Poll: who’ll prevail at Markievicz Park on Saturday evening?

Sligo Roscommon Connacht SFC 2015

Photo: @ConnachtGAA

With our place in this year’s Connacht final secured, it’s time to turn attention to who might be facing us in next month’s provincial decider. That question is (barring a draw) set to be sorted this coming weekend, with Sligo entertaining Roscommon on Saturday evening at Markievicz Park in the year’s second Connacht semi-final (throw-in 7pm).

It seems a bit odd that this match has been scheduled for a Saturday evening, as this time slot is usually given over to qualifier matches. It’s being broadcast live on Sky, though, which probably explains it. I still think it’s strange – surely both counties, and their respective supporters, would prefer a Sunday afternoon match time for a Connacht semi-final tie?

Onto the game itself, which sees Roscommon bidding to qualify for the provincial decider for the first time since 2011 while Sligo last made it that far in Connacht in 2012. The last time the two counties met in the Connacht championship was back in 2010 when they contested that year’s final at MacHale Park.

The Rossies, relegated from Division Three of the League that spring, were slight underdogs against a Sligo team managed by Kevin Walsh, who’d not only escaped Division Three via the upwardly mobile route a few months previously but had also beaten both ourselves and Galway on the way to the Connacht final. It was the Sheepstealers who bagged the Nestor Cup that day, however, with the weight of expectation and ten points from the boot of Donie Shine putting paid to the Yeats County’s hopes of a fourth provincial title.

Speaking of Donie Shine, the big Clann na nGael clubman is one of two players John Evans has omitted from his starting line-up for Sunday compared to the team that started against London in Ruislip last month. He’s replaced by Conor Daly while Ronan Stack replaces the injured Donal Ward. Sligo have also announced their pick for Sunday, with their chosen fifteen containing four championship debutants. Details of team news for both sides are here.

If you fancy going along to the game check out the opposition for July 19th, details on ticketing arrangements for Saturday evening are here. I’ve no idea, I’m afraid, what demand for tickets is like for this match.

With the Rossies now in Division One of the NFL while Sligo continue to languish in Division Three, it’s hardly surprising that the bookies are firmly of the opinion that League form will carry over into the championship – John Evans’ team are red-hot 4/11 favourites to win on Saturday evening. What do you reckon, though? Who’ll win through to face our lads in this year’s Connacht final?

Who'll win on Saturday evening?

  • Roscommon (71%, 174 Votes)
  • Sligo (29%, 72 Votes)

Total Voters: 246

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75 thoughts on “Poll: who’ll prevail at Markievicz Park on Saturday evening?

  1. Have to tip the sheepstealers to come through but won’t have it all their own way in Sligo.

  2. I’d laugh my hole off if Sligo won this

    That said I’d love a Ros 30 point win, send the hype machine into overdrive! Give them a lovely batin then in Castlebar 🙂

  3. Ciaran whats that you said about hype machine and then talk of giving us a lovely beating in Castlebar. It seems your the one hyping us up.

    As a Roscommon man working in Sligo I think it will be a tough game. Sligo have 4 players making championship debuts. It could go either way for those players. They might have no fear and play great or get a bit nervous etc. From what I hear there is a big interest in both counties so I would think there should be a decent crowd. I think we are beginning to see what the Sky Sports deal means when a Connacht semi final is played on a Saturday evening and not a Sunday as usual.

  4. I agree about the time of throw in not being ideal. Personally, I go to all the Donegal matches ( haven’t been to any Mayo games since I moved home) but I quite simply won’t be able to go to the semi in Clones. It’s a seven o’clock game too to suit Sky and with small children at home, not being here for bedtime just isn’t an option for me at the minute. Totally disappointed. I’d go for Roscommon in the poll, comfortably I’d say.

  5. Roscommon will win handy.They have a good mix and will give our lads a serious game.Anyone underestimating them is just pure silly imo.
    Dalys are class Murtaghs are class Kilbrides are class and Shine will play a part too.On song he is a good footballer.
    Mayo will do well to beat them .Sligo wont.

  6. Good stuff Lorrie. You’ll have lots of games to attend where you’ll be buying tayto and club orange and answering a million questions about football and how long is left.
    I think Roscommon will win this one easily, in fact I hope they batter Sligo and get even swelled-er heads. If there’s one crowd I cannot stand its Roscommon, no known reason, I just cannot suffer them at football. No matter what happens this year , giving those yahoos a hiding would be very nice in my book.

