Poll: how will Sunday’s semi against Derry go?

Mayo v Derry

Photo: Mayo Mick

Going on the poll that’s just concluded (i.e. who do you think will win the League?), this is likely to be one where the outcome is apparent before the question is asked. I mean, seeing as 66% of you think we’re going to lift the NFL title later this month compared to just 1% who think Derry will (with 17% opting for Dublin and 16% for Cork), it should follow – if you lot are being in any sense consistent when voting – that the vast majority of you will also go for a win for us this Sunday. Maybe not 86% of you, as was the case for the match against what turned out to be the Oak Leafers B team last Sunday, but then again the bookies are quoting us at just 8/15 for this one so there should be a fairly palpable air of optimism from our side heading into the game.

Anyway, enough surmising on my part – how do you think Sunday’s semi-final against Derry will go?

How will Sunday's League semi-final against Derry go?

  • Win (80%, 207 Votes)
  • Lose (17%, 43 Votes)
  • Draw (3%, 9 Votes)

Total Voters: 259

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28 thoughts on “Poll: how will Sunday’s semi against Derry go?

  1. Fancy a Mayo win WJ. Think we are motoring quite well despite what some of my fellow posters think. Mayo by four. Hoping to see plenty of Mayo people roaring our lads on

  2. Like last Sunday, I think those adds are nuts and anyone who thinks that Sundays game will be relatively easy for us is in for a rude awakening.
    Firstly, Derry will have no fear or inferiority complex about coming to Croke Park next Sunday as they won the div 2 final there last year. Secondly, they have an accomplished experienced manager who has improved every side he has been in charge of and one who his players always seem to speak very highly of. There is no doubt that the players under McIvers stewardship will give their all for him. Thirdly, northern county teams have a tremendous record of success in Croke Park going right back to the 60’s where Down first made the breakthrough. Be it Down, Donegal, Derry, Armagh or Tyrone, they just come down to Croker, win and go home. No bullshit talk of curses, or who-dos, or refereeing decisions, or mental fragility. They play their game their way and more often than not come away with a victory. I believe that northern counties are mentally much tougher than most other counties, certainly us, and they have no qualms about playing anyone in Croke Park. They generally have a cockiness and a steely edge to their mind set that gives them great belief in their own game plan and that it will work.
    Everyone is saying that we will see a different Mayo side and a much stronger one but you must remember that they made 14 changes to their side for last Sundays game, we only had 5 or 6 missing from what could be considered our first choice 15 and yet we were unconvincing. Like last years league campaign, we are playing in 10 to 15 min spells during our games. When we click and are playing well we are blowing away sides e.g. Westmeath, Cork, Kerry and for periods v Dublin. However when we switch off we are very disorganised, sloppy in our passing, making stupid decisions regarding shot selection and tend to lose our shape e.g. Tyrone, Cork, periods v Dublin and Derry.
    Anything less than a solid 60+ minute performance (a clean sheet would be nice too!) and all the players and management will have to worry about over the next 3 weeks is their passports and ESTA clearance for New York.

  3. What a fickle bunch we are. Two weeks ago there were calls for Horan’s head and the end was nigh.

    Now 66% of us think we will win the league which according to opinion puts us at 1/3 to lift the title. Paddy Power’s odds at 8/15 to beat Derry look generous by comparison.

    I think we should beat Derry but we need to be very careful not to underestimate them. They will come in as underdogs and will throw everything at us so anything less than a fully focused performance will see us come up short.

    From where Mayo are now, I think they have to go on and win the league and give us that extra bit of confidence for the summer campaign.

  4. This is where Mayo expected to be and from now on I think we’re see a much more focused Mayo team. They want to win the league and they want to win it in Croke Park.
    So they won’t take Derry for granted but they should have too much for them.

    There is another major collision with Dublin coming down the tracks in the league final…….

