Poll: will we do it in 2014?

Emotions are still, I know, running a bit high about how we blew this year’s final but there’ll be another All-Ireland up for grabs again next year. The good news is that we should start as one of the favourites for Sam but the bad news is that we have to start right back at square one again at the start of next summer. Well, nearly square one as our opening match will be over in New York in early May.

So, having come so close to landing Sam last year and again this year will 2014 be the year when we finally do it? Time to vote.

Will we win Sam in 2014?

  • No (50%, 174 Votes)
  • Yes (50%, 172 Votes)

Total Voters: 346

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216 thoughts on “Poll: will we do it in 2014?

  1. Sorry WJ . I cannot say that we will ,

    I want to see a connacht 4 in a row and a grand handy quarter-final tie.

    If we are beaten in connacht then i have to say that this team have the stuff to pull out a qualifier run as well.

    To win Sam next year would be one of the great sports stories of all time. Let’s just get to the All-Ireland Series and see what shape we are in then.

  2. Oh how I’d love to say yes but well and truly I don’t see it

    Saying that we’ve a great chance to reach a final given how the draw is likely to pan out

    I have zero doubt we’ll win Connacht again and then we face a back door side in a quarter final. Whatever it is our best performances over the last three years have seemed to come at the QF stage and either way I don’t see how a non-provincial winner can trouble us too much- bar the Munster loser at a push. Think Donegal will have another unflattering year- oh boy they must regret league relegation right now

    Then it’s either Cork or Kerry in the semi. It gets a bit tricky here though. Kerry are an ageing side and I think Cork will turn them over in Munster. I’d rather Kerry I think- we’d have great joy running at that backline. Rumours are that Brosnan and O’Se are going to pack it in and you’d wonder will others join. They don’t have much coming through. Then again anyone with Gooch must be feared but I think we’d account for them no doubt in my mind

    I’d seriously worry about Cork though. With the tactically inept CC gone a new manager could well make far better use of the talent at their disposal. If they get their selection right and get a bit of belief I think they’re a serious bet for Sam. I’d far rather if CC was still there

    I wish we had the Ulster winner in semi as I can’t see Tyrone improving THAT much in 12 months and Donegal will seriously struggle IMO.

    I’ll be far better equipped to answer this after the league when I see how Cork are adapting to a new manager. I know it’s only a bit of craic now though!

    Saying that if we do make the final it’ll be the Dubs barring something extraodinary I think. I can only see them improving in the next 12 months. Those younger lads will be a year older, stronger and more experienced and serious competition for places should ensure hunger isn’t too much of an issue like it was in 2012

    But to sum up- No sadly

  3. No amount of Marquee forwards will win us an All Ireland what will win is it a TEAM that will fight tooth and nail on the pitch for each other their manager and their supporters I believe with a few tweaks this is the team we need James and Buckley to stay to give it one more shot … If doesn’t happen next year then fair enough give the task to someone else but James has brought us along way and he is the man for the job he will finish it !!!

  4. You are a one man hype machine.
    I liked seeing Jimmy Barry Murphy from Cork telling his players to get up of the ground on Saturday and congratulate the winners. He didn’t want them posing in the papers looking forlorn on Sunday.

    I think we will be in with a shot as long as Galway and the Rossies don’t manage to fastrack their rebuilds. That Galway team was like us four years ago.

  5. @Livenhope….I’d take my chances (and fancy them) with another marquee forward, thanks very much 😉

    Thats a loaded question WJ.

    Despite all the the doom, the gloom, the bad decisions, the mis-handling, the wides, the fracas in the camp, the ref, the dubs, the sheep steelers, the herin chokers, the funeral, curse, the odds!
    ….I think we can.

  6. I thought I was feeling low enough but to hear the craic that went on before the final has driven the boot in completely. I think that the damage done psychologically to this team will be very hard to overcome.
    However, I think that this bunch of lads is the finest we have produced. 1-9 we are equal if not better than any other team. CoC should be 100%. An injection of new blood from the U21/Minors will be needed in the forwards and then we can drive on from there.
    I’m going with a yes, enough of this depression.

  7. Mayo should win Connacht. Quarter final too depending on the draw, its tricky but not beyond this team.
    I can see Mayo reaching a final again if they keep this panel intact bar 3 or 4 and add in a few with speed up front. Winning a 2014 final has become harder now because of the last 2 losses, itll take something special but if the management can get the players to believe what’s being said, anything is liable.
    It would be some story, thats for sure but isn’t it some story already, hardly believable.
    By the way if there’s ever a movie made I have dibs on playing ciaran macdonald in it. I have perfected the outside of the boot kick thing.

  8. ha ha david, well get yourself and your boots down for next round of trials!!

    yes I think mayo can do it, bring in aidan kilcoyne, give cathal freeman a chance in the forward line…anythings possible……

  9. There is only so much self-flagellation anyone can take, or is there? Unless there is a radical change in the mindset of certain players, more tactical awareness from the management team and a win at all costs mentality approach then I am afraid the answer is no.

    Maybe we just need to take the crazy gang approach.

  10. We’ll be around for a while yet. With respect to all our neighbours in connacht, they are still light years off the level that is required replicate what we’ve being doing since JH took the reigns.
    We must try to emulate the Dubs in relation to dominating our provence. Year after year they collect silverware in Leinster and like us, they have fallen short on more than 1 occasion when the All Ireland series heats up.

    The core of our current squad is still very young, and you could consider that most of them will get an opportunity to play with our Minors when they mature a bit in a few years.
    Guys like Keegan, O Shea, O Connor, Coen, keane, Regan, Carolan, vaughan and Mchale are still very much in the introduction phase of their senior careers albeit 1 or 2 are seasoned at this stage.

    The term or word “Marquee” seems to be popping up everywhere since the AI final from our attacking point of view.
    History does tell us that champions always have at least one guy that will cough up something special on the big day when needed.
    Like Brogan the last day, playing poorly up to the final, he crops up with the defining scores to spoil what was supposed to be our day!
    I think most people would agree, putting managerial decisions and kick-outs to one side that it was up front where we lacked. Lacked, not in terms of effort our athleticism but in decisiveness, know-how and to certain extent maybe a bit of flair.

    One thing that is a certainty in Mayo football at Present, is that their is No ‘Marquee Player’ about the place, that is not already in the county senior panel, 100%. You are deluding yourself if you disagree! Believe me I’ve seen a shitload of club football in the past couple of years.
    We will have to create from within (not recruit) if this is what it needed to capture the holy grail!

  11. Am sick of speculation. The truth is, not one on this blog knows what is going to happen. Look at all the theories leading up to the final, all way off, a waste of time!!! I will wait and see.

    I hope Mayo have a very tough year with maybe a defeat or the qualifiers. That will test their mettle, which was lacking last week!!

    They had it too easy this year, nothing was learned.

  12. Joe

    How do you think it was easy? They made it look easy, hard work and sweat made it look easy. It’s hardly the Mayo teams fault if Galway, Roscommon, London, donegal and Tyrone aren’t up to giving them a run for their money, is it?
    Dublin won by a single point and if it had went on for any longer I think it would have been a draw or win for Mayo. The truth is Mayo should have been out of sight with a half hour gone, they weren’t , and Dublin came good for a spell and got 2 goals.

    About the only part I can agree with in your post is that nothing was learned in those other games. This Final will have taught all concerned some real lessons. If the actually take the lessons to heart anything is possible in 2014.

  13. Sorry David, what I meant was that the margins they won by and how easy it seemed may have papered over the cracks. It is commonly accepted that hard games can fine tune a team much better than an easy game and hopefully they can learn more. That’s all. In reality, Mayo were not severely tested. Look at the Dubs semi-final, how close can you get.

    I completely agree with you that Mayo should have been out of sight at half time. If they had, Dublin were gone. That’s what makes it more annoying. Anything is possible in 2014 but everything was possible in 2013. We just have to wait and see.

    I keep saying we have an 80% great team. That is a positive statement.

  14. If I had to put a bet on now, Mayo would not be in first three choices tbh.

    If there are some changes and a couple of lads cut from the panel , if there is slight change in Horans reluctance to adjust in gametime for example , you would never know but it’s a massive ask , emotionally drained no matter how we all try to find positivity.

    I would like to see the county remain positive for the future though, we could still develop another top team by the time the 06 U -21 s bow out.

    On reflection now and without sounding to defeatist too but this present bunch of lads have really put in a massive effort and even though it might seem over the last week some of mine and others comments are down on them a bit, I have nothing but the height of respect for them, they have made me so proud at times like I have never been before, Cork in 11, Dublin in 12 , all the Provincial games this year esp Salthill and the Donegal game too.No matter what happens now , them memories can’t be stolen. Grma.

  15. RANT:

    All we need to do is get some speed into the half forward line, and possibly mid field and build up the confidence again and build a game plan for the dubs., sort out management, get spotters, clone Higgins and COC, make Andy younger. Blah, blah, blah,

    Of course we will do it. We have a shoe into the 4trs, its an open run from there.

    We had two great summers. Remember Down, Dublin, Galway, Donegal & Tyrone, all great days with a great team and management.

    Another summer run is just what we need, I do not wish to glorify alcohol use and I really dont drink much but my wife has threatened to leave me if I go on the tear with Mayo football again, but I am willing to chance it again next summer!