    Ross. 3-16
    Sligo. 1-11

  7. Was in Sligo for work today and anyone I spoke to would just love to beat the Rossies. Won’t happen I’m afraid. Roscommon to pull away at the end.

  8. It was your first comment on the site, Shane, that’s why it didn’t get posted to the site right away. The first comment from every poster goes automatically into moderation.

  9. Hello, i have gone for ros and know how hard it is to win in Sligo. The only thing i dont like about this site is the attitude to Ros. I am ashamed of the comments and name calling. Hope Andy Moran gets well soonand i am sure he would not approve either. Save your name calling for Meath in the Quarter Final please

  10. Cheers for that mayo mick. Haven’t looked at rte coverage for weekend. Any games on sat? Can’t see ros losing but like most mayo men I’d love to see it. You can be sure of they do win it will be another dogfight in cbar like in salthill sunday

  11. Dont hold back there Dave with your dislike of Roscommon supporters. Very sad to see. Rivalry is great for the game but perhaps that kind of attitude we could do without. As a Rossie who would always shout for whatever Connacht team gets to the business end of things I find it very negative. Cmon share the love

  12. Let’s not go down the road of soccer and start name calling and disrepeting teams sure we want to beat Roscommon but let’s be civil about it there are lots of decent Roscommon football people who just want to bring their kids to the match and see THEIR heroes win it will be a tough final but this is a great bunch of Mayo lads whoever win Connacht will have earned it Up Mayo

  13. As a mayo person living in the Ros I have heard my fair share of abuse towards mayo but also some surprising support from people I hadn’t expected it from. I am trying to raise my kids to be respectful to both and above all be proud of their western heritage. I think the Rossies will make it to the connaught final and I will be watching on Saturday with interest

  14. As a Mayo man living in Sligo I can tell you that we would be the least liked of all the Connacht counties down there. I agree totally that we are too negative towards our neighbours be it Ros Galway or Sligo. Also did anyone else know that we are known as the rhubarbs? This was new to me but I have heard it a few times from people. I know where it comes from with the colours. Just wondering if others knew this and maybe im just a bit behind

  15. Shane,

    My words seem a bit harsh in review, I take back any offense to you or other Ross fans. Best of luck on Sunday and I hope Mayo give you a trimming on Connaught final day if you get there.

  16. Whats wrong with a bit of sledging on this site? Its happening on the field so should be fair game here aswell, people need to lighten up a bit lol. My sworn enemies geographically are always Galway, i have some great friends there too, but the hatred between us is always there when it comes to football, and thats where it stops. A bit of name calling and wishing your neighbours get hammered by who ever is fair game during championship, but that doesnt mean its personal.

  17. Thanks Dave. We can sit beside each other at the Connacht final if we get past Sligo.

    Juan the sledging on the pitch is mainly Ulster teams and they can keep it. Rivalry about football is good but my post was about the comment towards the Roscommon people and not football. Anyway all if forgiven now.

    Does anyone else think that the Saturday evening kick off is a sign of whats to come to accomodate Sky Sports. Saturday evening matches are good for the qualifiers but a Connacht semi final should be a Sunday game. Wait until we are all sitting in Castlebar or the Hyde Park on a Saturday watching a Connacht final

  18. Wasn’t the Connacht semi final Sligo v Galway on Saturday night 7pm last year also?

    A real banana skin for the rossies not sure if Sligo will be good enough on the night to cause upset but they have apparently beaten Tipp,Westmeath and Kildare in recent challenges posting up big scores and the rossies were less than convincing against London on their last outing.

    With a forwards such as Marren,Kelly,Breheny v Kilbride,Murtaghs,Smith it should make for high scoring enjoyable game.