  5. I would choose the following starting 15…
    Cunniffe – if Barrett was fit I’d have Harrison here.
    Harrison – if Barrett was fit I’d have him here.
    Vaughan – if Barrett was fit I’d have Cunniffe here.
    A. O’Shea
    A. Moran

    I’d look, if at all possible, to get the following in from the bench…
    McHale, Drake, S. O’Shea, Parsons, A. Gallagher & Sweeney.

  6. It’s probably the 15 or close to it that Horan will pick. I might have R Feeney at 11 with Moran in place of Doherty.

    McLoughlin, Higgins, Freeman & OConnor are certain starters in the forwards come summer

  7. Four certain forwards Mcloughlin, Moran, Freeman , O Connor but its the other two that will decide the games this year. we have so many at the same level, any one of them can play well on the day but picking the ones that will do that is very very difficult.

  8. A lot of this will be decided by the relative fitness of the two sides cos nobody knows what kind of training teams are putting in at the minute but hopefully we are on a par with this usefull Derry side.

    A team I’d like to see


    Cuniffe Caff Harrison

    Keegan Vaughan Boyle

    Gibbons O’Shea

    McLoughlin Parsons Higgins

    O’Connor B Moran Freeman

    Best of Luck Lads

  9. Just heard on RTE news that Cillian O’Connor considers himself 50/50 to be fit for Sunday. His injury has not improved since the weekend and he is going for a scan. Hope this is not an indication that his injury problems are going to continue. Too many good players in the past have been plagued by injury problems, often minor but repeated, and unable to reach their full potential.

  10. Yeah just heard that as well. He wont really know how serious it is til after scan tomorrow. Fingers crossed. We need a fully fit Cillian not one whose carrying an injury. If there are any doubts about him, he should not be risked, but Im sure the medical team wont take any chances.

  11. I don’t think we should be fearing any team just because they are from Ulster. Our recent record against the northern teams is good where we have been beaten only once in knockout since 2008. The Ulster mindset is another thing entirely but we can and we have beaten the northern lads on the big stage before. I don’t believe Derry will pose any special problems for Mayo, as usual it will be our own individual performances that determine the outcome on the day, we are a better team overall but will we need to be cute about the match ups and the positioning. Derry’s full forward line has been much vaunted so the possibility of Higgins going back will of course rear its head again and who to play in the corners, it will be a lot to ask of Harrison or McHale and will be a big jump up for them but they will probably be in there ahead of Keane with Drake likely to see some game time as well. It’s hard to know about mid field but at least we have options so that if things aren’t going our way we have ready replacements, would be surprised if AOS and JG aren’t able to dominate though. Forwards I think will see little change but we really need Doc and Freezers to have big games, that will be the winning of it if they can, it’s looking like COC won’t be 100%.

    Keegan and McLoughlin will be back to steady the ship of course, sorely missed the last day when we lost our shape in the second half.

    I really feel that a league victory this year is vital, it will be the launchpad that blasts us into Croker in September. Winning hard trophies is a habit we need to pick up fast. All the Connacht Championships in the world are little comfort!

  12. Is he ever going to get a break injuries first shoulder and now this I hope he does not start Sunday.

  13. If CoC isn’t right I’d leave him to recover, there are others that will step up in his absence. The shoulder injury is in the past, this is supposedly a muscular thing so a few days can make it better.

    My guess is this

    Mayo 2 15
    Derry 2 13
    And CoC will play, unless it’s very bad.