    My biggest fear is that we might win when I am too old to give it the celebration it deserves.

    Not up to me or most of you to fall into despair over things we cant influence. Our role is to support.

  16. We should.

    We should have two all irelands under our belt at this stage and be hunting for the 3 in a row. That should be the reality instead of this will we wont we bull. What in the name of god and ali baba is happening?

    There are alot of serious heads on this site who have great understanding of tactics and match ups. After reading Digits pre game analysis I thought jeez this a guy has a serious understanding of the game of gaelic football. Others like pebblesmeller, joe mac and jim flag to name a few also possess a canny footballing brain.

    I don’t know to much about the pros and cons of potential match ups . I only can respond to what I see. Maybe one of ye lads can help me understand why things were done the way they were done on that all important day.

    1 Why was nothing done when dublins tactics were to starve SOS and AOS of ball by kicking to the corners. Why was nothing done to counteract this basic tactic? What got us to this point was the OShea’s winning ball in the middle and powering up the field creating seroius opportunities up front. Did the Mayo management not forsee the possibility that this might happen?

    2 Why were we kicking the high ball into an isolated 5ft 10 Andy Moran who was surrounded by six footers. Was Andy going to have a growth spurt, maybe that was the plan?

    3 The Freeman thing has been kicked to death already. Taking him off was just weird. People seem happy enough with no answers. Maybe Mayo have turned into Man United and Horan has turned into Ferguson. Maybe the supporters are not entitled to answers. A hush hush need to know basis I suppose is good enough. People seem happy enough to accept that so fuck it’ll have to do. I’d only question that decision because it seemed so weird taking him off. At least the management don’t talk Italian.

    4 I’ll leave it at this. Why with no time left did Cillian not try for the win and at least drive the fucking ball as hard as he could in the direction of the onion bag? I know that the odds were stacked against him but at least there was a chance. We’d go down fighting and not take our All Ireland out of our hands and put it into the hands of the referee. Nobody would fault Cillian for trying. I wouldn’t fault him now either. He’s a great lad. Direction was lacking. We had a chance, slim though it was, it was still a fucking chance.

    The hardest part to take is that I believe that this team and management were good enough. We did try really hard but not in the right ways.

    We definetly can win next year, if we finally learn.

    “Come On Mayo!!!”

  17. Agree with Sean Burke about efforts of this team’ As usual the problem for us on AIF day is the lack of an outstanding forward. Im following Mayo for over 4 decades and we ve never had a truly brilliant forward who can do the business. Even C Mac excellent and all as he was, was fairly subdued in 97, 04 and 06. People claimed Conor Mortimer never did it on the biggest day of all but name me one forward who did. Alan Dillon has been an excellent servant for us but he will look back on his 4 finals with some disappointment. We have never had someone like Canavan, Joyce, Gooch, Mickey Linden etc. Our half forward line this year contained 2 converted defenders and Lee Keegan was tried in forwards during the league. In this time we have produced great minors up front but none have made transition to senior though Cillian may be the exception. Its so hard to win it out without at least one outstanding forward. We compensated well this year by our wide range of scorers and our excellent backs but when push came to shove in the final we only managed 7 scores from play. Until we rectify that we will find it hard to win the ultimate prize.

  18. No-one has mentioned it here but I think it was an incredible feat that Cillian made the final.He must have put in a superhuman effort and went through some pain-kudos to him .He was not as sharp as he normally is in open play but it shows what playin for Mayo really means to him.Future captain for sure.

  19. Joe Ruane,
    “We should have two all irelands under our belt at this stage and be hunting for the 3 in a row. That should be the reality instead of this will we wont we bull. What in the name of god and ali baba is happening?”

    That is so true. Your post is spot on. I will pray for you at Knock!! (I’m a terrible liar, haven’t been there in years!!!)

  20. Right now I think no, but that’s based solely on past performances into which bin Sept 22nd 2013 has now fallen. We will never play this AIF again, never see this performance again, no team in the country will be the same again next year, so predicting the future is a bit of fun but only that.In the interim I hope that team Mayo, inclusive, can learn from what worked and failed in 2013 so there’s a lot to be getting on with.
    AS against this the one small advantage we have over other counties is we should have a good idea of the type of mentality needed on AIF day ( based on two days at AIF tempo) evidence suggests that we have a few who don’t fit the profile and how many counties get to make changes based on the facts.

  21. By the time we eventually get over the line we will have suffered so much that we will be unable to celebrate. There is only so much that the human body can take & we are taking the testing to the limit. Time will have run out for many good people.
    We may be slow learners but we are certainly gaining in experience … two AIF appearances in successive years.
    Nobody knows what will happen in the next couple of years … we are in as good a position as anyone else to become serial contenders.
    I have been critical of the management style but there is no doubt that we are in a better position now than when this management took over.
    We just need the final 10% now. This will involve thanking some players for their services, adding some new or returning ones, giving more game time to panel members & potential newcomers particularly in the League & FBD, peaking a bit later next year & better game management on the really big days.

  22. @ Joe Ruane…all spot on observations…what rankles me the most is the decison to sub Freezer…and that Cillian was apparently not told to blast it and for the other 14 on the team…to crash the fukin net. If he missed it, so effin what, we still lose by two.

  23. I cant really give an answer rite now.Just checking in on this blog is difficult at the moment.im still processing it.Feel worse about it than i did after the game.Painful stuff

  24. @ opt2misteek. I honestly thought he wouldn’t make it. There was a very interesting article before the match by an expert in that field and he said it was very possible to play with the type of shoulder injury that Cillian had. With other types of shoulder injuries, he couldn’t play. He said he could play again but it would be better to have the operation and cure it finally.

  25. Joe Ruane. As usual spot on. As i said before Mayo could do with having you in the dressing room at around 3pm on All Ireland final day to deliver the last rousing words. You talk more sense than most people and your presence in there would certainly do us no harm.

    We could indeed have been chasing 3 in a row in 2014. The 9 awful wides in the first half were killing for us. Gavin had used all his subs by 53 minutes and we let him get out of jail. Poor Cillian not going for the goal at the end was just unforgivable. Where was the leadership from the line for that call? Do ya think if it was the Dubs who were behind in that situation they would have popped it over the bar? As for Freeman going off??? I think the thousands who went to Croke park deserve an answer. Several hundred Mayo folk if not thousands came from overseas and paid big money for flights etc to be at the game and witnessed some awful decision making and weird tactics from the management. An explanation would not go amiss.

    Anyway lads i dont think we scored a pint from play after the 26th minute (excluding the goal) and that surely says it all. Not strong enough up front. Horan or anybody else from the sideline cannot kick the ball over the bar for the lads in the H/F or F/F line. Some lads have to be put out to grass now. Also from now on surely there should be more emphasis and training time put into the art of kicking a pint from 35 yards. Could 2013 be the last All Ireland that we “kick away” please.

    As for 2014. Lets see the draw for Connacht on Thursday night anyway to start with. No matter how it goes i think we will get the 4 in a row in Connacht. Ya, i suppose i can see us meeting Kerry in the semi final but that might be it. Ah feck it anyway.

  26. Lads, we can talk until we are blue in the face about what went wrong and what we might do next year, Mayo folk have been doing that for over 60 years now but until the mental issues are cured there is a extremely high chance that we are in for more of the same. Posters have mentioned that we don’t have a Canavan, a Brogan or a Joyce for example, but in all likelihood none of those top players would have won All-Ireland’s had they been born in Mayo.

    All the hype, the stupid songs and the continual references to curses and other old wives tales etc. need to be cut out. I would have died on that pitch for my county as many of you here would as well, I saw some giving it their all and others just too casual.

    It can be done, Donegal proved that, but as much as our lads put into it, and it was a massive effort, we need more and that bit more gives you the grain of rice to get over the line.

    We need a dogs of war mentality, this is not a brain surgery competition. There is enough quality in Mayo to win an All-Ireland but you must f**king work harder than you have ever done before to do it.

    The management team must also improve and not be so one dimensional and predictable. Spend 5 years where I did and 9 months training would feel like a walk in the park.

  27. @ Tom61, I keep bringing up when Leitrim, under John O’Mahoney, beat a highly fancied Mayo in the Connacht final. Leitrim were a poor team, (they had the shite beaten out of them in the All Ireland Semi final), so how did they beat Mayo????

    I was in Hyde Park, on the sideline, for that game and was chatting to a Mayo Garda. Both of us agreed, Mayo didn’t turn up, but that wasn’t the reason Leitrim won.
    They won because they attacked and harassed like dogs; as you said with the “dogs of war mentality”. Simple as that. Mayo were strolling up and down the field and just couldn’t get to grips with it it.

    What’s the lesson there? I have been saying all year that Mayo need to come out like dogs, no more. They didn’t. How simple a tactic is that?

    No team, no matter how good they are, can live with that. Look what we did to Donegal!!! It’s not rocket science.

  28. Will Mayo win AIF in 2014 ?

    Current panel and management has maxed out and their best was not and will not be good enough.

    Changes to panel and management team can improve prospects but will that be good enough to beat an improved Kerry, much improved Tyrone, good but over rated Dublin and a re-invigorated Cork ..

    There has been many references to 2010 defeats by Sligo and Longford as Mayo’s lowest ebb. I disagree, what about the 20 point hammering by Cork in 1993, Leitrim 1994, all of the 70’s. JH is no better manager than Maughan and O Mahoney (stint 1) aside from 3 in a row. The best Mayo manager will be the one that leads us to Sam again.