  19. Where has the banter gone? Sad day if you can’t slag off your neighbours. The world has gone pc mad:-/

  20. Da Yelabellies to win handy and we can all
    Look forward to a ‘Rhubarb n Custard’ final dessert!

  21. If Roscommon get into con final ,,,,, every other county in con will be shouting for Mayo not because they like mayo just a common dislike of Roscommon supporters ,,,, worst and most bitter bunch I have come across and unfortunately the younger supporters are listening and think it’s normal ,, very sad ,, sorry shane

  22. SKY sports reporter to fan exiting Portugal v England match a few years ago. “You disappointed that England lost?”. Fan- “Eh
    no…I’m Irish”. Reporter taken aback “Would you ever consider supporting England?”. Fan-“No”. Reporter getting desperate. “Never? …under any circumstances?”. Fan- Thinks deeply and finally says “I would…if they were playing Roscommon”. Reporter “Back to the studio”

  23. As a man born on the right side of the Mayo Rosc border I have no great love of the Rossies on a football field. But there are worse than the Rossies, Meath and Kerry for example. I do think, however, that some of the comments here are a bit over the top, People hoping to hype Rosc are in fact hyping Mayo. Pay heed to the GAA’s probably most ignored mantra “Give respect, Get respect”.

  24. Most of the people i work with are from Rosscommon and are all sound so i wish Shane and all the ross fans the best on Saturday. They have good forwards so i think they will win by 3 to 4 points

  25. Castlebar Cait as we played away the last time, i dont think there pitch can hold a final either until its upgraded

  26. I have to say, there’s nothing I’d like more than to see our lads give the Rossies a good hiding, so I will be shouting for them on Saturday so that we get the chance to do so (whether we will or not, or whether they’d beat us – not an unimaginable scenario by any stretch – is a whole other matter). It’s called sporting rivalry and I make no apology for the depth of my feelings on the matter. And a Connacht final with the Rossies always has plenty of bite and banter (I bloody hate that word).

    Clearly this does not mean Mayo people hate Roscommon people. Sure I even have friends from Roscommon! 😉 And I suspect that should Roscommon make it further than ourselves that I might find myself quietly willing them on (not that I’d ever admit it mind). But of course that won’t happen …. 😉

    Welcome aboard Rossie Shane – you landed in here with a bang, looking forward to your contributions over the next few weeks!

    Rossies to win by eight on Saturday (sorry Sligo).

  27. I have always had a soft spot for Roscommon and most of their supporters are a decent bunch. They would be winning a lot more competitions but for us. They do not hold any fear for Galway and to a lesser extent for Sligo. I always feel for the younger supporters in McHale Park on the big days. Its only when we look back to that day in 2010 v Sligo that they managed to let their hair down in Castlebar. I hate the impact that Sky is having and this is set to contine and become more invasive with the passing of time. Roscommon have named a strong team and they should win with a bit to spare. I would have no problem seeing them fail at the next fence though.

  28. Would expect the Rossies to win on Saturday, particularly with Sligo missing Harrison and Martyn. Without those two, their back line will be seriously exposed to a strong Roscommon attack. Still expecting a tight game though.

    On the whole rivalry thing, personally the Rossies are the team I take most enjoyment from beating (in Connacht anyway).
    I know all counties have their fair share of clowns, I just think Roscommon are approaching circus level with their supporters.

  29. At the Hastings Cup semi this year down in some small club in Longford, I realised how much Roscommon fans hate Mayo. Their support that day was particularly vile, towards their own players. A serious chip on their shoulder

    The best quote from that day, from a Rossie supporter, to one of his own players while chasing the ball towards the sideline:

    “Keep it in ya c**t!!”


  30. Actually myself and my family were in for some verbal abuse from some mouthy Rossies after the game last year after we stopped for a bite to eat. We thought they were having the craic and we gave back the all-too-polite “ara sure we’ll wait and see”. They turned pretty nasty then with a couple of threats and, to say the least, some colourful language. Very strange. There happened to be another Mayo lad there who started getting mouthy with them then after he saw their carry-on and they backed down. Not an altogether nice experience but they were just a group of clowns.

  31. Oh I don’t know , some of ye take rivalry far too lightly . I’m not so sure ye would be of the same thinking if Ross happen to beat us in castlebar because believe me when I say I know the rivalry inside out. I’d have friends from the dark side and they’re as sound a bucks you’ll come across till it comes to Mayo football. They can deny it all they want for the Internet forums and social medi soft stuff but the border Rosies hate us , fact. And I’m not found of them when it comes to football either. It’s all gearing towards a very hot bed of good intensity for a Mayo v Ross final , don’t think these things like parking the Roscommon bus in ballagh last week are done without thought , it’s all to stir it up. Tg4 are actually doing a bit of a documentary on it too, were already in town after the Galway game ,I hope for their sake Sligo don’t upset it on them.

