worth a starting slot at 12. I think he’s been given more rest to cure up a groin injury that I’m told required an injection before the club semi v Crokes.

    If we fix the leaks and put up a score in the first half, I give time to the other players, but no confusing ones like Varley for Caff.

    It took two years to build a formation and understanding, which last year resulted in the acknowledged best back unit in the country and I believe the cement of that formation was Keith. He dominated his corner and with great anticipation skills he covered any openings near his area too. It does not make sense to break up that unit for any reason.

    And Keith isn’t getting any more score this year in the forwards than he got coming forward as a back last year.

    Put him back against Derry and see leaks reduced. Having him drift back isn’t the answer, and unmarked Dublin players worked their last two goals last Saturday night through the area he has dominated for years.

    Here’s the lineup I would go with:

    – Hennelly. – (Sub: Walsh)
    Cunniffe – Cafferkey – Higgins. – (Subs: Barrett, Harrison, McHale, Drake, Keane)
    Keegan – Vaughan – Boyle
    – AOS – Gibbons. – (Subs: SOS, Parsons)
    McLoughlin – A. Moran – Feeney. – (Subs: Sweeney, A. Gallagher, B.Moran)
    Doherty – Freeman. – O’Connor

    A competitive team that has competition for the majority of places.

    The glass is half full – keep filling it !

  27. You may be right Willie Joe about the ship sailing and those not on board and all that, but I think that’s a bit depressing.

    JH talked of finding new players over the league and while the league has been satisfactory in that we stay up, who are those players? Adam Gallagher is the only one and he hasn’t featured since the Kerry match. Brian Gallagher wasn’t on the bench on Saturday.

    The new defenders have been exposed at various stages – even Drake I felt was stretched on Saturday. In that sense we are way behind Dublin

  28. Keith should be back in his home position at corner back not forward but a back where he belongs. Also any news of mayo team yet.

  29. Good post there Cloud9, would agree on us needing to tighten up our defence and what better way of doing it, than returning Higgins to his rightful and best position. What’s the point in putting up big scores if we then nullify same by conceding soft goals at the other end. And if necessary he can still contribute to the attack as he has done on many occasions from that deep position.

  30. Varley for Caff wasn’t confusing. Did varley go in at full back? No, Higgins came back and Varley went into the forwards.

  31. Cloud you are right. Higgins is needed in the backs. That bit of speed and steel is needed to make up for the dis-jointment caused by our style of half backs attacking. I sometimes wonder why we play such a traditional forwards line-up. Surely a Donegal style rugby style attacking as team would be more appropriate. When our half backs and midfield attack at pace, and they do!, they need more room to run into. I assume our forwards are told to get out of the way, run wide,? The runners should be on the shoulder of the man running with the ball a la Hollymount invented years ago. This takes huge fitness and this is what made Donegal champions in 2012. Overall the level of sophistication of trainers these days is huge. Gavin and Horan are brilliant and if sometimes it does not work this does not mean they are no good it means the other manager has won the battle on this occasion.

  32. Cloud9, no dillon in that squad you named?! I know he is coming to the end of his career but there is no way he will not be a part of the squad. His experience will be good as the year progresses. Possibly sacrafice one of the backs you have named as subs for Dillon.

  33. Barry Moran is a very good target man but he’s not Superman, the quality of ball in is crucial.

    Anyway JH has demonstrated that he’d rather have a mobile, quick-thinking full-forward than a target-man any day of the week, e.g. McLoughlin this season or Andy Moran last year. This will probably work against B. Moran more than any other factor.

  34. I know that, but point there was that he disrupted two units and Keith looked confused – play back the match and see the big hole down the right, where the Dublin goals came through after the re-jig.

  35. I’ve always been a Dillon fan but the injury he has demands a lot rest and recovery time. On top, I’m told he also had an operation. I’m worried that even if he gets back playing in time for New York, that he won’t have the fitness level or games under his belt that are necessary these days at the top level to be effective.
    Alan owes Mayo and us supporters nothing, and having him play if he’s not near 100 per cent wouldn’t be fair to him. If he gets back, near fully fit and well, there would be a place in any squad for him!