  29. Looking back over All-Ireland results since the new Championship format came in in 2001, it would appear that if you can beat Kerry, you have a much better than average chance of winning the All-Ireland.

    Let’s look back over the years:
    2013: Dublin beat Kerry in the SF
    2012: Donegal beat Kerry in the QF
    2011: Dublin beat Kerry in the final
    2010 (one of two exceptions to this): Down beat Kerry in the QF, but lost to Cork in the final
    2009: Kerry won
    2008: Tyrone beat Kerry in the Final
    2007: Kerry won
    2006: We don’t need reminding of what happened here
    2005: Tyrone beat Kerry in the final
    2004: See 2006 above
    2003: Tyrone beat Kerry in the SF
    2002: Armagh beat Kerry in the Final
    2001 (Second exception): Meath beat Kerry in the SF, but lost to Galway in the Final

    So of the 13 Championships since the new structure, Kerry have won four times; on seven occasions the team that knocked Kerry out went on to win (four of those wins were finals); and twice the victors over Kerry lost the final.

    The only drawback for us here is that our record against Kerry in the Championship is abysmal.

  30. I think we can win it in 2014 as the pain of this year can, if harnessed properly be turned into more steely determination, it seemed to keep the team going over last winter and led to the destruction of Donegal in the quarters. We do need to let a few go and blood some aswell but we need to keep the main fabric of the side.
    Cillian at full strength could be the best forward in the country next season……hampered as he was for most of this year with the shoulder, he was still class and as already mentioned above ,’shows great leadership’ and he has bite as well.
    MaighEo Abú

  31. I agree fully Joe Mc, no matter how good your opponent is, he is only good when he is allowed to play. If Mayo went out v Dublin with the same mentality as they did against Donegal then we would have beaten them by a dozen points, all we needed was one.

    I suppose that’s why I keep harping back to the importance of the mentality issues and getting that sorted asap.

    We have the bones of a very good team that needs a few new faces, a strong dose of venom and ruthlessness, and a bit of cuteness on the sideline.

  32. Can we win it in 2014?
    We can if……………..
    1. The team and management can recover from such a huge setback. It will be really hard to face into another winter of hard slogging.
    2. They are willing to ‘bank’ the huge amount of experience, fitness, strength, skill levels and general quality that they have built up over the last couple of years and use that to push on to the next level
    3. The team and management are honest enough and humble enough to learn from the mistakes that were made
    4 sort out the hassle that occurred before the final ( that I suspect will be very difficult)
    5. Get all our present forwards physically fit and playing to their potential and add one or two new ones ( which is easier said than done).
    That’s a lot of IFs……………….but I say a tentative Yes we can win it.

  33. Gerry in Laois. Nice statistics there. Isn’t there an old saying that goes something like

    “you dont win an All Ireland properly unless you beat Kerry along the way and preferably in the final”.

    There might be some truth in it.

  34. Joe Ruane, thanks for the compliment but you know a fair bit about it yourself.
    I do not buy into this marquee forward argument. I just don’t. Andy Moran scored a fabulous point from way out on the wing, on a narrow angle, against Donegal that was as good as any scored this year. Freeman bullied and harassed Eamon McGee and scored for fun off him as well as scoring the point of the day against Tyrone and Dillion got 2 screamers from distance in Croker. We have players that can score when given quality ball and in space. But look at the supply of ball into our full forward line against Dublin in the second half and compare it to the ball going in against Donegal. It was hit and hope stuff against Dublin, high ball going in to Moran with 2 men on his back, balls dropping short or bouncing out over the side-line and end-line. Put Gooch, Joyce, Canavan or any of the other names mentioned above into a full forward line receiving that type of supply and see how much they would score.
    A full forwards primary job is to score. For him (I will use the male for this example) to do this he firstly needs ball he can get onto and retain. Secondly, he must receive it in good positions, i.e. in the scoring zones and not stuck out in the corner and isolated against 2 defenders! Thirdly, he needs a bit of space around him to give that extra split second to get his shot off accurately. For an attack to be effective you must create space on the field for your full forwards. you do this best by accurate ball in and support in numbers. How often did this happen in the second half? It was more like bad ball in to a tightly marked forward getting pushed wide towards the corner.
    We actually created 2 more scoring chances in the game than Dublin but their chances were in better positions on the field. It was also the first time this year that a side created more chances than Dublin.
    We have the forwards, with maybe a tweak or two and better player positioning, but we must create more space for them and in better scoring areas on the field.

  35. Pebblesmeller, that’s all true, but what happens when a team gets in our faces or when you have a player like cluxton dictating the game, when you don’t have the space you mention?

    Its very hard to discuss the game from a tactical point of view when we had so many bad performances from both sets of players it must be said. For me Cluxton won the game for Dublin.

  36. Sometimes we need to be humble. Some times we need to reflect and make sure we don’t get dosed with our own arrogance. Just to put a little perspective into Leitrim and their achievements. They were solid, they should have won the 1995 Connacht final but slipped away at the death. They took out all the so called big guns in Connacht in 1994. They beat Mayo without killing themselves that year in the final.

    Two results from that era. True Dublin beat Leitrim by a scoreline of 3-15 to 1-9 in 1994. That was a 12 point differential. A year earlier I had the misfortune to attend one of “those days” for Mayo football.The records state Cork 5-15 Mayo 0-10, a twenty point hammering. Overall I wouldn’t be looking at the old log in my neighbours eye. I also sat through another day of infamy Kerry 2-19 Mayo 1-6 August 1981. That slashing was by 16 points. Keep the stones for the pond, not the glasshouse.

  37. John Cuffe, I am smiling here, I think I must be a bit thick but could you please explain to a doddery old man the meaning of ” Keep the stones for the pond, not the glasshouse.” I am trying hard to get it but at the risk of terrible humiliation, please explain it to me.

    I will also pray for you at Knock!!

  38. The same two guys stuck to the ground in this year’s final again. I think this sports psychologist attached
    to the team is a complete joke. Was it not his job to make sure that every player turned up mentally.
    One of our midfielders and one of our half forwards looked totally out of tune with the game.
    Should not happen in an AI final.

  39. You don’t do Knock Joe, so you say, so how how the hell are you goin to pray for John Cuffe……………………better trying to pray to the real JC methinks

  40. My God there is an unbelievable amount of Shit talk going on here.

    Some Supporters are so fickle and bitter especially in Mayo. We lost another All Ireland due to a number of factors, not just why freeman was taken off or Mayo not coming out like dogs!

    Their was a piece written on this site before the AI about the first 10 minutes and how Mayo needed to start well blah blah. Rocket science it ain’t. We had the dubs in alot of bother before they got their first goal in the 16th minute. They were clueless and had no answer to us at all. It was a real sucker punch and gave them confidence. Like last year, basic errors and a lack of luck let us down.

    1.14 in an all Ireland final is no bad score. In fact it’s the most we have scored in any AI. It doesn’t matter a shit about scores from play etc. scores are scores. In 2010 cork beat down and Daniel gouldings 45’s & frees won them the game. Nearly 70% of their scores came from placed balls. It’s all about performance on the day. Players we expected to perform and lead to glory just didn’t. Why that was isn’t the managers fault, what happened on a bus or a hotel etc. it’s just performing on the day. Horan has preached that throughout his reign. Playing to the best of your ability! Only a handful of players who started gave everything. The others have to live with the fact that they just shit the togs despite being prepared expertly.

    Will we be back? Definitely. Will we be challenging again for Sam? Of course we will. Will many teams want to face us? No! Do we fear anyone? Absolutely not! There is alot of good work done and I still believe that we are a better team than Dublin. That’s not being deluded, loyal to my county or plain bias. There is still alot of hunger in our players to reach the promised the land despite the disappointment of losing to Dublin. the majority of our players won’t rest till we win the big one. And neither should we. Onwards & upwards. Feeling sorry for ourselves will get us no where.

    A phrase someone once posted on this site said “The work goes on, the cause endures and the dream shall never die”. We are getting closer. Don’t forget that.

  41. Patriot, nail on the head.

    To summarise some of the comments from the last 2 weeks:

    – Mayo have turned into a poor attacking force overnight.
    – We need a new manager.
    [Deleted].

  42. I haven’t had time to read thru all these posts but write off our provincial opponents at your peril. Galway bottomed out last year and will be back with a bite soon. I hope im wrong but I’m probably not. If it was us who had won one minor and two u21 all Ireland’s in the past few years we’d be raving about it!! A cautious, one step at a time provincial approach is required in 2014.

    Who here was in Tuam in 1995?? We got whipped that day. 12 months later we were arguably the best team in the country. A lot can change over the course of a year.

    On the topic if the post… We have as good a squad as most out there so certainly we have a very decent shot at it in ’14 …freshness and appetite will be key.