  32. I dunno. At least they have a passion and love of GAA and Gaelic football
    Galway on the other hand would take or leave it and follow their hurlers all day long.
    Football success is wasted on Galway people.

  33. Facetheball, they’re passionate bunch but their support dwindled down the years like every other sports team that goes through a bad patch . Think back to 09 in castlebar , I reckon there was 3 k at most yet they brought the whole county sheep included to Ennis in 06 for the minor replay.

  34. Thats to those who welcomed me on here and have a soft spot for my native county. To those who slang off our supporters amuse me. They talk about clowns and then post what they do. Im thinking kettle and pot. As for the bus in Ballagh, Roscommon fans in every part of the county like to see it turn up. I think I might enjoy this blog and thanks for having me.

  35. Shane , for me it’s not personal , it’s just a football rivalry . I can never understand the mentality of those who want others to speak untruths just to appease a PC approval and that’s what you’re after as far as I can see. Like most in here that go to the games , you’ll find a lot will say there is a fair bit of needle with Ross in comparison to all other counties but in saying that maybe the lads near the Galway border would feel different . My own father has more of a dislike for Galway for example that he more a less puts down to growing up during gal ways three in a row , me ! I celebrated when Galway won in 98 and 01. Different folks, different strokes as they say.

  36. Have no problem with the Rossies myself. Think they’re sound and good craic and they’ve certainly produced their share of ‘characters’ over the years. Of course there’s an ‘arsehole’ element in their support, just like there is in Mayo’s support. You’ll always have that element.

    But I look forward to beating them on July 19th all the same ;o)

  37. Shane, to be absolutely clear, I called a small particular group clowns, I never labelled Roscommon supporters as such. These guys were morons and I’m sure didn’t or don’t lose any sleep over GAA in Roscommon.

  38. There is a lot of hype around the Rosie’s this year hope it does not come back to haunt them.

  39. In fairness to Roscommon under John Evans, they have done everything that could be asked of them so far. They have won two league titles including Division 2 and 3 finals in Croke Park, so credit where credit is due, they are going in the right direction and would have beaten us last year only for Andy Moran changing that game. We of any county know how hard it is to win finals in Croke Park. But the big question now is, can they move onto the next level. Evans done something similar with Tipperary, bringing them from Division 4 up to Division 2 but they went back down again almost as quickly. He never managed to make the breakthrough with them in the Munster Championship, therefore it’ll be very interesting to see if he can make the breakthrough in Connacht with Roscommon. I was reading that 9 of their players for Sunday are 24 or under. Even so far this year a lot of these players have played a lot of football: Sigerson, U21 football and the league. Sligo were top scorers in Division 3 this year and are meant to have done well in recent challenge matches but you would expect Roscommon to come through this game. I see that Roscommon have named a player at no. 10, C Daly, that usually plays as a defender so it’ll be interesting to see how they set-up.

  40. I’d love to see Sligo win this one and put those pumped up neanderthals back in their cave!! Not beyond the bounds of possibility either IMO.

  41. Fair play to Shane coming on here sticking up for his own County,have to say Ross have passionate support when they are doing well. They done some celerbrating when that beat us in Castlebar in January & it was only the FBD league!….The thing about the co of Rosscommon is its landlocked & has no lovely beaches like we have in Mayo I was
    always told that it was a very mean co as the saying goes “when the crows fly over Rosscommon they bring a packed lunch with them”…..heres to friendly rivalry & when either of us get to Croker we will be cheering them on.

    Mayo for Sam… Rosses for ham

  42. Think Ros supporters are very passionate about GAA and their team and that’s no bad thing. Look at their crowds for minor 2006 and U21 recently. I like passionate supporters and they bring colour and noise to venues. I am not surprised they desperately want to beat Mayo. No wins against us since 2001 and back to the 80s for victory in Castlebar. Galway as someone already said are lukewarm. Big crowds when winning but indifferent at other times. Personally I like beating both of them but would especially like to beat Ros in a good final in Castlebar this year.

