Parsons out for Fermanagh game

TomParsonsMayo

Photo: Breaking News

As was well trailed yesterday, the Mayo News today carries the unwelcome report this morning (paper and digital variants) that we’ve suffered another significant injury blow ahead of our Round 2B qualifier against Fermanagh this coming Saturday. The bad news is that Charlestown midfielder Tom Parsons damaged his hamstring in training last Friday evening and so he’s definitely out of this make-or-break backdoor clash.

Tom’s unfortunate injury – he missed the London match this year as well – means that, with Jason Gibbons also out, the midfield pairing the next day will be totally changed from the one that lined out against Galway last month. The fact that we suffered such a bad hosing in the sector in that game means that it’s an area that Stephen Rochford and his selectors will, in any event, have been giving particular thought to but another enforced change there wouldn’t, one imagines, have been top of their wish-list coming into the qualifiers.

It’s worth noting that the former Ernesider player Barry Owens, writing in the Fermanagh Herald last week (here), identified midfield as a key battleground for Castlebar. He pointed to the Northerners’ strength in the sector, saying that Eoin Donnelly is “probably the best midfielder in Ulster if not in Ireland.”  It’s clear that we’re going to need to have a good think about what pairing is best to deploy there on Saturday.

We’ve not devoid of options. Barry Moran should be okay to start, as should Seamus O’Shea, though personally I wouldn’t go with both of them in tandem. The case for switching Aidan O’Shea back to the engine room grows stronger with this injury blow too but is it time to reprise the O’Shea x 2 pairing we last used there in the championship in 2013? I’m not so sure.

More fluidity in that area could come in the form of U21s Stephen Coen and Diarmuid O’Connor, both of whom are, I’d reckon, cast-iron certainties to line out the next day. The Mayo News (still the digital and papers versions, I’m afraid) also notes that Donal Vaughan, Shane Nally and Alan Freeman – who are all pushing to start – play in that line with their clubs. Only Donie, however, has done so at county level and not with enormous success either.

All will be revealed later in the week, I guess – we’re set to name our team for Saturday’s match on Thursday or Friday. In the meantime, best of luck to Tom and here’s hoping he makes a rapid recovery. We are, I know, in one-slip-and-you’re-gone territory now but, all going well on Saturday, he’ll hopefully be available for us further down the line in this year’s championship.

123 thoughts on “Parsons out for Fermanagh game

  1. Hoping Tom recovers speedily. Worrying trend in the number of injuries we are picking up. I’d use Aidan & Seamie at midfield. Keep Barry Moran in reserve to cover any further injuries in-play.

  2. I presume the hamstring Tom Parsons got will rule him out for at least a month in the meantime I see no reason why Mayo shouldn’t revert back to Barry Moran A O Shea who was the midfield partnership throughout 2012 or the two O Sheas the midfield pairing in all 2013.

    Coen has the makings for a good midfielder but he’s a bit raw yet for such key position.

  3. Sorry for Tom ,, hope he recovers quickly ,,I’d start with Barry and Seamie ,, would only bring out aiden if struggling . Caff and now Tom .. This will test us .

  4. Tom is a big loss on Saturday. He provides a lot of mobility to that sector so it will definitely have a big impact on our setup.

    We do have some options there though. Seamie O’Shea should be in better shape following his return from injury so he’ll definitely start. The options for his partner are Barry Moran, Stephen Coen or Aidan O’Shea. Not a bad deck given the personnel problems we’ve had.

    Donnelly is a fine player and will have to be addressed. It might even merit using the Tomas O’Se tactic of ‘hammering the hammer’. Trot Aido out for twenty minutes to test his ballast.

    Aidan O’Shea is a talisman for us, a player that can turn games on his own and one that we should be looking to drive us on. Fermanagh would only be delighted to see him on the sideline.

  5. That’s a pity, wishing Tom a speedy recovery. Recovery is slower once you close in on the 30 year mark and even slower when you pass it, ie : Caff.

    Coen is a fine player and a real leader on the field but I’m not convinced of his suitability as an orthodox midfielder. Even in the 21 campaign he was more suitable to no6. He lacks the height of a Mattie Ruane. The latter is only still 20 am I right?

    You would imagine it’ll be two of AOS, SOS and Barry. A lot of mileage there. Rochford may look to freshen things up. Someone mentioned Vaughan. I wouldn’t be surprised if he starts. Big engine on him and I would imagine he is relatively fresh and chomping at the bit to make an impression.

    We are fortunate that we have a relatively strong squad which enables us to juggle about when injuries occur/ form dips etc. The only problem is we don’t seem to have a settled team nor do we seem to have much a visible or effective gameplan so far this year.

    Like we’ve all being saying, Saturday will tell a lot. If we manage to overcome Fermanagh it’s a tough road ahead. More injuries are likely so expect changes.

  6. Maybe a combination of Seamie and Coen would give us the best balance in terms of mobility and physicality at midfield. Then with Aidan at 11, that would still give us plenty of ball winning ability around the middle of the field. If Vaughan is fit then I wouldn’t mind seeing him restored to centre-half back with Keegan and Boyle at 5 and 7. With Diarmuid and Kevin Mc at 10 and 12, that would still give us a strong and mobile middle 8. I’d keep Barry on the bench as back-up along with Durcan and Nally. Best wishes to Tom on a speedy recovery.

  7. Pulling a hamstring in a match in one thing but in training it’s unfortunate. Might be just a minor tweak. Hope he recovers well.

  8. I want to wish Tom Parsons a quick recovery. Since his career emerged from the doldrums in 2014 he has been brilliant for Mayo. The only silver lining is that in the middle of the park Rochford does have a good choice of replacement personnel.

    I hope whoever is picked to start has a stormer on Saturday.

    Hon’Mayo

  9. Mayonaze think barry as started 16 championship games in his career so not a lot of mileage there, bring out aos he’s the only all star midfielder we have

  10. Masssive loss even though he wasnt at his best v galway. Im not at all sure about the suggestion of starting vaughan. One of the best athletes, great year in 13 but he struggles for football intelligence. A lot of needless running and slow to pick the right option when he has to release often taking wayward shots.

  11. AOS with Coen in midfield, Coen more than able to match Parsons mobility around the pitch and its about time AOS was returned to his most effective position, the experiment of turning him into Michael Murphy is a failure and is a waste of his talents. Parsons injury is unfortunate and hope for a speedy recovery. It isn’t however a massive blow as we have plenty of options around the middle.

  12. Any chance of a surprise draftee for MF cover I wonder….Kirby/Ruane. Prob not! We de be in a nice fix though if another went down in these injury prone times. As it is, looks like Aido will have to be more MF focused after all.
    Are we more injury hit than other counties or is it only a perception?
    I like the 3.30 start time btw …suits the ould codgers….in the seats, not on the field!!

  13. In between. The time for experimenting was in the league, when some on here didn’t give a shit about what happened. Sure we were going to have a different style for the championship anyway. Sure it didn’t matter if we were relegated. Etc

  14. if what anyone on any forum says has an bearing on what happens on the pitch, we are in trouble.

  15. My opinion is that Barry has played a lot of football over the years, mileage in club counts too and Cbar have been on long roads over the past few years. He is another near or on the 30 mark.