  43. CHRIST
    Was feeling depressed all evening thinking of what might
    have been even with over a week gone it still hurts.especially
    with all the talk of the disagreements in the squad. why oh why
    was it had to happen on the day of the final and 31 other counties
    chomping at the bit to get a chance to play in an all ireland final
    looking at Clare on Sat I was overjoyed with their win fair play to them I say
    they are a close unit .we had it all during the year 12 players getting on
    score sheets and so forth.and on final day we craved for another 30seconds
    to earn a draw. why oh why. No Willie Joe we wont win Sam next year.
    we are as close as we ever were in my opinion a better chance than 96/97
    as the age profile is much younger now.I ask the question. Has Horan Lost the dressing Room ? Is it time for a new direction ? A new voice ? I dont know.
    its just a pity we didnt leave our shenanagans till Boxing Day

  44. Oh and additionally, to win an All-Ireland final you just have to work really, really hard and do everything right. Simple!

    Glad we sorted this all out!

  45. As for the original post – of course we CAN do it. Actually doing it is another matter.

    It will take a lot of work and only some tweaking. Not as much as is suggested in my opinion. James might target a league final again this year, considering it is likely to be in New York, and probably only a week before we play there in the first round. It would be ideal considering we have to wait 5-6 weeks after that (we hope!!) before playing again.

    Can’t wait already.

  46. I can’t see Dillion playing next year prob the only retiree on the panel I imagine.. I’ve seen enough of varley to make me rip out the few bits of hair I’ve left,Kevin Mac needs to discover his form wat happened to him this year?? Aiden needs to turn up for the big day,rob hennelly is a good keeper but clarke wud have put brogan into the upper cusak so I wud like him back between the sticks, andy and Micky conroy good forwards but neither wud frighten any fullback line scoring wise..sorry lads I prob come across as bitter but like most this final was worse than any other..

  47. MayoMark, I hope WJ finally throws you out of here and notes your ip address otherwise I wont contribute any further comments or observations. By the way I spent 5 years in the French Foreign legion so I know a a thing or two about fighting to the death sonny.

    Not surprised you always seem to appear at closing time.

  48. We all give out about the unreal hype in Mayo, yet we’ve the ball thrown in on the 2014 Champoinship already and many have us already confirmed winners.

    However, TG there is also a lot of good sense come from the high balls WJ has put up over the last 8 days. Here’s my long version of the cure.

    Remember this time last year. Everyone focused on the bad start and Donegal not letting us close the gap beyond 3/4 points. The real problem was the 37 or 38 times our lads gave away possession in the 70 odd minutes. It wasn’t rocket science that you couldn’t win an AF with that many turnovers. And eureka, most of those turnovers came from bad kick passes out of defence. And in fairness JH and the management cured that fault. Possession is king – you can win if you haven’t the ball.

    However, it has been well trashed out here and a blind man could see our problems:

    James Horan has many wonderful managerial traits but just like John Maughan’s big days with Mayo, JH can get pretty much everything done except the final tactical preparation selection and manage reactionary tactics under the pressure of AF Sunday.
    The good news is that both are curable.

    He needs a wily, experience tactician that has a management track record and no ego. He needs him in the stand and in two-way communications with him. Not a running commentary but the confidence of a trusted and experience tactical brain to get advice on a half dozen key occasions during a match. That is what needs to replace the solo walk and odd word from James Nallen in his ear.

    JH is good at getting good people around him, and if we have learned any over-riding fact over the last two years and indeed previously, generally our forwards are not performing as a unit. Marquee forwards will emerge when the unit functions well. We need a Forwards Coach.

    This year, we depended on our back driving forward in a direct manner. It became an over-reliance and when we had to defend against Tyrone for 20/25 minutes and again against Dublin, the forwards were not an effective unit. A Forwards Coach would have our players going direct towards goal (not the sideline or corners), players running on their shoulders, and varying that style with long low passes to out in front forwards. And, shooting practice makes perfect from ever angle inside the 45. Like tiger Woods with 100 three foot putts after every competive round. It’s not rocket science but it needs specialist attention.

    Finally, we either need to change our video analysis or who converting the findings into plans. I’m obviously referring to Cluxton’s kick-outs. First of all e is genius, and a master of great kick passing/kick-outs. However, Kerry put him and Dublin under pressure in this area. Of course, he was going to try new moves, but nothing that he hasn’t done many times before against other teams. Analysis is not just about the last game! Preventing primary possession from Cluxton’s kick-outs would starved their forwards and given Mayo’s forwards more possession and we assume more scores. We failed in this area when we should have succeeded! Again not rocket science.

    James Horan knows that learning curves are a fact of life, but he should also know that the greatest GAA supporters would like him and his team to prepare for all the knowns, because there are really no unknowns. There are just some things not properly prepared for and the best way of doing things on any given day!

    Do it James, you and your team do it because unlike about 26 other senior county football teams next year, Yes, You Can!

  49. Tom 61

    Where did you spend 5 years?

    Doesn’t sound like it was fun.

    have to say thank you to Willie joe.
    The site has been therapeutic, not big into emotions but had a few low days last week.

    Onwards and upwards. Hope jh lets us know his intentions sooner than later.

  50. French Foreign Legion David. Was grand once you got used to been kicked (Literally) out of bed at 4 am. There are a few (well one with many logins) on here who wouldn’t last 5 seconds in the legion. He might miss porter and supermacs too much, the poor little boy, who has never lived.

  51. Couple of posts there really annoy me.

    Total disrespect for an opinion that differs from their own, you could excuse such an attitute if the comments they totally dismiss were outlandish or completely untrue but wvery second person you talk to or anyone in the media from bomber to spillane to p joyce says the same bloody thing,oh aye and guess what them three guys have in common.
    Mayo support can keep deluding themselves for years to come but ill not be fooled again, thst forward line will not win an all Ireland.Complicate it all you want by over anslysing but its really simple ,we need two flair forwards and we need to tell a couple of lads to make do watching from the stands next yesr.

  52. We are a top 4 team with JH and perform in League, Qualifiers etc as such. Once you get to these 1 offs/semis/finals margins can dictate winners/losers – rem United v bayern 1999 – 2 very late goals ascended Ferguson to greatness when he was heading towards questions. It wasn’t anything Ferguson did or didn’t do it was just the way the game went. However, luck didn’t get his team to multiple finals and consistent successes. Getting his team consistently there – they had to be good enough to reach that final stage and repeatedly reach it or the semis time and again – that was his success. Horan has our team in top 4, he has us in finals and semis and contention consistently League & CShip – after that margins dictate who will succeed. But you need to be a contender for top 4 to even contest an outcome. I am convinced we have a top 4 team that on it’s day would take out any of the other Big teams. Fact is any cup game on it’s day can go any way when you get to the last few top teams, look at Real Madrid and tell me they haven’t had a marquee team and yet Champs League success has eluded them of late. Mayo are close – very close – and our greatest mistake would be not to realise how close we are, and risk losing JH and his consistency to get us again to where we might get the chance & ultimate result …and we can almost guarantee that we’ll have a great tip at the title if he is in charge. It is a lottery once down to the last few but we will be one of 4 tickets in the last draw come Autumn after that its down to the day! Enough analysis on what could have etc we’re thereabouts and our focus should be to remain at least there! And we must support our management & team on their persistence & suffering of tough losses in the last stage of making this a real possibility. Because they know they are close! Sam 14.

  53. Dont see the point of talking about 2014 when we cant say for sure if j.h will remain on. As a result of this fallout we cant even say for sure if any of the team haven’t decided to call it a day. No point in papering over the cracks all is not rosie in the camp and talking about next years final is mad stuff. Now sorry w.j if you think this harse but you can delete it as you normally do

  54. Tom

    Sounds like a tough station. What do you reckon was going on in the minds of the lads that didn’t perform?

    If you are James horan,
    What 3 things do you change apart from personnel on the field ?
    ( departures there are a given)

  55. “MayoMark, I hope WJ finally throws you out of here and notes your ip address otherwise I wont contribute any further comments or observations.”

    For what exactly? For challenging you? I have little time for fans who believe that a bunch of amateur players owe them some sort of debt. And I will call you out on that every single time.

    RE your “closing time” comment, an odd one to say the least. I actually don’t drink a drop and never have.

    RE your five years in the FFL, fair play to you, I’m sure it was quite an experience. It is, however, irrelevant to this conversation.

    As for your “many logins” allusion, another odd one. I have no problem challenging your comments and don’t need to make multiple accounts to do so.

  56. Cloud9: “The real problem was the 37 or 38 times our lads gave away possession in the 70 odd minutes.”

    Bingo. It was unbelievable the amount of unforced errors the boys made, very frustrating to watch but unfortunately, in any sport on any given day, even on the biggest day, this can happen. We are not far off. I would say we are within a whisker. We didn’t turn bad overnight and I do think the lads will recover and start again.

    I assume Cillian’s surgery is sooner rather than later, so will he even be back for any of the league?

  57. Just checking in and glad to see debate still raging. Can we win in 2014? Right now I would say we can and we have to try. It will be so so tough but I have faith in James Horan and the lads. Think about it. How close were we to pulling the necessary performance out of the bag? Dont let the frustration you feel right now to water down your support for the team. It hurts right now. It hurts like hell. All we can do is keep on trucking. We have the easy job as someone said here before “supping tae and eating biscuits!” The lads will be slogging their guts out during this time. Mayo forever

  58. “I think this sports psychologist attached
    to the team is a complete joke”

    I think actually that the psychologist got some things spot on this year. For a full year Mayo were seen at the most cynical team in the country. Then, this year, every single interview given to the media stressed how much work was done on the tackle in training. I don’t believe that Mayo improved that much in the tackle, perhaps to a small degree, but I do think that this constant referring to the work being done in training on it caused a perception shift from the media and general public. I would guess that this advice came directly from the psychologist.