  43. I remember, in my youth, in Ballaghaderreen, when Roscommon were playing Mayo, Roscommon flags out one window of a house and a Mayo flag out another window. Brothers “killing” each other with husband and wife “sleeping in different beds”..

  44. Joe Mc-as long as there wasn’t anyone else in th’other bed shur twas ok!

  45. My own sense of the expected Connaught final is that is an oppottunity to give our ‘B’ players a chance. There will still be a Quarter Final if it backfires. The injury scenario is not encouraging and so there may be no choice. Neither do i think Jim mc Guinness is telling the MANAGEMENT something they dont know. Have just seen a detailed an analysis of the Galway game with possession and shot stats from a mayo twitter source.

    I think the comments about Ros being a landlocked County with a small population does elevate football to a a other realm. I think it good to respect that and not try to rub defeats in their nose. You would expect Mayo people to learn. I have experienced consolation and congratulations from Cork and Tyrone sipporters. I am happy to celebrate quietly and stay away from Mayo Boasters. One should live with dignity when possible and still savour a win. Ciaran 2

  46. In fairness to the rossies they have great support that love their football yes they have a few clowns but what county doesn’t. Down the years I always preferred the atmosphere at ros v Mayo games the most in Connacht. Have always felt Galway show more passion to hurling than football.

    Sligo at home are no mugs as Mayo found out themselves in 2010. I would expect a closely contested game with the rossies to prevail narrowly.

  47. This blog really is giving me a good laugh. I didnt realise we got some of the Mayo support so hot under the collar.

    Im not sure what been landlocked has to do with GAA. You know the way landlocked Kilkenny and Tipperary never win anything so that much be it. Still sure im from a cave so what would I know.

    Now im off to try and make sure them crows flying over the county drop those packed lunches they have and maybe I can feed my fellow neanderthals. Keep up the good work. The internet connection isnt great in the cave but I manage to get wifi from the Mayo people passing tru. Thanks

  48. Reasons to dislike Roscommon –
    1. Stuck in traffic jams in Roscommon after matches
    2. Daylight robbery Connacht Final 2001
    3. The scene of worst day in Mayo football vs Leitrim in 1994
    4. Shane Curran
    5. Mouthy fans

    and finally, the best ever reason-

    6. Frankie Dolan

    C’mon Sligo!

  49. This thread is bordering on silly.
    Roscommon and Mayo people are probably closer in terms of aims wishes origins etc than any other two counties.Both counties are proud followers of football and both in my view are genuine supporters of each other except when they meet.Indeed many young lads have parents from Ros and Mayo and I have often heard of siblings following different counties.This is true of Mayo and Galway too.Senan and Ians Kilbride dad played for Mayo for many years…Dermot Earley was born in Mayo and so on.
    In football terms Ros are miles ahead of Sligo in my view.They have serious footballers …young fast and well organised.
    They have had club success and a healthy club championship and many of their players play with universities and have gained experience that way.They have a good bench …Shine..Ronan Daly and others.
    The Murtagh brothers will punish you and they have a dour but effective defensive system.They are a threat to Mayo and Sligo will not live with them.
    Fair play to them ..they endured bad days but they kept at it.I expect when Mayo lose it will be to Ros not Galway in Connacht and it could be sooner than we think.I hope not this year or next.

  50. I’m with you, hueyandlouis – to my mind, ourselves and the Rossies are cut largely from the same cloth (my own mother is a Rossie, for God’s sake!) and it’s certainly not my experience that our rivalry is in any way bitter, a notion that, from what I can see, has only gained legs in the last decade or so. Looking at it from their perspective, enduring all those defeats to us since 2001 can’t be easy to take and I wouldn’t blame them for not being overly enamoured to see us turning them over year after year. Their day will come, though, and when it does I know I won’t be shouting for whoever is playing against them in a big match in Croke Park.

  51. I see Ros winning by at least 4 and maybe as much as 10. Showed enough in the League that some young talent is coming through. Best production line in Connaught right now. Sligo consistently playing in the low divisions. Home advantage may help a bit but as we saw in Salthill with a well supported confident team it doesn’t ammount to much. Be interested to see how well their blanket functions and if like Galway they are foul prone or better disciplined.