  36. You know Sinabhuil, I’d agree that our tendency towards traditional style and game plans in the past has made us predicable and I’d say has cost in big matches, where better game plans were inflicted upon us to great effect.
    This year, it is a major plus that JH is in constant communications with his fellow selectors. I’d be worried though at how they have allowed Caff to be the one draw away from in front of goal, and they haven’t switched other players to chase, while leaving Caff on square duty, where he is at his best.
    Certainly, more imaginative and effective game plans would be desirable for the big games ahead this year.

  37. Of course, so long as ye don’t take over all our blue seats, or cause any trouble ! 🙂

  38. Is it true that the first 2 teams get a home semi-final in the League or is this just a rumour that’s out and about ?

  39. The best way for Barry Moran at FF to work would be to have 2 lightening fast corner forwards to latch onto breaking balls and burst through on goal. Barry would cause any FB problems (with the right ball) as Mayo3G said above.

  40. Heard that too but I was told after they’ll be in Croker wing top playing fourth and second playing third. Not a 100 per cent on that though!

  41. Yeah when Caff is gone Mayo are seriously susceptible to goals. I cant see how we can play without having a 4th full back albeit he may be slightly in front of the full back. He would also cover for the half backs and full backs when they go walkabout. Sweepers are needed.

  42. Big Baz would be a starter for most teams but the traditional full forward just doesn’t appeal to JH, e.g. League this year, McLoughlin at FF with Freeman (who is a very capable target man), warming the bench.

    What does that mean for B. Moran? Impact sub role perhaps? Tough, but a big positive for JH is the strenght of his squad compared to last year.

  43. If Chris was back fully fit for the corner, wouldn’t you say Keith would be the best fulfil that role?

  44. Willie Joe, I haven’t posted on this site got well over a year, not since I seen my name used “lobitin” in the “Hogan Stand” This poster stole my name and.does not represent my I was sorry to read that you were thinking about throwing your hat at this project last Sun. Sure Mayo fans /posters regularly go over the top with criticism & sometimes praise and it must be a pain keeping some people in.check. I want to.say the game can lol totally different on TV than if your present. For instance last Saturday from my perch in 505 I could see the freemen that the ball should be offloaded to,quickly to, you don’t get that on , I watched it twice on TV afterwards & the reffere had a far better game, but he.still missed a few things, “like a blatant punch on on Donal Vaughan by Diarmod Connolly half.way trough the first half, I seen it the ref didn’t The.”Sunday World” photographer seen it too.. A o Shea, & J Gibbons also received treatment following Mayo scores in the first half, Dublin live on the edge.I think we will be playing them again soon we need to learn our lessons, they will to be sure. What cost us the win more than anything was really poor wides when we should.have buried them. Dublin might be.foolish to think as accommodating again. Still you have to to the.Dubs, they’re a great team to make.a comeback especially with late goals, it’s a feature of this team, remember the All Ireland semi final v Kerry it’s not just Mayo that succomed, but we are a great team to give goals.away late on , remember Cork,.Westmeath, bad habits tend to.repeat themselves, Still a draw against the.strongest Dublin team available in Croker is no bad result,.a point is still a point. So my message is keep calm it’s only April, roll on Derry 2 more points and we will get.another rattle at the Dubs hopefully, most teams.have no chance of turning them over, but we.certainly do.

  45. The attendance in Croke Park for League game last weekend was 22000. I’m pretty sure that a match against the Dubs in Castlebar would get high figures as well. Also it was a Saturday night which would have helped figures as people could have the weekend in Dublin.

    Bottom line is that I would be disgusted if it came to light that just because Dubin got through that matches are automatically allocated to Croke Park. Far too much favouritism being shown.

  46. It’s unfortunate lobitin, that your post was the last one on this page, ’cause it’s a very good one, hitting the nail on the head on several points. Whatever about the low blows from the Dubs, we need to be careful not to react, ’cause it’s always the retaliation bit that refs seem to picked up on. I’d be more concerned though with the many wide’s and the leaking of soft goals, that’s really what’s killing us, solve that and the sky is the limit. Anyway lobitin good to have you back……

  47. Ya lob it in great to have you back, You tend to know what your talking about most of the time! ah no great piece

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