    I still think he is (when fit and on form) and excellent midfielder to have but neither he nor SOS have many years left.

    Sean, I hear ya re: Vaughan. He was very effective back in 12/13…. I don’t know how he is going in training but f fully fit I’m sure Rochford will see him as an option.

    It’s tough on Rochford. Not an easy gig. He has inherited a bunch, most of whom have been on the road for 6/7 (some more) years…playing deep into the Autumn for most of those years. Expectation levels very high in the county. The barometer of success risen to the point of ‘Sam or bust'(not that there’s anything wrong with that at all) but for a rookie manager, not much older than some of the players, it’s difficult. Very difficult I would imagine.

    Saturday will be interesting that’s for sure.

  16. With all these injuries there must be something wrong with the strength and conditioning programme. The year we had Cian O’Neill we had no injuries. Even Barry Moran had no injury throughout the year and was in peak form

  17. The injury issue really is alarming and needs to be examined. one of the key things for the players in getting rid of the last management was to bring back the full medical team. Since day 1 Rochford hasn’t got a break with them, and he has not really got too many performances out of his team. Maybe the training is geared wrong. Our backs cramping with 20 minutes to go against Galway!!? Big day on Saturday for Stephen. It’s hard to see him and a lot of the players being back in 2017 if the result goes wrong.

  18. i am with you on that Ger Bohan , I am still at a loss to how we had lads getting cramp so early in their second championship game of the year, the S and C men better come up with a new plan now which allows for regular matches if we are to progress.

    AOS in midfield , hammer the hammer is right , take them on where they are strongest and start Barry beside him with Seamus primed to come on to take over from whoever needs relief. Massive day for Rochfords inter county career. No Vaughan or Coen in midfield please, they can be deployed in more familiar positions. Come on Mayo!

  19. I think many are ignoring the fact this team while not over the hill on average age has alot of milage on the clock. Injuries do happen and we need to be able to deal with them. Dublin and Kerry do but do we have the strength in depth? Any word on anyone being drafted into the panel in place of Caff ?

  20. We took our eyes off the ball against Galway, a blip i’m hoping. I’m assuming the training was geared towards later on in the year and that’s the reason why lads were cramping. Solan is working with professionals at Arsenal and will adjust his programs now for the Mayo squad for the backdoor system. I expect a bullish start to the game, with Mayo showing plenty of fight, we really need to blow out the cobwebs in the A vs B training games, and give a good performance against Fermanagh which we all know they are capable off. If they do this, they will win. I hope to see plenty of support this Saturday, with plenty of passion from the stands and the sidelines, not like the silence in the stand the last day, it was deadening. Us supporters need to be the 16th man, no point sitting like zombies on the sideline when our team needs us to cheer them on and pick them up. James Horan said the sound was very dead from fans in 2013 final against Dublin. It will be a long summer twidling our thumbs if we get dumped out of Castlebar on Saturday by another division 2 team. Don’t show the white feather boys!!! I will be making the journey from Dublin. Maigh Eo Abu!!!

  21. Hopefully Tom doing his hammy is an indication of high intensity on the training ground!
    I expect a huge reaction on Saturday. One of the lads said in an interview after the Galway game that for the last few years they had 9 months to mull over the defeat now they have 3 weeks.
    I think Fermanagh won’t know what hit them ?

  22. I wouldnt blame the S and C programme or training methods for injuries, Buckley and Solan have been in place for a number of years now and this is the first period of injuries, Most of the which are players who are on the road for a long time and wear and tear is an issue.

    I wouldnt blame Rochford for the issues with the team. This is not his team, its still Horans. He came in late and didnt have a chance to look for his type of player. He has now had a good look at this current team, he will know who is adaptable to his style and who isnt. Next year will be the start of Rochfords reign. There will be huge changes to the panel. He should be given at least two more years to develop his team and have a right go at AI. Changing managers is not the way to go.

  23. Parsons had a poor game against Galway and did not look fully fit.It seems to me that if you are injured or leave the panel eg Cunniffe your value to the team soars in this forum.Who Rochford adds to the panel as replacements will tell us a lot.

  24. Parsons is a massive loss .
    He is one of the best midfielders in the country.

    I dont think we need to go for speed or running at midfield Barry and Seamie or Seamie and Aidan will do fine .
    Coen as good as he maybe has along way to go before starting centrefield in a big game.

    If our centre fielders like Barry and Seamie sit in tight in midfield then it should allow Leeroy and Boyler/Durcan to attack .

    That where we can get the “legs” and pace back into the team with our traditional roaming and overlap creating halfbacks.
    Release the shackles off the halfbacks .

  25. But mayomad where are all the “better” footballers to come in.

    He has had a chance to work with our best group in many years. So while he gets the benefit of the doubt with some things results have simply been poor and the performances have been pretty flat. As somebody that called for his appointment I really want things to work out for him and agree that we don’t need a new manager but there will be warning lights if we were to lose 2/2 championship games at home and be out of the Championship before Carlow!!

    jr the panel will not be extended. There have been no additions and there won’t be. That’s why we have 34 to allow for injuries etc. If you are not training with the group you are of little value.

  26. The injuries are with older players. It happens.
    This is serious midfield championship stuff, only SOS, AOS and Barry Moran have the ability for it. We can’t be hoping the mobility of other options would count.
    Coen strikes me as a perfect no. 6. Stood beside Coen and he’s deceptive tall and strongly built. He then has that head up, punt kick nice and simple to the open option which I think is essential in a centre back.
    He won’t get ran through with his size.
    Pat Durcan I think is a great bench option for when Boyler starts tiring. Durcan can get a bit caught in traffic when the opposition are fresh. He’s a good shutdown merchant as well if yer thinking to clampdown on their fresh legs that come on up front.
    We just need to return to our tradituonal type of middle eight setup.

  27. I’d be worried why all the hamstrings inj s there has being quite a few Caff , loftus , d. O Connor , one or two more plus Tom now and then going down with cramp again Galway something is nt rite , time to bring Aidan out with seamie to midfield have d o Connor Kevin mc and loftus with Regan cillian and Andy in side with Coen freeman pushing hard too mayo need to win this and win it well no point saying Fermanagh are tough and be hard beat if mayo are thinking about beating or been able beat Kerry Dublin Tyrone Donegal then they should be puting them to the sword and if there not able do it then ya know their not good enough that’s not been cocky it’s just honest I expect mayo to be on their game and put Fermanagh away easier than people think people saying Fermanagh have corrigan and Quigly but mayo have class all over the field any word on chris Barrett mayo by 8 ?

  28. I’ve excised that rumour bit of your comment, Outside of boot. A rumour doesn’t have to be negative or vicious to be out of bounds, I don’t like the site to be used for spreading rumours of any kind.