  14. Yeah Ultair, I’d agree with you there, we never seem to have an inferiority complex when playing against Northern teams compared to when we play Kerry for example. Our record against Tyrone in recent years is very good compared to our record against The Kingdom. Tyrone also have being the leading team in Ulster in recent times. We beat them in last year’s semi-final and also in the 1989 semi-final. Even in 2008 when they only just beat us in an All-Ireland qualifier they went on to win the All-Ireland that year. Also if you look back to 2004 we put in a great performance to beat them in All-Ireland quarter-final, they were defending champions that year and also won the All-Ireland again in 2005. Yet when they played Kerry they always got the better of them while we never managed to compete with Kerry during those years. Again was this due to mental fragility on our part? We also beat Fermanagh in the 2004 semi-final. Last year it was two Ulster teams we beat to make the final, Donegal in the quater-final and as mentioned above Tyrone in the semi-final. We also beat Down in the quarter-final game in 2012. So compared to the other provinces we have quite a good record against Ulster teams. Maybe they underestimate us sometimes. After coming through a tough Ulster campaign when they are drawn against us, they probably feel its a much easier game than playing the likes of Kerry, Cork or Dublin. This then plays into our hands. In saying that it will be a very tough game against Derry on Sunday and we will have to be at our best to beat them.

  15. Think McIver has already pulled a fast one.

    Field a B team and don’t get beaten out the gate is a good start and makes it a bit difficult for Mayo to get to grips with the real team. Remember Cork did that to us a few years ago.

    In addition, Derry have been very impressive all through the league, beating Dublin fair and square.

    I think Mayo should approach it like the semi against Dublin last year. Try a few things and learn and it’s an extra match in Croker under the belt.

    Then heads down for Gaelic Park.

  16. win for mayo and a win for Cork . Im bringing herself. She wouldn’t be a massive fan either but i booked the return bus for 7,15 Sunday evening so she will have to wait in croker till after the Dubs game 🙂

  17. Agree – we will need a full 70min performance if we want to win this one…something we haven’t been able to do to date. I for one expect a very uncomfortable afternoon on Sunday and just hope the team go at this game with the right attitude, effort and focus…

  18. In the long term I’d like to see Cillian O’Connor playing at CHF. I always think that you need a creative player in that position. Look at the Havoc The Gooch caused there last year for Kerry against opposition teams. Also when Tyrone were winning All-Ireland titles they had Brian McGuigan pulling the strings at no. 11, getting the ball to O’Neil, Mulligan and Canavan who then did the damage on the scoreboard. Down also had Greg Blaney in this position in the early 90s and Larry Tomkins did the business for Cork in the late 80s and early 90s as well. In general successful teams have creators in that position rather than a converted midfielder. Cillian played very well against Galway at CHF in last year’s game in Salthill, he was MOTM in that game. He was involved in most of Mayo’s scores that day. He would also bring great leadership qualities to that position. He also set-up Alan Freeman’s goal against Cork with a lovely played bouncing pass right into his hands. This would then free up Doc to play alongside Freeman and maybe Mickey Sweeney in the full-forward line. There would be great goal scoring potential in that full-forward line. Hopefully Cillian will be fit for Sunday, he has being very unlucky with injuries the last while.

  19. A good match v Derry will do me, not the end of the World if we loose. From here we know where we’re going, get New York out of the way, then total focus on winning Conaught, Quarter final victory against some journey team who’s confidence is already dinted and after that a semi-final place beckons. By then the League will be long forgotten and with two games left, winning Sam will be all that matters.

  20. I agree for the most part Pebblesmeller…but I’d include Sweeney to start in the corne and drop Keith back.

  21. Agree we can expect a very difficult game and will tell us a lot as to whether we have to self belief to close out the game. COC would be a big loss but we have to be able to get results without a key player, like the Dubs.

  22. I’m not saying that we fear them or indeed that our record against northern teams is poor, I’m saying that anyone who thinks that this will be a stroll in the park is mistaken and that, in my opinion, those odds are crazy because the game will be a lot closer than the bookies are saying. The reasons being as I outlined above.
    I certainly expect us to win and believe we will, because if we have any notions of winning an All Ireland we should be putting away a team that last year was promoted out of div 2.

  23. I dont see what Richie Feeney has done to deserve that position over Doherty. He has been anonymous in the games he has played this year, while Doherty has shown flashes of real quality and got on a lot of breaking ball. The guy has a quiet game and people instantly banish him to the bench, and replace him with someone who has done even less. I dont get it. Why does Feeney get a free pass?

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