  59. Lads, lads, lads – the nighttime is for sleeping not for annoying each other on here.

    MayoMark – you started this one, with that crack about Tom61. I’m redirecting all your comments via moderation from now on until I’m happy that you’re going to abide by the rules for comments.

    Tom61 – you retaliated (again) and wandered wildly off-topic (again) so you’re off to comment moderation for a while too.

    Alrightman – careful what you say or you’re headed in the same direction as well.

  60. I dont understand how so many contributors are now questioning the ability of this team when they were praising them on high before the AI what they would do to the Dubs etc.I am very disappointed that there are rumblings about some discord in the camp and I feel this should be discussed at County Board level where players who are the most important people in the whole set up , should be allowed to air their views .A ball should not be kicked until this matter, that is if it exists is sorted. No one be it management or players are bigger than the team.It should be put to bed discreetly and not played out in the National media.Going back to the performance on the day we all know what happened and we all have our own opinions, I think we should move on now try and get back to the place we were in just before the AI.There is a lot of talk about finding a marquee forward when we already have one already in Cillian O Connor.Get the lad in to hospital and have his shoulder sorted, he deserves our support and gratitude for what he has put his body through just so that he could play for his County without any finiancial rewards.He still u/21I think and given the proper support and treatment and enough time to get back to full health then you will see the asset he has to bring to the table, we all wanted him patched up and playing but in hindsight was it the correct thing to do, only the medical people know that.A lot of people are suggesting that we should have spotters around the ground linked to the manager that may be fine if the manager will act on this advice.I personally dont agree in this instance when we already have such a person already on board in the shape of Donie Buckley they dont come any better than Donie.There is another matter to adressed and that is the panel, out of a panel of 24 or32 or whatever surely they should know that they all cant be on the team on the big day, if they have the interest of the County Team at heart they would not complain, but consider themselves lucky to be part of the set up
    There are plenty of young lads that would give their eye teeth to exchange with them, There were no rumblings emanating from Enda Gilvarry’s team and Id bet that some of those players never saw any game time in the championship, they have an AI medal in their back pocket and have contributed to a major achievement and progressed as players and are in the unique situation where some young lads only dream of
    What we dont want in this county any more is Prima Donnas we had those pricks before and where did that get us.We also want fair play for players and no favouritism of any kind fellows know themselves whether they are good enough.So now it is upwards and onwards clear the air start again because sucess is not too far away, the Mayo public have given their views where they are all singing from the same hymn sheet so it is up to mgt.and players to take heed.

  61. My answer is no. I think a hard winning mentality is required, even more so now, to get across the line. Regardless of what happened on the field or on the line this year or last year I do not believe that was there. Neither was it there in the League final last year.

    There is only one All Ireland I believe Mayo were robbed in and that was 96. The best and hungriest teams on the day won the other six.

  62. I agree with Philo, we have a very good panel and team.
    James Horan and his backroom team have done a fantastic job.
    We are, so so close.
    Why make drastic changes now ?
    What we need now is for Management and Panel to sit down together, privately, where everyone gives his views, greviences and everything is discussed openly.Clear the air.
    As a group,united, they decide what they want,(a few additions to panel) , re, group, and bring there requirements to the County Board.
    With every one knowing where they stand, they move forward, carrying the hurt and enormous experience gained, into 2014, using it as a wind in their sails.
    Of course we will be a force in 2014, we are nearley there, one last push, to get us over the line.
    Up Mayo

  63. There is one thing we can take from this is that we really are the second best team in the country, in o4 06
    i dont think we could say that and that showed in the final. lets see how the league goes and see what happens

  64. Interesting to note that a team on MiWadi & Biscuits finished up as All Ireland winners whilst the team with the Hydration Experts finished as runners-up.
    If one thing is to come from this I hope it is that ‘spin’ & ‘management speak’ will never again go unchallenged in Mayo football.
    Any manager has 3-4 years to get the job done … after that there are no excuses.
    If the manager has ‘maxed out’ as suggested by another poster or has lost too many people in the dressing-room (because of his selection & substitution decisions) then we should not waste 2014 in a futile cause.
    If this is not the case then he should continue for another year.
    From now on Mayo Football comes first.
    As another poster said above: ‘We have the bones of a very good team that needs a few new faces, a strong dose of venom and ruthlessness, and a bit of cuteness on the sideline’.

  65. Surely o Connor will play for ballintubber before having surgery?

    The club championship should be very interesting now, that’s what the focus should be on for the next few weeks. It will also be good for the players to get their minds off the AI final for a while. Apparently kiltane were very impressive last weekend. Tommy Conroy started at wing forward, anyone have word on how he played??

  66. WJ’s question is: will we do it in 2014?

    The answer is: we don’t know. There’s no way we can know, because:

    – we don’t know who the manager will be
    – we don’t know what forwards will have been parachuted in by August
    – we don’t know if the 2014 management will be ruthless enough to drop those who can’t hack the final
    – if the management are the same, we don’t know if they be humble enough to look at their own performance in the last two finals and make the necessary improvements

    I certainly think we can make the final.

    There’s no-one to seriously challenge us in Connacht – our next championship games against Sligo and Galway have to be in Castlebar, Roscommon on the road would be entertaining for a while but we have enough to beat them – so that’s Mayo into a quarter-final.

    If I had my way, I’d have us play Kerry and Cork – in whichever order – in the quarter and semi. The combination of beating both of those did both Donegal and Dublin a power of good in the last two years. I think such a scenario would bring Mayo into a final at a higher pitch than they were at in ’12/’13.

    But that would still leave the final. And Mayo need characters in the forward line that are not afraid of the final. We’re not bothered by quarters or semis any more but we have got to stand up to the big day when it is there for the winning.

  67. This is a post i have already put up on another occasion. No answers whatsoever.

    “Now lads and lassies, a slight side-step on the current thinking. I am asking a question, this is not an opinion in case anyone wants to have a go:
    Is it possible that all those easy victories might have had an effect on the mentality of the team?? I felt in the first half against Tyrone there might have been some complacency in the mentality.
    They were not the team we were used to seeing, no hunger. Just a thought.!!!
    Aidan O’Shea was the focus of a great amount of praise from everywhere before the match; he’s young, could it have gone to his head??”

    Are 95% of you thick or something?
    Get away from football and Mayo for a minute: In every sport if the head isn’t right you fail. Take Golf, Athletics, Rugby, Soccer stars, Boxers, etc; etc; their mental state at the time is of the most importance. They can be at their peak, top of their game, and if the head isn’t right, they are fucked!!!

    Would you build a magnificent mansion with a crap foundation, so it could fall down? You will build a team with a flawed mentality and expect them to win?? You can have 15 All Stars on your team and an ordinary bunch of footballers, attacking like dogs, with
    a great hunger, will beat them every time!!!

    Further up the page I have mentioned Leitrim’s win over Mayo in a Connacht Final. No comments. I despair!!!
    We need to think outside the box, without our Green and Red spectacles.

  68. Jack o Connor doesn’t take kildare job but takes Kerry minor job instead.

    They are building for a serious attack in the years ahead, their under 15 and 17 development squads dished out good beatings to all before them. Tournament down in Killarney only a few weeks ago, they trashed Mayo in the final at 17s, after mayo beat Galway in semi final.

    They are going to he back with a serious team soon enough to replace the last serious team.

  69. Sean
    You sound frightened of Kerry. Mayo just won a minor title and tipp have been beating Kerry underage in the last few years. They’re not gods, only in others minds

  70. A lot of people saying that Horan should go. And who exactly should replace him? I don’t see too many managers lined up to take that job. Some of the players let Mayo down in the final. That’s the way football is. Some of the Dublin players did the same and no one is giving out about them. As for alleged rows on buses and at citywest maybe it will clear the air. Any team I have been involved with the starting 15 love the manager and the 15 subs hate him.
    James if you are smart walk away. Don’t think you can win with this situation. But I think you will stay, and I think Mayo will get to the semis and then we will see do the players push on. Its down to the players on the day, not anyone else.
    Up Mayo

  71. Joe Mc, Your re-post is almost as confusing as the original one. You state that you are not expressing an opinion only asking questions yet your post doesn’t read that way. For what it is worth I will attempt to answer your “questions”.
    Is it possible that all those easy victories might have had an effect on the mentality of the team?? I don’t believe so if you read the interviews they said to a man that they are just looking to improve each game. Furthermore the Roscommon and London victories were fairly underwhelming.
    Aidan O’Shea was the focus of a great amount of praise from everywhere before the match; he’s young, could it have gone to his head?? Yes it might have, or No it didn’t. We will never know for sure as the only one that knows that is himself. Personally, the injury he picked up early in the first half and then being asked to play a game that he is least equipped to do contribued to a poor showing.
    Are 95% of you thick or something? Highly unlikely, there probably is maybe 20% to 25% of us thick but I doubt that 95% of us are. We may not agree with your point but that does not make us thick.
    if the head isn’t right, they are fucked!!! Is that a question or a statement of fact, i.e. Mayo head were not right?
    Would you build a magnificent mansion with a crap foundation, so it could fall down? No, I wouldn’t. what has house construction got to do with the failure of Sunday week?
    You will build a team with a flawed mentality and expect them to win?? Again, Is that a question or a statement of fact, i.e. Mayo have a flawed mentality?
    You can have 15 All Stars on your team and an ordinary bunch of footballers, attacking like dogs, with a great hunger, will beat them every time!!! I don’t believe that. Again, it is only my opinion but I don’t believe that.
    Leitrim’s win over Mayo in a Connacht Final. No comments. I despair!!! Please elaborate on this because I fail to see where the Leitrim victory has any relevance to our defeat.
    We need to think outside the box. I agree.
    without our Green and Red spectacles. Maybe so, maybe not. We need a clear head at this point because I think we could go either way, i.e. win Sam in 2014, or fall away like we did after 1997.