  29. Inbetweener, I think Kirkby is going travelling for the summer, I suppose lads make their plans early in the year, in the last 3 years Castlebar have got to 2 All Ireland finalsfinals. So it’s hard to keep that up, can’t blame them for travelling, he was after all dropped from the Mayo panel . But Matthew Ruane is available, he certainly could be brought into the panel, I’d rate him at least good as SOS at this point in time and much better than AOS. Some posters keep saying this is not Rochfords panel, do ye think we’re talking about Man UTD, and Morihino, or Man City and Pep? . It’s time to be real here, Rochford may not have inherited the happiest camp in the world, but he certainly inherited best panel of players in Mayo history, Just a few months ago, Mayo U21s won the All Ireland, His cup is or certainly was over flowing. Our very very poor but very lucky league campaign, only Cork who beat us and Down were worse. Tipperary beat Cork, Down have never in my time been worse. So Rochford has along with the team take responsibility. I think the team(or sections of it) has managed Rochford more than he has managed the team. He should make the decisions . From here forward is what ultimately, Rochford and the Team will be judged on. Tom Parsons is a real loss, but not too many teams in Ireland have the luxury of Barry Moran, ready and waiting to come in. Barry has never let Mayo down. We also have Matthew Ruane waiting to come into the panel. It’s time for at least one or two players to be thanked for their services and be dropped from the panel . and I don’t include Andy Moran, Mayo can get something from Andy still. Sentiment will get us nowhere,!

  30. I sense that the spirits are flagging since I got back from sunny Verona…! So I’m going to cheer all up by predicting that the team will produce one of the finest performances of the year so far.And I’m forecasting that many who have been in doubtful mode since the Galway match will flagellate themselves a bit for their doubting minds and rightly so,for how could you and dare to imagine that there was anything real about that game?
    On Sat afternoon we re going to see so many one two threes and bang,that The MayO MayO Chorus will cause tsunamis above on the Great Lakes of Fermanagh. The reincarnation we’ll witness will bring a quality to the championship that has been so obviously missing. The return of the Mayo passion steel belief and class will put the willies up all of the aspiring contestants and even Marty Morrisseys vocabulary will undergo a miraculous refurbishment!!

  31. “But Matthew Ruane is available, he certainly could be brought into the panel, I’d rate him at least good as SOS at this point in time and much better than AOS.”

    Is this a joke??? Seriously? A man who played spring football at an underage level in a tournament run off over a few weeks!!!? Jesus wept

  32. Ger Bohan, I wouldnt use the term “better players” as that suggests there is a whole team out there waiting to step in. Like it or not this current panel peaked in 2013 and no amount of wishing is going to get them back to that standard, there is just too many miles on the clock for that. The hard running attacking fb line is also old hat, it will get past most teams but not the top sides. New tactics, varied attacking ideas and fresh blood are required. Rochford should be given the opportunity to develop a new side and be judged on that, not someone elses panel who are well passed their prime.

    There are players out there who can step up to the county setup. Ruane, S. Cuniffe, Flanagan, Reape, Conroy, Douglas, ruthledge, Farrell, DCoen, Duffy, O’Donaghue, Kirby, O’Reilly. The players are there, some have been harshly overlooked and should have been in the county setup long before now.

  33. Sad to see parsons out injured, I think he could play a similar role to that played by colm cavanagh for tyrone, we’re he plays as a sweeper in front of their full back. Hope to god the management has learnt that mcloughlin is not an effective sweeper. I can see our boys coming out hungry to prove we are not finished yet. hope diarmuid is back fit along with loftus. Barry and seamie should start midfield with aido at 11

  34. Ger Bohan, well that’s my opinion, you don’t have to like it. If you have seen something in AOS or SOS recently, will you enlightened the rest of us when that performance exactly was? I have nothing against either of these guys, if fact I’d like to see Seamus play. Neither has set the world alight recently, and AOS frankly shouldn’t have been playing for Mayo, such was his poor form. I don’t know if you can remember the County final. Matthew came on as a sub, for some mysterious reason been dropped. Let me tell you he was far more effective than any of the O Shea’s on that particular day. You could make the exact same point, you made about Mathew Ruane about Diarmod O Connor. Only last year you couldn’t say that about DOC because we didn’t have a successful run in the U21’s. I only have said he could be brought into the panel. Maybe you know of better available players as cover for Tom Parsons and Jason Gibbons…. Inbetweener, did you get to see the ‘ancient Roman Arena in Verona? Now that’s a place where you didn’t get any second chances. If you lost there, you never played again. No back door, there!

  35. Would anyone have any complaints with the following team?!
    1. Hennelly
    2. Harrison
    3. Keane
    4. Higgins
    5. Keegan
    6. Boyle
    7. Vaughan
    8. SOS
    9. AOS
    10. D O’Connor
    11. Doherty
    12. McLoughlin
    13. Regan
    14. Andy Moran
    15. C O’Connor

  36. Brendan, I would change Clarke for Hennelly, we cant have any more errors in goals.

  37. Lads time to get real, what Rochie has out there is the best available to him, or any other Mayo manager, some if the lads you discussed earlier arent even in the country mayomad, “never mind being harshly overlooked”

    S. Cuniffe(going/gone to USA)
    Duffy (USA)
    Kirby, (going Travelling)
    O’Reilly (were spoilt for choice in halfbacks)
    Rest bar some of the U21’s have had their chance previous and or didnt show to be top class when playing with Mayo Juniors .

  38. Leantimes were you in Limerick when Barry was taken off at half time or 2012 final or 2013 when he came on for 13 minutes and did not touch the ball. I think you just get better if don’t play for a while on this forum.

  39. This AOS slating will end up seeing him getting disinterested and then banished to the “he’s shi%e” and his career being ruined just like that of Ciaran Mc, Kevin O Neill, Brogan, Liam McHale, great players who all got unfair criticism despite their peers not performing either .

    You talk about AOS not playing well at 11 and not being good enough for the county, how unfair is that and frankly ridiculous, when did Doherty or McLoughlin last control a game ?

    Full forward line when AOS was in there bar Cillians performances who played better in there? No one, Regan is hot and cold, for every score there is a wide or two and he is yet to have an impact on the big stage I hope he does but fact remains AOS did so against the two toughest brothers in the game in the McGees, not only toughest brothers but All Stars .

    Out midfield he has also proven himself so what more do you want from the lad?
    Its unfair he is picked on time and time again when supposed heros like Freeman, Dillon , Richie Feeney whoever are unjustly dropped, they are dropped and not played for a reason, we have had 4 past manager all of whom have looked to build around AOS not these Blogsuperstars .

    I dont like highlighting peoples name but the abuse AOS is getting has gone too far .

  40. Best wishes to Tom for a speedy recovery. He will be surely missed on Saturday afternoon. Leantimes is taking the piss, in case anybody out there is wondering. SOS is one of the best, and had been for a long time now.

  41. Brendan good team but probably start Freeman and see if he’s up to it, if not, whats the point on him staying on the panel. If he not good enough now he wont be next year either he’s 26 or 27.Better an u 21 taking his place

  42. We will be fine without Parsons even though I rate him highly.
    Fermanagh are 4th or 5th in Ulster and playing away…a very limited team.
    I would be far more worried about winning this one and then becoming complacent again.
    In my view talk of Matthew Ruane is premature and talk of Matty Flanagan is silly.These boys make or may not make it but it certainly wont be this year.

  43. Agree with other posters about the alarming injury list.

    What is the story with Barry Solan?