  52. just called in to say hi wj. my own mother went in to hospital last monday week. so the m in ham is out for the moment at least.last sunday i had to baby sit the niece sinead as it was my sisters turn to see her mother. i didnt see the match as the television soar view box was not working, so i mowed the lawn. by all accounts mayo were lucky, but they improve as the year goes on.any way gotta go to the hospital now, ive got a rossie mum to look after.oh well done the last day hon mayo.

  53. Ros – Mayo games have always been my favourite. It takes pride n loyalty to keep turning out in big numers every year. Even at their lowest point Roscomon supporters (maybe 700 of them) went all the way to Wicklow for a Div 4 league game on a nice sunny spring Sunday.
    When there was a series of Mayo Ros matches from mid 80s to early 90s Roscomon regularly were more than 50% of the Hyde. Incredibe support with many older Roscomon supporters who left Roscommon travelling from
    Who could ever forget shirtless Rossie in the rain in Tuam in 98. Shirtless Rossie was like a long haired died in the wool archetype of the mythical Rossie. He plays pool (Rossies are obsessed with pool), he smokes, he drinks, he does bit o farmin on the homeplace, he’s a carpenter, he does’t over stretch in the lady chasing department he’ll just take what’s goin, he has no time for logic, no time for reason, he lives only for one mantra that will survive as long as there is Primrose n blue, “We are Ros, we are Ros, we are we are we are Ros”.
    Please arise again mad ancient man, this championship needs you.
    (as an aside I think he was a carpenter shirtless famous for a week Rossie. The media questions at the time were funny. “You were shirtless in the rain, would you do it again? – Yes. F*ck you common sense what a Rossie.

  54. Nope and I’m really glad I can answer that with complete honesty , the shirtless Rossie would not of been to that many games in recent times like a lot of rossies, ( was a very good mate of mine growing up, a roofer at the time with a degree but ) why do ye keep telling untruths , there was no more than 2-3k of them at the 09 game in castlebar , in 13 in castlebar there was a lot less that there will be in 15 . Why in the name of do people make things up , they will have and alway have had like every other county a bandwagon who will come and go according to success .

  55. Roscommon don’t bother me that much. Good footballing county. Mayo is a huge county so it depends where you are from….south Mayo people will have Galway as main rivals, East Mayo Ros and Ballina over to Charlestown will tell you Sligo are the team they love to beat most. One incident that did leave a sour taste was a beer bottle thrown in me and my friends direction as we retreated up the Main Street in Roscommon town after the 2001 final from the front door of a pub. But I won’t hold that against them all.

  56. I’m amazed at the depth of feeling there’s appearing in the blog . Have ye naughtin to do at all in such fine weather….what about a good round of the garden with the lawn more for a cooling off. I have to say that I’ve never come across any s–t Rossies anywhere but I do recall a nice incident in the year whatever when Jimmy Burke kneeeeeed the ball into the net to win us the game. Before the game we got chatting to two Ros fans back in from Wexford and Louth …great chat nice chaps with much passion in evidence. Game started and I think ’twas T Grethan caught a great ball up here on the right wing under the stand. . One of our Ros friends yumped up in the air shouting ‘ good man Tommy Grehan’ and he stayed standing and blocking views while Tommy took a quick shot which ballooned well up to the right on its way for the corner of the grave yar

  57. Not done yet! Buttery fingers! To resume …the grave yard.and then our man was heard to roar with mighty venom’Well ya f—-n b—–d ya.
    And so I learned a lesson that day and it’s this ….you need to be in the ‘ big time’ for a while to learn how to be good fans like what they have in Mayo. Good luck to Ros this evening and come on the All Blacks!

  58. I’m hearing Senan kilbride will not play for the rossies today out with a hamstring injury. That could swing it for Sligo. Are you guys ready for another trip to Salthill?

  59. All not going according to plan in Sligo. I think Sligo will hang on and win. It sounds as though Roscommon just turned up expecting to win, never a good thing to do.

  60. Ahhh stop lads i cant stop laughing…i just have that clip of Evans after league final talking about winning all irelands in my head lol. I saw this coming and posted twice on this blog that sligo would beat them. Well done sligo!!!!…the rossies are “coming” they said!! This is priceless!

  61. Just catching up on this thread. Gas. Don’t think anyone is taking it too seriously in fairness. I’m only sorry we won’t get to continue it in the run-up to the final!

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