  72. I didn’t hear the details of the alleged bust ups but if James can gather all the troops and tell them put the past behind them and move on, then I see no reason whatsoever that it will not be a repeat final. Why should we fear anyone else bar Dublin? People say Cork, Galway, Tyrone etc will improve, then so should we, if Andy, COC etc are fully fit and a few additions from the youth, we can easily win Connaught, beat a qualifier, then Cork in the semi and Dublin in the final. James & Buckley must stay on, if one of those leaves then I think we will regress. James has done wonders for Mayo football, that is not to say he didn’t make mistakes against Dublin but he will learn from these and that can only improve us. I hope we havn’t seen the last of Richie Feeney either, I highly rate him and 2014 could be a big year for him. As I said, the League will be very important this year, it is something Mayo should seriously try to win to send out a statement of intent. Less pessimism, this team gave us a year to remember and more to come hopefully. Chin up.

  73. Ideally, beating NY followed by a semi in Roscommon, followed by a Connacht final v Galway would be the perfect path available to the last 8 should we win all 3 games. I think a trip to the Hyde and a Galway final would both be a huge test of character. If we get over both, great. Anything can happen. But that’s all hypothetical, we can’t control the draw, but Connacht is very important for us next year.

  74. Ideally new york in the quarter , leitrim in the semi, sligo in the final , london in the quarter final , kilkenny in the semi and brigids u-7 girls in the all ireland.

    we must hope that james horan stays put , he is a great young manager and the experience of the last 3 years will stand to him. If we won next year we could be looking at a mickey harte scenario with him.
    roll on the draw thursday.

  75. Lads, it’s true that over analysis leads to paralysis – just look at Padraig Harrington.

    But we cannot fail to act on the clear facts as I outlined them earlier (about 12.30 this morning and no I hadn’t been to the pub).

    If we we don’t learn from mistakes, we are doomed. JH, Nallen, Buckley and Co should stay on for another campaign in 2014 and I hope they do. But he needs to add to the back room. He needs to fill his management team’s big tactical reaction void with a very experience and proven man. The candidate should be calm, a good communicator, an excellent reader (from the stand) of how a game is developing and a knowledge of what resources we have to change matters for the better in the heat of battle. Any suggestions for this key role to fill the current void?

    He also needs to appoint a specialist forwards coach. We need our forward talent operating as a clinical unit and much more directly. The kind of person I like to see doing this job would be the likes of Kevin McStay.

    I’ve said the rest earlier! Learn from our mistakes and those of other teams, we can’t last long enough to make them all ourselves! Onwards and hopefully upwards!

  76. Dave.
    Whatever about frightened , I admit I have an almighty gra for Kerry football and I just believe with them not being at their best last couple of years , we should of made hay while the sun shone type thing.

    It was a great opportunity to smash and grab two all Irelands and I can’t help feel that is the way we look back on this period in the years to come.

  77. Remember 51 the country is flooded with good county managers at the moment not to mention kevin mc stay who has won an a.i. Title at club level which is far harder to do so than county level . As for them not lining up to take the job were still waiting on j.h to stop pricking about and let us as supporters of the game and fellow county men know what his intensions are. We all deserve that

  78. I too hope that Horan stays and whoever he deems fit to help us. Buckley must be an integral part of the set-up and he seemed to be given his head by Horan to do whatever he saw fit to develop us as a team. I believe we are much better than we showed against Dublin. They were waiting to be beaten, had stopped playing and were happy to just foul through the rest of the game. We didn’t take advantage and will have to live with the fact that ’13 was the one for us but we shit ourselves. Now, accept it and move on.
    We are 50% better then we were last year and another 25% improvement should see us there or thereabouts. Players and management must learn the lessons from the final, however hard that may be. Whoever has to be cut from the panel has to be cut and fresh forwards, in particular, must be brought in as a priority and integrated into the squad. In my mind there are 2 forwards that should be cut from the set-up as they have been tried and tested and we know what they can offer in a final. Not enough. There is another that should be retained for his experience and influence but only as a 25 minute man, i.e. a man with a cool experienced head to come in with fresh legs who can take up good positions on the pitch and positively influence the game, he can also help to guide the younger forwards and help their development. There is another who I think doesn’t offer any more than Carolan but lacks Carolans pace, power and aggression so therefore, in my opinion, should not start before Carolan this Winter.

  79. Anyone booked NY for May bank Holiday weekend? Should be NY v Mayo on Sunday May 4th 2014.

  80. Alrightman, what do you mean that he should let us know his intentions? He has 1 more year on his contract and therefore we should assume that he intends to see it out.

  81. Steve, Yeah. The flights are booked and paid for. Myself and 6 others are heading out and have been planning it since January. Any idea when the Croke Park season ticket is open for applications? I think I will go with that as opposed to the Cairde Maigh Eo.

  82. Pebblesmeller – I don’t know. I took the option to buy the second All Ireland ticket so renewed for another year. Needless to say it will be my last year with Cairdre.

    I was worried when someone mentioned that the NY game could be a week later but I assume it will be Sunday the 4th as it has been the last few years. A group of 3 of us have booked. We were originally to go this month but when Mayo made it all the way to the final so we changed flights to coincide with the Mayo game next May….the joy’s of being a Mayo fan eh?

  83. Last time we were out there in 2009 the match was on Sunday May 10th! I’ll hold off booking till the master fixtures list is published in December.

  84. Pebblesmeller, old pal. (Arm round the shoulder, slap on the back. Hugs, people would talk)
    First of all, thank you for going to the bother of reading and analyzing that post of mine. I do appreciate it. That is the purpose of my comments, to stimulate a discussion and hopefully it might succeed.
    I am not trying to have an argument with you; that would defeat the whole purpose!!

    Now my “I am asking a question, this is not an opinion in case anyone wants to have a go:” is just that. Question marks ??? are questions and how you can read it any other way?? I don’t understand the confusion and I don’t want anyone to have a go.

    “Is it possible that all those easy victories might have had an effect on the mentality of the team??” Another question! How do you know it hadn’t an effect? It can, has, and will happen to teams. Mayo are no different.

    “Aidan O’Shea was the focus of a great amount of praise from everywhere before the match; he’s young, could it have gone to his head??” Another question! He is a young lad with a life outside football. I’m sure he has loads of female admirers, etc. (I never had. They looked at me and ran. I was psychologically scarred). How often have young players in all sports let things distract them??

    Why, oh why are you putting yourself in the 95%. Surely you are in the 5%. That was not my most accurate statement. I had to come up with something!!

    “if the head isn’t right, they are fucked!!!” That’s a statement that applies to everybody in all sports, without exception. Could have worded it better.

    “Would you build a magnificent mansion with a crap foundation, so it could fall down?”No, I wouldn’t. what has house construction got to do with the failure of Sunday week? Your answer is right but it is just an analogy. Jesus wept.

    “You will build a team with a flawed mentality and expect them to win??” Again, Is that a question or a statement of fact, i.e. Mayo have a flawed mentality? I am going to cry!!! It is a question and again, an analogy. There was something wrong with the Mayo heads. Would you deny that?? If there is a flaw in any constituent in the foundation of a building, it will effect that building. True or false?? Another analogy!

    Did you read my post on Leitrim? That answers the 15 All Stars as well. They were a poor team, fought like dogs and beat a highly fancied, complacent Mayo team. I was on the sideline and was delighted.

    That’s the last post I will answer. Hard work. Good luck to you.

  85. Pebblesmeller i know he has a year left but i dont expect him to see it out after the feud between himself and players and his decision making or lack of it on sideline in both finals i really cant see it being of any benefit him waiting on

  86. There’s nothing mentally flawed in the players, they showed that all year long. Whats flawed was the shooting in the first half, if half of them had went over Mayo would have been comfortably ahead at the break.
    Simple as that, we had our chances and didn’t take them.
    It was our worst shooting display since the London game and will make the players cringe when they look at the video of it, decent shots that drifted wide, so bloody frustrating. Those wides were not caused by mental flaws, some days they fly over, other days they won’t.

    For now, a break is well deserved and get everything lined up for 2014. Did I read correctly that Darren Coen gave someone a lesson in scoring at the weekend
    4 09?
    Is that right?

  87. Steve
    The piece is written by Aiden Henry.I do not think it is one sided more like it gives the bare facts of the stupid decisions that were made on the sideline that handed Dublin an All Ireland.It also lists seven questions that the Mayo supporters want answered.There is a County Board meeting next Monday night and if the Clubs in this County are any good they will stand up and demand answers for their County players and supporters.The county board and JH have gone to ground since the Monday evening of the home coming in Castlebar.They were well able to come out and talk the week before the final when they looked for clubs to raise thousands so the clubs could get some of the tickets they needed.Its time they came out now and tell the supporters the truth.There is little point in covering over the cracks and waiting for them to open wider the next time

  88. Pacar

    It could be that they are all deciding on what path to take, jh walks or stays. It’s a big decision because whoever would come in would have big boots to fill and if jh stays he ll need to spread the load on making decisions in a big game, he may not want that.