    Has he had much face time with the players? Yes I know players are supposed to work on their own to a programme, but you need face to face contact. I remember seeing Ed Coughlan do a one hour session with Aido after the London CF and by God he put him through the wringer. In the QF against Donegal Aido had one of the finest performances by a Mayo player in Croker. Are players getting this type of personal attention at the moment?

    Hope I´m wrong by miles, but I keep having a sinking feeling about the present situation, all asects of it.

  44. See rte are showing the match . Hope that does not affect the attendance. I have said it here before that this team needs us now more than ever ,, let’s get there in huge numbers and be heard roaring our team on …..

  45. I’d go with that Mayoman but would have Durkan in for Vaughan, Brendan. It’ll be like that anyway and it doesn’t matter much. The most important man on the field on sat will be the little man inside their heads.Will they each play their own game strolling around or go about their business with pace,pattern,pluck and precision? Will we take them on and with plenty of bite or sit back and expect it to happen? If the former it ll be a quiet trip home for us.I would think though its quite reasonable to expect the latter!
    Yes Leantimes…the Arena had the pleasure of our company for two nights. Nowadays you get as many chances as you are willing to pay for…first night, Carmen and then Aido or I mean Aida next night!!!! A bit greedy I know but when in Verona do as the Veronese do!!!! Hopefully the McHale Arena will witness something like the same thrill on sat.

  46. Agree totally with Ger Bohan. There was not one word about injuries last year yet the management were heavily criticized and the physio team replaced.

  47. Outside of boot, would those players that are travelling have stayed if picked for the panel, I would think so. New blood will have to be introduced to keep the team fresh and provide real competition for places, thats the secret of Dublins success. Everyone on the Dublin team know if they have a poor game they will be replaced, that competition isnt in the Mayo setup. I would be looking to see Loftus, Caralon and Reape feature on Saturday. Reape has to be ready, why else is he there with Irwin, Conroy and Sweeney sitting at home. like it or not rebuilding of the panel is required, Rochford has to put his mark on it, bring in players he wants.

  48. I would like Irwin into brought into the panel .He is a natural forward and has a bit of power.

    Freeman would start in my team. Hennelly was instructed to go short with his kick

    outs.Maybe not completely fair to blame him when this was his instructions.

    Clarke can not make any mistakes when he is not playing but if he was to get the nod

    I would have no problem

    Cluxton is the only keeper who I would trust with the short kick outs and only in Croake

    Park where there is plenty of room.

    Other than that I think Rochford has the best available to him in the panel .

    Maybe more from the under 21’s next year if they put in the work over the winter

    I think Rochford and his helpers were very poor/slow on the line the last day. We

    continued with the sweeper to the end even though we need scores urgently in the last

    quarter. He was very slow to make changes . Not a good sign . How would he be if it

    was a All ireland Final and all the pressure associated with it. Where was his selectors

  49. Joe Irwin, of course I was at all those matches! . Your going back a few years there. I have in the meantime seen Barry playing a few times for club and county, he won a few MotM awards for the match Mitchles in their run to the All Ireland final since, I’m certain he was close to another MotM award V Donegal last year in the championship quater final. I agree he was poor in Limerick. But I think he had a good game the 2012 All Ireland final, he has been always played exceptional V Donegal, he actually won the MotM award our last league match of 2015. ,Easter Sunday again V Donegal. My respect for Barry is based on him actually playing, subsequent to the matches you, in one case correctly and in one case incorrectly, suggest he played badly.. Inbetweener, I was only there once, the Arena in Verona , and like you it was for : ‘The Aida ‘ but Pavarotti was singing, that’s going back a few years now!

  50. Tom Parsons is a big loss for sure. However the team and players (especially the fring ones) will have to see this as an opportunity and someone is going to have to step into the void at some stage.

    Maybe it’s time to bring in some new blood to that area in the form of Diarmuid O’Connor as a hard running midfielder to take on the opposition.

    Playing him alongside someone seasoned like SOS or Barry Moran would be my preference to offer the mobility and speed required now for this crucial area.

    I

  51. I too hope to see Carolan and Loftus and young blood but fact of matter is Dublin dont pick U-21’s bar the odd one or two, we havent the pick they have, which is fair enough but lets the young lads be young lads have pints enjoy themselves as being an Intercounty footballer is some commitment now, too much so, too professional in my opinion but bar maybe Irwin I think Rochfords has the best squad he could have .
    I would probably have Shane McHale in for the injured Caff but thats it .
    I hope the lads play as well as they can, then we will win and all this squabbling and dark cloud over county will be gone (for time being)

    Look there is alot of pressure on them having ousted the last management so up to them to prove their worth now. But in all reality the dirty diesel should be blown out and with the return of Diarmuid and maybe Andy we will be a far stronger team .

  52. Outside, im not calling for players to be brought in now this year, but next year the panel will need freshening up and the young players already on the panel do need game time.

    Dublin only bring in one or two thats true but they do it every year. There has been a very poor introduction of players to the mayo senior team over the years, a large portion of the existing panel played in the Longford game. Even the worst of the U21 teams over the past 6 years had a couple of good players in it. We are great at harvesting successful underage teams but poor at bringing on individual players. This will result in wholesale changes to the existing panel in the near future.

  53. PJ, McManus, I most certainly am not taking the piss, and in case anyone out there is wondering. Everybody reading would be a well able to figure it out for themselves. Any point I have made, I have backed it up by hard evidence. … I agree with you that SOS is one of the best and has been for a long time, but I would rate Matthew Ruane as good as him nowadays. Matthew may not be as battle hardened as Seamus, but I think he’s more skilful, much less likely to run into a tackle, I think he is is faster…. A problem with Mayo has been some players consistently running into tackles,. The game had evolved in the last few years,. Dublin is where the bar is at. Intelligence, pace, fluency.,.. Brian Fenton would come out second best in hand to hand of yesteryear conventional midfield battle to Seamus OShea.. . But his mobility, and game intelligence would mean that he is currently a greater asset to the Dublin than SOS to Mayo… . Now SOS is a fine athlete and I think he can play the game both ways. But mobility is thumping brute strength the way the game is played by the top teams at the moment! . Has anyone noticed how the Tyrone game has evolved since last year?. Pretty damm impressive I’d say. The national pundits seem to be talking about Tyrone now as the pretenders to the Dublin throne!.. Mayo cannot afford to be behind the scenes curve!

  54. Agree 100% with Outside of the boots last post. Aidan seems to be the scape goat for the worst Mayo performance in 6 years, which is totally unfair. The whole team wer shite that day parsons, higgins, doherty, robbie, cillian, the list is endless.

    I tell ye one thing, AOS could make 30k plus if he went out to the US for a few weeks playing a bit of ball, (and I wouldnt blame him with the shite thats been said about him), maybe then if he left the panel, people would realise the beast of a player we had. He gets no protection from referees, the manager seems clueless in how to get the best out of him, it must be pretty demoralising!!. Imo there are two ways you play AOS:

    1) You start him at chf, he gives a dig out to midfielders for kickouts, give him the ball in space, where he can draw 2/3 defenders towards him. He must release the ball before the tackles come in, a quick give and go preferrably to Diarmuid/Kmac who are running at pace and before you know it we are in the scoring zone. Place him in the cb area when we are trying to close out a game.

    2) Start him at FF, but do not isolate him, keep Cillian and Regan/Andy/Freeman close to him at all times (this should stop teams triple marking him and if they do, send it towards cillian or whoever) as their has to be space left somewhere. Deliver diagonal ball infront of him where he has to run onto it, running onto high ball will give him momentum when he lands, which should make it easier for him to engineer enough space to quickly release the ball to cillian/regan, who have timed their runs and receive the ball at speed. They either shoot for a point or head straight for goal, hopefully getting a shot away or getting fouled for an easy free.

    I think he’s too slow for midfield, tom, seamie, barry and coen are more mobile and better suited to modern day midfield play.

  55. Juan, I would agree mostly with what you are saying. Aido is an important player and on his day is a force of mature. Personnally i think he is a midfielder but I would have no problem with him at chf as in your point no 1. But you hit the nail on the head, he must release the ball before the tackle, he has to be aware of the support runners and lay it off. He is getting fouled at times but not as much as people think, alot of the time the defenders are standing their ground and he is hold/charging. defences have done their homework on him and know to crowd him out and force the turnover. He needs to release to ball more to be effective at chf.

  56. Time for Rochy to step up, change what is not working on the day, leave Donnie on bench and Hennelly as well, Clarke for the goal and Shane Nally at Half Back, rest of the team ‘ take your inspiration from Boyler , Tom Parsons immense and hope he recovers soon, love to see his type of play, see ye all in c’bar mayoabu

  57. I thank my lucky stars that it’s not this forum that picks the team or we’d be running out with a bunch of 19 year olds! A lot of the u21’s that people have been calling for are miles off in terms of strength and conditioning for senior intercounty football. Calling for Matthew Ruane whose not long 20 to start ahead of Aiden or seamie is downright lunacy. If you see these guys standing together you’d see they’re totally different animals at this stage of their lives. There’s a huge difference between u21 and senior so please leave the young lads until they’re ready. If the right team is picked and the right tactics are in play we should be too strong for Fermanagh. We have a lot of options currently in the panel(apart from the full back line).

  58. AOS is a serious player. Every sports person/athlete has a dip in form. In time he will rediscover it. In the meantime, even below par he is worth his place on the pitch. We need him, we all want to see him succeed. The reason he gets more stick is because of his talent. He is more in the spotlight than others. When Aido plays well, we usually win.

    You can see the hugely varied opinion on players here on this forum. Different opinion makes for interesting debate sure, but let’s remember we are supporters. Time to support the team a bit more. Be vocal. Get involved. Most people who post on here are probably dedicated followers of Mayo but lots of people who go to games aren’t, get onto them, the people you know, to firstly go to the game but also to get behind the team. It’s been said before, just showing up to the match isn’t enough.

  59. AND… We shouldn’t have to wait for things to be going well on the pitch to become vocal. It’s easy to roar and cheer when the team is buzzing. Support is required when things aren’t going well. What if Fermanagh get s good start on Sat…or if things are tight and we’ve kicked a few too many wides, will we revert to the muted silence again?? It’s just not good enough.

  60. Well said mayonaize, lift the rafters off, let the lads know the supporters are there.

  61. Clarke
    Harrison
    Keane
    Higgins
    Keegan
    Coen
    Boyle
    S o shea
    B moran
    Mcloughlin
    A o shea
    D o Connor
    Regan
    Freeman
    C o Connor.
    This is the team I would put out to get the job done.Obviously if injuries weren’t so plentiful I would have Higgins in the half forwards and Chris Barrett slots in. Paddy Durcan unlucky but seems to thrive off the bench.Need to start playing football again and look at a more orthodox 6 which is Coen.If the opposition was different like Dublin or Kerry than we may have to look at Higgins or Kevin Mc Loughlin sweeping.

  62. Bestsince51, that would be my selection aswell, im a campaigner for Keith in the forwards, but your right, we need him back there for this game.

  63. Have to agree with Leant ime on his posts. I having a good laugh here reading about players form in 2012 13 and 14 – time moves on. Really cannot understand what Clarke has done wrong apart from getting ng injured to deserve being overlooked.
    If it was me I’d start COS at MF and give AOS a break. This is a perfect opportunity for him to show his worth and prove the doubters wrong. I’d bring in McHales at FF as he had a stormer in 96 and was without equal for 2 years.
    Face it bloggers – our goose is cooked and the biggest conjob in the history of the game is being perpetrated on the Mayo fans for the last 40 years. Ill be there like a fool with my family cheering on the G and R but Fermanagh are 7 to 1 to win and if I was not a Mayo man I’d be backing them to win.

  64. I think Aidan O Shea will come good on Saturday. He is a very powerful player and a real asset to any team. He hasn’t been at his best lately and there are aspects of his play that need to improve (and indeed are easily improved with a little coaching). As to what might or might not be going on off the field of play I do not know but this again involves good management.
    It boils down to this – either we are good enough on the field and on the line or we are not. Saturday will tell a lot either way. I see it as a great opportunity for redemption – a chance to silence the critics and give other teams in the championship something to worry about. I can’t see these lads turn down the opportunity to put things right. I expect a serious backlash and expect them to beat Fermanagh with a bit to spare. If they’re not up to it well then it’s time to move on and be thankful for the good years.

  65. A lot of good thinking there Mayomad Juan and Lean Times.
    Juan….your two points are spot on but sure both roles have been filled by A at different times. People have suggested that he has been moved around too much to the detriment of his game. They say he should be left in the one spot which he can make his own….FF…CHF…MF…even CHB!!! Reminds me of what A Egan went through years ago in a different way in a different age. This debate is happening because of the absence of a fluidity which hadnt visited this team properly since its existence. It’s the reason imp why we haven’t won out on the big occasions. We nearly got there a few times and when you look at it, it’s been nearly always due to some individuals excellence rather than the teams overall balance.
    So I’m saying that the focus is too much on who should be playing,and playing where and not enough on the nature of that play.As far as I ve been seeing in recent times there is a serious inability to run proper lines,kick proper angles, to time runs which all result in bottlenecks and loss of possession! Running off the ball now is as imp as running with the ball if a positive result is to ensue.
    Wasnt it Kevin Heverin who used two screens to show what fellas should be doin when not on the ball?
    A OS can play anywhere successfully imp ,if he and the mates are singing from the same sheet and in tune….and if they’re harmonising there’s no doubt but they will succeed at the very highest level.Im looking forward to seeing some of this tuneful harmony taking home the laurels on Saturday !

  66. IMO, Juan posted at 5.59 the plain and simple truth. We expect miracles and the player has not been coached on releasing the ball and the lack of support when he’s at ff. It’s beyond frustrating to watch and must drive aos nuts.
    It’s very simple, aos is a big player for Mayo, he is very important if we have any intentions of doing something but we need to have it set up for him. If he’s at ff, there’s got to be support nearby to accept the knock down or quick pass while there’s 3 defenders around him and the hf line have to be able to hit 40 meter passes to him, otherwise we are wasting our time. If he’s at chf, great, let him hit it in long or else do the give and go stuff that he does so well on occasion.