    We re at a crossroads that will make or break the team as it stands, even allowing for a couple of new faces up front

  89. Agreed David,that’s why I think all this crap needs to be cleared up as soon as possible to put people’s minds as rest an we can all move on together to next season.Nobody wants to see this team fall apart and I think with a few changes and a few new faces we will be very close again.Remember 96 and 97,we didn’t compete in 98 and Galway won a handy all Ireland. I’m not saying it will be Galway but if Dublin slip back like Donegal did this year I would like to think we would be in the best possible position to take advantage of it

  90. Id have known who wrote that telegraph article even if no name was attached to it. Its not the first time this self appointed guardian and defender of Mayo supporters has written such stuff. Now hes bleating on about the huge costs involved in getting Mayo to AIF, while a large debt hangs over McHale Park.When I buy my Co Board ticket its in the hope that it contributes to the training fund rather than pay off debts

  91. @Joe mac…you raise some good points. Indeed the mental state of the players is of critical importance on game day. From the evidence, it seems that at least 3-5 of them were not mentally tuned into the game..for whatever reason. I suspect the occasion got to some, whereas the fracas in the squad got to others? I don’t know. It’s pointless going over it again as its very disappointing at this level and that it could happen on this day, above all days.

    Getting to the mental approach thing though….Tom61 has come closest I think to identifying why we lost this one. Lookit, there’s no doubt all the players from 1-15, and the sidelines went out there to win that game. They believed, as we did, that they had the answers and the know-how, to out play Dublin, for they had studied the game tapes, practiced the drills again, and again and again. Nothing was left to chance.
    But if we are to be honest, with the exception of a few players, only a few showed a burning desire, like men possesses, to win the thing. It’s hard for me to say that, but if we are honest, I think it’s true.

    Just look at the previous demolition jobs we done on our arch enemies…Galway and Donegal. We didn’t just bate them…we demolished them…why? Because we wanted to prove a point, make a statement….Galway is always an easy one to get riled up over and Donegal well, we were hurting from last year, and wanted to redeem themselves. That day, they were on a mission to redeem themselves and the vast majority of them played like men possessed! Sadly, they just didn’t bring that same intensity, desire, mental attitude, win at all costs, play like men possessed to the match against Dublin. That’s the saddest part really, because if they did, we’d we All Ireland Champions.

    @Sean…not sure if anything will be clearer after the CB meeting.

    Btw, looking forward to seeing some of you muppets over here for the match in Gaelic park in may 2014 😉

  92. God lads it doesn’t get any easier 9 days on. Thinking of it again. First half. We got 8 pints and kicked 9 wides. Then of Dublins 1-4 in the first half, 1-2 was gifted to them. We could have gone in at half time leading 17 to 02 if them 9 wides went over!!!. Or even say 14 to 02 if 6 of them wides went over. All this against the best side in the Country. We need 3 new faces in the front 6. Men who wont shit themselves in front of 83,000 on a perfect day for football in September. So 1996 v Meath might still be classed as the one we left after us but 2013 was a fairly good contender. They were there for the taking and we blew it. Christ have we not been through enough already. Feck it to hell anyway.

  93. Joe Mc, “what has house construction got to do with the failure of Sunday week? Your answer is right but it is just an analogy. Jesus wept.” I was taking the piss man. 🙂 🙂 of course I know what you meant, I was attempting, and obviously failing, to lighten the mood.
    Look it, we all want the same thing and have different ways on how that aim should be achieved.
    Carolan has impressed me also and, for me, has to be started from the off next season. I was referring to McLoughlin in my comparison but I think Carolan can do the same job but with more of a physical edge in terms of power and breaking through tackles.
    by the way, thanks for putting me in the 5% of “not thickos”. that’s a first for me. 🙂 🙂

  94. Alrightman, point taken. I guess none of us know what exactly has gone on nor the actual mood in the camp. We will have to wait and see I reckon. I still think Horan and his backroom team deserve a little more respect than a witch hunt from the Connaught Telegraph though. This is the same Aiden Henry that predicted we would not get out of Salthill with a win.
    Let things run their course. I am sure that a review of the year was always on the cards irrespective of the outcome and we will have to wait for the outcome of that.
    Personally, I hope the management remain.

  95. So many fair weather supporters.

    Joe Mc ….you are so inconsistent it is hard to take anything you say seriously.And do you really need to swear so much?

  96. If we we don’t learn from mistakes, we are doomed, but don’t throw the baby out with the bath water.

    JH, Nallen, Buckley and Co should stay on for another campaign in 2014 and I hope they do. But JH needs to add to or replace one or two in the back room set-up in two specific areas?

    He needs to fill his management team’s big tactical void with a very experience and proven man. A Football man, calm, good communicator, an excellent reader (from the stand) of how a game is developing and a knowledge of what resources we have on the bench to change matters for the better in the heat of battle. An experience campaigner that work as part of a team out of the limelight. Again lads, any suggestions for this key role to fill the current void?

    I know I’ve said it before but he also needs to appoint a specialist forwards coach. We need our existing and any new forward talent operating at a different level, as a clinical unit and much more direct. Driving towards the oppositions goal, not towards the sideline or corner flag. He needs to be a respected former county (not necessarily Mayo), a no nonsense forward with a philosophy of directness, scoring accuracy and moulding a unit that will work so well together that their impossible to restrain. Any ideas on a candidate for this role?

    if we had that in place 20 months ago, we could have back to back titles now! Learn from the mistakes or we’re doomed…..

  97. What is going on. I have not being reading the blog for the past few days and all of a sudden looks like we are gone into self destruction in Mayo. Talk of bust ups. A push to get James Horan out. This is madness. We have just lost the final by 1 point. Chin up and get stuck in again. Of course its hard, it hurts like hell, but lets not destroy what we have now and have to start all over again. Come on Mayo!

  98. Hi All,
    Please forgive me for posting as I am the last person you want to hear from but I just want to make one point. We didn’t win an All Ireland from 1995 to 2011, but the bad years that I remember most are the teams under Caffery who thought all they had to do was turn up. The 2006 semi final sticks out in my mind because when Mayo went to the Hill end he should have got the Dublin team to go the opposite way but he didn’t and he got involved. Under Caffery’s reign the Dubs were so arrogant it sickened me and every other good Dub. I am not saying for one second that Mayo are arrogant but a manager makes a difference on a team and thank God for Pat Gilroy and now Jim Gavin.

    Kind regards.
    Martín the Dub

  99. I just read the Connaught Telegraph piece and it is yet another fine piece of investigative journalism from the self-proclaimed voice of the Mayo supporters, Aiden Henry. Bar the questions which are reasonable and valid to the discussion, I have never read so much shite in all my life.
    He is worrying about the cost incurred by the county board of €500,000 to get a squad to an All Ireland? That’s a drop in the ocean. Multiply that by 2 and you are still below the costs incurred by the Dublin county board. I don’t remember him highlighting the cost of getting Jack O’Se to come up and make us a laughing stock. And believe me, there was a very large cost involved!
    He is worried about the debt on McHale Park? Well why was he not so inquisitive when the thing was being designed and “put out to tender?”. The planning, design and construction of McHale Park represented one of the most scandalous uses of money and showed complete disregard to the planning laws. It cost more than a cantilever roofed stadium would have yet there is a series of galvanised pillars running along its length. And there was no planning for the “Longkesh” eyesore on McHale road. I can’t remember him being so vocal in this regard.
    As for Keane and McHale not getting runs this year? Well, neither are as good as Barrett or Cafferkey. Simple as.
    Furthermore, the banquet tickets were €80. €35 went to City west and €45 to the county board. That’s €45 by 10 heads at 160 tables giving €72,000. Add in the 400 tickets at €20 for the “afters” brings the total up to €80,000. For 1 night. That’s 16% recouped in 1 night. That might make Aiden sleep a little more soundly as he seems to be very concerned about the running costs. All of a sudden.
    Ask the questions by all means but don’t try and turn it into Watergate for fucks sake.

  100. justoutsideballagh

    Understandable reaction.

    But we must ask if we were good enough to get to the last two AF, what failings caused us to fall short in both.

    In these pages most comments are are from great Mayo supporters, most long suffering.
    They’re not a mob looking for scapegoats or scalps, just answers that will make sure the same mistakes aren’t made again and the management team fixes what can be fixed, and that includes their own flaws too!

  101. “state-of-the-art Elverys MacHale Park stadium” I don’t know whether to laugh or cry at this stage.