    We have the answers if only we read them.

  67. Here here everybody!! I think we re all saying the same thing.So all in to McHale on sat and the first time we hear some gom shouting Mayo Mayo let us all join in without lookin to see who is watching! Better still, if you ve got a big bellows of a roar then let you be the one to scrape the paint off the roof!

  68. Leantimes you obviously didn’t see Murphy goal or tackle on the player who kicked the ball in take a look please half hearted tackle in first 10 minutes a joke . And the big day passed him by when all the county players bar Durkan never showed up, its happened way to often on the big day way to often!!!

  69. Well said there Juan and Dave in relation to Aidan O’Shea. How to get the best out of Aidan will be key for this game. I’d prefer to see him starting at no. 11 as the way the game has gone playing himself and Seamie together in midfield would just see Fermanagh try to run the legs off the O’Shea brothers as the Dubs did in the 2013 final. I don’t think Seamie and Barry playing together in midfield would be a good idea either for the same reason. Also I don’t think we should make the same mistake as we made against Dublin in the replay last year, having no midfield cover on the bench. With Barry Moran only back from injury it would probably be best to keep him as back-up for midfield and if needs be he would be an option to throw in at full-forward if we are in major trouble late in the game.

    With Tom Parsons injured I’d give Coen a shot in midfield with Seamie. Ideally I would have preferred to see Coen at no. 6 and playing sweeper when needed but for this game to give us some extra mobility around the middle of the field I reckon he would be a good option. It would be a very big ask for him but I think he would be up to the task. Dublin have the perfect balance in Bastic and Fenton at midfield, Seamie and Stephen Coen, could do the same for us.

    The injury situation is a big worry, especially when you now have extra elements like the black card in vogue. For example if Kevin Keane got back carded after five minutes, who do we play at full-back. I would have preferred to see a specialised full-back and another midfielder called into the squad as back-up. Having to move Lee Keegan to full-back in the Galway game when Keane went off injured was a disaster.

  70. If Mayo are to win we need a big games from cillian he being being a bit quiet last to games.

  71. Joe Irwin,.. Karl Lacey kicked the ball into Murphy, Alan Dillons man, Barry came off his man to attempt the block down, it’s hardly a surprise that someone so agile as Karl Lacey sidestepped Barry . the question should be, why was Lacey get so much room in the first place?? ! I don’t understand the rest of your post, I did see what actually happened, just as I did see most of the other matchs involving Mayo. The only Durkan, playing that Day was the Donegal Goalkeeper, How that has any relevance. I don’t know?

  72. Leantimes he’s never showed on the big day and the results is no All Ireland medals sorry that i had to spell it out to you

  73. Bestsince 51. Interesting selection there, my question would be who will replace SOS or Moran at midfield if they get injured, carded, or start to get tired. We should start with a view of having our best team on the field at the end of the game. What do we carry a large squad for. Its a simple tactic that’s been implemented by Dublin and Kerry for years with great success. We only have to look at the team Dublin finished with last year compared to Mayo.

  74. Your still wrong there Joe, Barry Moran does have an All Ireland medal. 2006 u21.and he would be the MotM award that day as well. I think the Castlebar team failed badly last March in Croker. But I think wouldn’t put it in all down to Barry,!

  75. Joe Irwin – wind your neck back in there, like a good man. This isn’t a place for picking arguments so less of this “sorry that i had to spell it out to you” stuff.

  76. Your right there Leantimes and its being Leantimes since. No it wasn’t all his fault, but he is a county player and you would not have taught that?

  77. We are not too short-handed in midfield. You have AOS, SOS, Barry Moran, Stephen Coen and Donie Vaughan. Even Diarmuid O Connor could do a job there if required. He’d keep any opponent busy for 70 mins if he was fuly fit. In fact I reckon that might well be his position in the future.

  78. Very few on here can offer realistic constructive criticism of any individual player. Most of the players at this stage have had the benefits (and drawbacks) of successful season getting to withing kicking distance of winning.

    These same guys will have to take it on themselves as to why they have not won an All Ireland by now. And also deal with the bigger question management have to ask if can some of these continue to operate at the top level to push the team over the line ?

    What makes the difference?

  79. Injuries might force the team to pick itself.

    Best players in their best positions should sort most of the starting lineup.

    Niall Mac is right about strength n condition work taking a few years to make a player into a county specimen.

    You can put in one or two younger models to add mobility, too many and you just get pushed aside.

  80. Lots losing a bit of focus here. Whatever team is picked it will be the best available. I trust Rochford on that.

    I hope positional adjustments are correct this time.

    Time now to forget the bickering and speculation and support the lads. They need backing by us supporters now more than at any time in the last 6 years.

  81. Pj Mc manus I agree totally especially when S o Shea lost the head in Croker last year we had no one on the bench because for some bizarre reason Gibbons was dropped.Yes we are scarce in that regard and I suppose your looking at A o Shea than to come out.I liked the look of Ruane at u21 level so I certainly think he should be on the panel or if your starting coen at 6 than you bring Paddy Durcan in and move Coen to the middle.Thats all I can think of but I agree and Parsons is a huge loss.

  82. Diehard I was thinking the same thing, Diarmuid O’Connor could very well end up playing at midfield and in fact could be useful there this Saturday. He has the engine, positional sense, can smell danger and drop back when required, is a very good ball carrier and can get ok the end of a move to pick a score. I think Coen will inevitably be our no.6. It’s more a matter of when not if. From that u21.team (midfielders) it’ll be interesting to see how Ruane develops and I’ve heard good things about young Duffy from Balla.

    Isn’t it funny, there’s hardly been a mention of Cillian in any post. Maybe he’ll have a big game on Sat.

  83. My team for Saturday:
    D.Clarke
    B.Harrison K.Keane K.Higgins

    L.Keegan C.Boyle D.Vaughan

    S.Coen B.Moran

    D.O’Connor A.O’Shea K.Mcgloughlin

    E.Regan A.Freeman C.O’Connor

    Jason Doherty is a bit unlucky but I think Kevin Mcgloughlin is a more consistent performer and I would not be surprised if Andy started ahead of Freeman. If we’re gonna use a sweeper in this game it’s gotta be B.Moran. He was outstanding playing this role against donegal last year so when we’re defending we can move him back in front of Keane. This can allow A.O’Shea to move into midfield to help out coen. When we attack we could allow Barry to sit back and allow our wingbacks to bomb forward to support our attack. Mcgloughlin and diarmuid would run up and down the field all day long to support defence and attack which would be a great asset. Move cillian out to centre forward. He’s much more influential in this position and can pick out some great passes to Freeman and regan who linked up very well in the league game against Down. Whenever Aidan gets the ball we need him to drive at the defence because he’ll always draw two or three players towards him so then he could offload the ball a lot quicker. We need to use our bench quickly and effectively the next day. If this team was picked I’d bring on Doherty,S.O’shea,Durcan,Andy,Dillon and either loftus or Nally with 20 minutes to go to bring experience and freshness to our play. Hopefully this is the way we can play on Saturday!

  84. People are going on about how this is Horans team and not rochfords, that is daft talk as these are the best players we have in the county at this moment and time.
    And in relation to Aidan o shea, he hasnt played well since the Sligo game last year so i dont no what people are going on about with the ‘when he plays well we usually win’ quote. We played our best football against monaghan in the league when he was black carded.

  85. Hennelly

    Harrison Keane Higgins

    Keegan Boyle Durcan

    S O Shea. A O Shea

    D O Connor C O Connor K Mcloughlin

    E Regan A Freeman J Doherty

    Is how I see Mayo starting on Saturday night S Coen,A Moran,Vaughan,Dillion,B Moran to be brought on. I presume loftus and Barrett are still out injured?

  86. Hope you don’t mind Willie Joe but I’m putting out an SOS for all Mayo supporters to get behind OUR team on Saturday. We need to get behind the team like never before I’m putting up a post later on #seaofgreenandred page I’ve been on to the banter page and Mayo Club 51 also. We are all in this together let’s get everyone to please bring a flag encourage the team and to make our home venue count . We all agree the supporters didn’t too much either the day against Galway if after 5 fantastic years we can’t show our appreciation and that we still want them to win then we’re not much supporters are we? If after 5 years it ends on Saturday then let’s go out loud & proud ! Our time as supporters is NOW there’s strength in numbers! The team need to be strong on Saturday so do we!

  87. Well said Livenhope ,,, our turn to stop typing and get that passion back into the stand and terraces ,,, it does make a difference ,,

  88. My first game in Croker with Mayo was 1967 against Meath in the AISF. That day we played John Morley at CHB despite recovering from an appendix operation. I have seen lots of selection mistakes since. This is the first team I have seen with a bit of toughness-every successful team has a few hard men on board.now is the time for the players to stand up.

  89. Interesting headlines in the Mayo News and Western People from BJ Padden and James Horan.

    Horan – Kill or be Killed
    Padden – All or Nothing for Mayo

    Both talk about the legacy of this team. Do they want to let it end with two losses at home to Galway and Fermanagh? Is this where all the sacrifices and hard work leads to?

    I think that gives us a sense of where we’re at and what is on the line this Saturday. There’s pressure there but there’s also a real sense of expectation. I just can’t see these guys not raging against the dying of the light.

    All about experience, character and belief on Saturday evening. Do the experienced campaigners have the will to go again and do the younger guys have to confidence to step up?

  90. While I agree support is vital on Saturday and that this team and indeed all Mayo teams deserve it , I find it tedious people giving out about supporters not shouting loud enough or starting online campaigns.Mayo have great support home and abroad but sometimes that support is actually non critical and that does not help the team at all.
    This bunch of players owe nothing to Mayo but it is ludicrous to imply the supporters have been lacking.Outside of Dublin we bring probably the most support consistently.What we lack os the ability to be realistic as our optimism sometimes runs away with us.
    We are now only beginning to address failings that people in others counties complained about for ages.
    Time we were less sensitive and more critical without of course sinking to the personal level of attacking players.I dont agree with that at all.

  91. hueyandlouis, i was in the stand against Galway and it was very muted, it was embarrassing, there was a line of supporters in front looking like i had 2 heads and giving out when I was roaring my team on, those are the kind of supporters who only go to 1 game a year and we can do without on Saturday. They didnt get behind the team when needed, we need massive vocal support on Saturday and cheer our lads on a winning trajectory again.

  92. The supporters could have been standing up roaring until they were hoarse and we still wouldn’t have beaten Galway – that wasn’t what lost it.
    We, as supporters, like to feel involved in ‘the journey’ that the team goes on, and to a certain extent we are, but let’s not over-estimate our importance to the team’s performance!
    The hours and hours of preparation in training and gym work and lifestyle over months and years is what really counts, not if Mary and Jack in the stand are screaming “Come on Mayo!” enough.
    If it’s a tight game in the final few minutes I’d agree it can have an affect (on the referee as much as the players), but that’s about it.

  93. Any word on when the team will be picked. Hopefully the bench will be listed too.

  94. Gibbons and Cafferkey out for the year, add in at least another 1 inevitable injury somewhere along the line we are starting to look thin.

    I’d presume our only midfield option is the 2 x O’Sheas.

    COC needs to be in the HF line, he has become to immobile and easy to defend in the corner. Despite what some people say A.Moran needs to start, he is a proven ball winner and good ball into him he can offload to the runners.

    We need to go back to basics and the time for experimenting is over (but I feel based on Rochfords interview he will spring some surprise?).

    Maybe he will throw B.Moran into FF.

  95. Aidan, I was the one who said when AOS plays well we usually win and I stand by it. Do you not think he played well against Donegal?? He scored a result defining goal just before HT. He scored a heap in the sligo game and caused havoc in the Galway full back line earlier in the year (being consistently fouled).

    This season:- We were very average in the league this year. Not many of our regulars played consistently well throughout the league with the exceptions of Boyle, Caff, Diarmuid and possibly Kev (free taking apart).

    Anyway.. It’s just an opinion. Roll on sat.

    On the supporters issue:- I don’t think anyone who is promoting a louder and more active involvement from supporters is suggesting that it has a large bearing on what goes on between the white lines… What is being suggested is that too many are showing up muted. Support can make a difference. It can drive on a team. It can influence a ref. In short, if you’re going to the game bloody well get vocal.

  96. People are forgetting that when AOS wore the Irish jersey vs Australia last autumn he gave a masterful performance, the stand out player on the field. Dublin outfoxed Mayo in 2013 but for first 25 mins we dominated all sectors including midfield. That was on a day when it was 23 degrees and Cluxton gave his greatest performance for Dublin with quality of kickouts.
    Besides that Aido has been very good in midfield for us and Fermanagh believe they are strong there.
    Of teams named I would have Andy on in FF, that was his position in 2012 and he was causing havoc there all that year before his injury and recent 3-6 from play for club suggests he’s in flying form. I would also have Freeman on too which probably means Cillian at CHF as Regan deserves to play based on last game. Freeman could alternate full and corner with Andy as he also seems best at FF. If either not playing well just swap their positions.
    When subbing on midfielders later in game AOS could push up and be a holding forward either at 11 or 14.
    If both 100% fit I would prefer Barry to SOS, but if the latter could add a bit more nous to his high workrate would get the nod. Barry had poor game in 2013 but if I recall was coming back from injury. These are big men and when injured seem to take longer to return because so much mobility required off them in the modern game. I expect SOS to get the nod as he’s been back longer than Barry. Coen is a gamble as are Nally and Donie whereas the lads who’ve played there a lot have usually outperformed their rivals.
    I prefer Durkan to Donie because he could be future star and is the one risk I’d take but if Donie gets the chance to return he could well grab it. That would be oldish team but I think pick the best 15 from now as it’s knockout, young lads can be brought in if going well. Goalie I’m 50 50, usually the lad with jersey keeps it and good for continuity.

  97. I second that call to turn out early on Saturday with colours and be vocal. This team have given us supporters great days in the past and our time is here.

  98. If we re thinking of going far this summer we need to close out this game as soon as possible and there’s no reason we can’t.
    Quit the bullshit tactics and play our running game bring back our high intensity tackling build up a lead and bring on a few young bucks.
    Rochford has to be cute with some players because if we can keep winning game by game its full on football week after week and we can’t afford anymore injury’s.
    I expecting a big performance Saturday let’s get behind them

  99. I’ve been meaning to make this point about vocal support for the team. I think that when they were on a rising curve it would have been somewhat more expected from Mayo supporters to let go with abandon in the stands. Dublin obviously have the most standout bunch of followers on the go and why wouldnt they? In the first place the Dub follower has been raised in a culture of support for a long time and as well the Dub probably is more demonstrative and uninhibited as an individual than their nice gentile counterparts born and bred across the grand verdant plains of Muigheo.Their support also has been augmented and replenished year after year by their teams successes for what seems like an eternity. And still, on reflection it has been noted occassionally that the great sea of blue has taken on a certain degree of murkiness when things haven’t been going too well. Such is the inherent nature of team vocal support.
    The vocal presence exhibited by a bunch of fans therefore, imo,is not at all a complete measure of a teams support. Their willingness to be in the stands and terraces in large numbers in all sorts of conditions and in all sorts of places is the prime indicator of support for a team. The vocal element is a companion closely related to team performance which I think is understood and accepted by both players and fans.
    I ‘ll be surprised though if the above trend is not somewhat tweeked by the fans as the Mayo team makes its way onto the park sometime after three on Saturday. The team will know themselves that something special is required and fans will know also that this game is of AI importance! The circumstance of the occasion ought to be a spur for all.The athmosphere will indeed be very interesting to be a part of. It’s a unique event really for this team and one not to be missed!

  100. Regarding all the posts about the crowd and making noise. The Galway game was noticably mute even from when the team ran onto rhe pitch. No one really knows if it has an influence on the outcome of the game but it does create a positive atmosphere which may translate onto the pitch. If those who are advocating bringing the roar and noise throughout the game, I would suggest taking over one of the terraces behind a goal. There is a reason the Kop, The Stratford End, Hill 16 are intimidating. A smaller area packed with hardcore fans who can stand, jump around, sing, wave the flags. The main stand, sitting down isnt the place to create an intimidating noisey atmosphere

  101. I have an ominous feeling about Saturday afternoon. Fermanagh are no mugs and are a match for a lot of teams under Pete Mc Grath. If we do win it will be interesting to see the manner of the win and its also a test for the extended panel going forward. Kerry may have played poorly last Sunday but when their subs started coming on, it showed the strength of their panel, we look a bit threadbare in comparison.

  102. Tough game on Sat but hopefully we can pull through. Its by far the hardest draw we could have got but at the same time if we are not beating Fermanagh at home we are better off out of the championship. I see some poster commenting that we should concentrate on what we are good at. I agree with this, its time to stop looking at tactics that we will use “if” we meet Dublin, that can be done in training. Lets take it one game at a time from now on. Hopefully we will see a back lash after what happened in the Galway game and we can put our season back together. I refuse to believe that this team is finished, they have way too much talent.

  103. When you think about it last year, until the Sligo match in the Connacht final, we had been playing pretty much in fits and starts too. You’d like to see us go out with the same mentality on Saturday, as we did in that game, i.e. going for it from the start. There is no way that Fermanagh will be as open at the back as Sligo but you’d love to see us playing in an attacking mode from the start.

    In relation to the support at the games, I was watching a sports chat show one night and they were talking to former lady tennis players. One of the players was talking about playing on Centre Court Wimbledon in a big match in front of the home crowd. She said that when things were going well, it was great but when things were not going so well she could hear all of the loud gasps coming from the crowd if she missed an easy shot etc. Us as Mayo supporters probably do the same thing too, when we miss chances etc. So maybe if we could be a more encouraging crowd this weekend, if that makes sense. It might help us.

  104. Ok support is great and all and this team deserves all the support they can get but Galway had feck all support in Castlebar maybe 1500 and they beat us by being cute and taking their scores. Its time for this team to man up and take the game by the scruff of the neck. It’s not the supporters it’s not the manager and it’s not the referee even tho we were robbed in Limerick but at the end of the day it’s up to the manager to motivate the team sufficiently and then ultimately up to the team to perform

  105. well said Backdoor Sam…time to man up and stuff it down the nay sayers throats…

  106. Yep the naysayers are really doin my head in. Would really appreciate a run riot Performance with the fuckin hinge comin off the dressing room door at mchale park. We’ve got it in us i know we have. Hon mayo the time has come now.

  107. My team for Saturday

    Clarke
    Harrison
    Keane
    Higgins
    Keegan
    Coen
    Boyle
    S o shea
    B moran
    Mcloughlin
    A o shea
    D o Connor
    Regan
    Andy Moran
    C o Connor.

  108. Lots of peoples prefered teams being posted, most have valid reasons for there selection. Common threads through out seems to be Higgins back to cb and AOS not at ff. Both are sensible choices for me.personally I would like to see the following line out ,

    Hennelly
    Harrison, Keane, Higgins
    Keegan, McLoughlin, Boyle
    AOS, Coen
    Loftus, COC, DOC
    Regan, Freeman, Reape

  109. Half packed mchale park is useless and looks shite. I really wish the gaa in general would look to promotimg the games better. Its all well and good saying its only the corporate end of things in hq is all that matters but there wont be much attraction there either if this trend continues into the next decade. Freebies galore that’s what they should be doing, family specials, some kind of entertainment on in the pitch beside beforehand something like they do canal end in croker. These occasions could be a lot bigger imo

  110. Livenhope, behind you all the way on this and we will be beside you on Saturday.

    Let those who want to sit down quietly elsewhere do so, but woe betide anyone who looks at us sideways on Saturday like the last day for getting behind our team!!

  111. Mayonaze – He won one ball in that game but mcgee had upperhand for majority of game and Sligo game irrelavent as they were shocking.
    Has knowone the balls to tell him to release the ball before contact? Time and time again he runs into the tackle. It is so frustating and easy to defend against my god. Something has to change.
    Also why on earth do we play a one man full forward? Its so easy to defend against and people are giving out then that our forwards arent scoring..is it any wonder?

  112. Nice to know it is okay to sit down quietly elsewhere. I promise to look only straight ahead. Would not want to upset the real supporters.

  113. Tubberman is correct.

    Crowd have minimal effect on players who have been on the go for years.

    Maybe a lift coming onto the pitch but after that, the game is the game.

    If we must play a sweeper would Higgins work?

  114. Findini, I often thought that I would have loved to see Keith get a run out at no. 7 rather than in the half-forward line, if he was to be moved from corner back. If Chris Barrett was available then it would have been worth a shot. You would have the best of both worlds then with Keith in that position. When defending he could be used as a sweeper with a midfielder or wing forward covering along the half-back line. Then when we would be attacking he could be used as an attacking wing back, picking out those lovely diagonal passes into our full-forward line, again with a midfielder or wing forward covering back. It would be interesting to see him play that role sometime.

  115. Now that Chilcot has got the easier job out of the way with the Iraq enquiry, perhaps he can start work on what’s gone wrong in Mayo football. He could certainly get a few opinions from this site.

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