  102. Well said Pebblesmeller re telegraph article. Hit the nail exactly on the head.

  103. And while my gander is up, just who does he, or indeed anyone on here who argues that Horan should go, recommend to move us forward? Before anyone starts on about McStay, St. Brigids were already a very good team that ploughed huge sums of money into the senior teams. And, they won it by a point with the last kick of the game. And he was even stumbling as he hit it. So McStay didn’t reinvent the game and preaching from the safety of the Sunday Game studio with Dessie “eat the buns” Cahill is one thing, but putting your neck on the line, calling the shots (rightly or wrongly) and not getting €50,000 from RTE to do it, is a complete other thing.
    I am not blind to Horans failing the last day but I am getting sick to my bollox of the witch-hunt to get him out. If I was Horan reading some of the anti-Horan comments on here and in the Connaught I would be inclined to say “well fuck the lot of ye, if ye know so much about it all, have at it”
    He didn’t fluke 2 county titles with Ballintubber. And furthermore, if any player, ANY PLAYER, steps out of line and against the managers wishes and his code of ethics then, for me, it is out the fucking door for that player. Rapid.
    We are close to winning it. I still believe this despite the final. But now we need a cool and steady hand on the throttle to get us through these waters. As I have said previously, this could go either way, win it next year or disappear and lose the lot.

  104. McStay to take the Kildare job? Just read this on banter page, is there truth in it?

  105. Pebblesmeller i respect yer views on j.h i just wonder if he was to remain at the helm what kind of trust would he and the rest of panel have with each other. If there is no trust we wont get too far

  106. Keep my comment WJ. I cant be bothered contributing to a forum which allows things like mayomark (one of his many names) to continue when you know he is a trouble maker.

  107. Do ye think Dillon will stick it out much longer, four losing finals now has to take its toll at some stage.

  108. Well I hope that Dillion does remain. He is only 30 but he has 10 years of hard football under his belt. He is the “20 minute man” I referred to in a previous post. His calmness, experience and ability to find space on the field could be invaluable.
    I can still see him free on the Cusack side screaming to McLoughlin for the ball, no-one within 25 yrds of him. He screamed and screamed for the ball but it never came. Jesus he fucked McLoughlin from a height afterwards. Just another “flashback” from the day.

  109. That’s your choice, Tom, but it’s a bit rich of you to accuse others of making trouble given the amount of stirring you’ve been up to yourself over the past week or so.

  110. Point out a bit WJ, doesn’t exist. You don’t mind people using horrible words like fuck but cant see the funny side of someone who seriously thinks chips are the national dish. I just don’t get that one, sorry.

  111. I think he will hang it up meself Sean…after four final defeats.
    Honestly, I’m not sure he will make the team come spring anyway. I want to see some of the young bucks tried. Eff it, why not.

  112. Sadly, I feel his performance levels have tapered off with each one. This year we didn’t get him on the ball enough but against that he never really troubled the Dublin half back line. Last year, up on 60% of Donegal scores came through Lacey and Dillion didn’t shut him down enough that day. However, looking back at that one, he was asked to do a job he wasn’t suited to. I thought he was brilliant against Tyrone and was instrumental in getting us into the game. I know the backs got the points on the board but Dillion was spreading play and passes and moving the Tyrone defence around the pitch.
    We do not have enough quality experienced forwards to let him go. Either in the full forward line or a “Canavan” role of 30 minutes when the game is there to be won. Particularly against tiring defenders and when there is more space on the pitch.

  113. Pebblesmeller

    I’m with you on Horan staying on, but what what do you say about the obvious need for some changes. Changes that are needed, not changes for change sake!

    He needs an experience tactical right-hand man, by his side or in the stand, but being listened to. Not being appears to be JH’s Achilles heal.

    He also needs a man dedicated to moulding existing and new forwards into a much more effective direct an scoring unit. And so be it if McLoughlin can resurrect his great 2012 form or Dillon can stay fit and get back to his best, they will have every right to their places.
    Don’t turn on players, fix the system, the cracks – don’t paper over them!

  114. It just kind of amazes me sometimes how he can be so good in games like quarters and semis and then just keeps going missing in finals, a man beside me during the final gave me a rather odd explanation for Dillons shyness come final day, he reckoned his hands are too small.

  115. That piece in the Connaught telegraph is written by a journalist who more than likely can’t recall writing it…. Take from that what you will…. Plus he was perhaps asked to publish the tripe by a member of our beloved county board who only care about money & damn all else. The mayo team costs are from the professionalism brought by JH to our team and every penny is well spent. Look at where we are now compared to 2010. Look at the progress. Nobody else could have got us to where we are now. All you begrudgers have a very short memory.

  116. Cloud9 I would have no issue with anything you have stated. An experienced reader of the game to tip him off, or whisper in his ear would be no harm. As regards the forwards coach I am not convinced we need one. I think it was more a tactical problem the last day in that we had no overlapping runners and therefore very few occasions when we got 2 on 2, or 2 on 3 like we did v Donegal

  117. Sean, normally if a man is shy on the big occasion it is something else that is too small!!!

  118. Bye Tom,we got on fine before you came .This forum is on the go since ’07-I think it will survive your leaving

  119. What I mind, Tom, is when people such as you repeatedly fail to keep their comments within the house rules despite being repeatedly requested to do so. If it’s constant arguing that rocks your boat then this isn’t the place for it.

  120. I am leaving it at this Tom61. I have one account, and one only. And I am sure WJ could have a look at the IP address to confirm that.

    Anyways, I’m done with it now.

    Moving on!

  121. True but if you take the 2013 Championship, all our overlap advantages except for 20 minutes v Tyrone and again in phases of the Final were created by the backs driving out of defence.

    We need the forwards to do it themselves as a unit. On the day that we’re under pressure and the backs are occupied defending, we need them to do all the time. We probably have 8 or 9 forwards from all that played during this year that are good enough but they need to be more direct and more accurate. JH needs to have someone working this area as a speciality or take it on himself but he needs to develop a more ruthless streak to do that clinically !

  122. With regards to the Connaught Tele. article ,has financial income improved since Horans take over or has Mayo’s successes under him been more a drain than a gain to the coffers ?

  123. Pebblesmeller, that’s the curse about printed words, you can’t see the grin! I missed it! Good one!

  124. Finally got up the courage to watch the game on the tv tonight. It was not as bad as it seemed from 3 rows back on the Davin, on the day. Overall the dubs were a little sharper and that was the difference. The dubs made some serious errors too. It wasn’t a great game but there was a savage relentless pressure out there. As a result both teams made numerous schoolboy errors. There is much more than hope for this Mayo team with just a small bit of tweaking.

    All on here without exception want the same thing and that is for Mayo to win The All Ireland. So steady on with the pedantics and breaking down of the well intended posts of others. That shit serves nobody. As regards language, I’d much prefer (within a certain context) a good fuck to a good feck, as long as the context was a okay.

    “Come On Mayo!!!”

  125. McLoughlin and Aidan O Shea have been key players for us who didn’t do well in the final for different reasons. Had they played their normal game the story would have been totally different.
    McLoughlin was in line for an All Star last year and many here were very disappointed when he didn’t get it. He lost form in the league and has not reached the heights of last year and could well have been subbed in the final. I feel his confidence took a hit in the league when he played at corner forward. He is a good player and will come good again.
    Aidan O Shea is more of an attacking player and needs ball in hand as often as possible rather than chasing others around the field. We may need to rethink how we defend around the middle or else move Aidan into the forward line. He would be one awkward customer to defend against bursting onto the ball around the 45m line and being fed by the likes of McLoughlin or Keith Higgins off the shoulder. These three would give the strength and subtlety needed to open up a defence. And as regards marquee forwards it’s amazing how lads could achieve marquee status if they perform well and get a Celtic cross in their pocket!

  126. I’m not going to get into a debate with you, Tom – you’ve only pitched up here in the last two weeks and you’re acting like you own the joint. Either keep your comments within the house rules or go somewhere else – this isn’t a bloody arguing society.

  127. Sily article, with some bizarre ones in there.

    Apparently we are all very proud of the state-of-the-art MacHale Park (God almighty) and that “Donie Buckley, another unsung hero’s in Mayo’s massive strides.” Really? An unsung hero?

    “Will the likes of Alan Freeman, Richie Feeney, Kevin Keane, Shane McHale and others in the current panel be willing to take another year of frustration under Horan?” Is he for real here? James Horan put an awful lot of faith in Alan Freeman, who had not performed well for a long, long time, and was ultimately proven right. And what about Kevin and Shane? Are they frustrated because there are better players in front of them? That is a bizarre statement.

    Awful reading

  128. WJ
    my last post was in relation to Joe Macs reply to John Griffin and not in any way related to your reply to Tom61……………that it followed your post is pure coincidental.

  129. Thanks WJ and all you MGB scribes for the therapy over the last 9 days.
    It’s working!

    Oiche mhaith agus Maigh Eo Abu !!!

  130. Sean you pose a very straight forward and simple question there, and there are many like you asking themselves the same thing. A simple answer might be that in both finals Donegal and Dublin were better team on the day – better than maybe people have given them credit for. But I do think there is an issue with the sixty two year thing, call it what you like, but the weight of expectation on every Mayo team to finally win that elusive final, must pray heavily on the minds of the players as they tog out in the dressing room . Nerves will of course play a part but that should be the same for every team on the big day.

    My take on this years final was, that Mayo met in Dublin, a well oiled and very fit team that were not prepared to lie down or take a backwards step. This was something our lads hadn’t experienced all year, yes against Tyrone we struggled for most of the first half but the game was played at a much slower pace and once we found our rhythm we got back on track and took control. Dublin on the other hand had their homework done, were wise to our ways, dragged us all over the field and never let us settle into that usual rhythm we got so used to seeing all year.

    That said had the side line not panicked, which is what I think happened, we might have a fighting chance. Those seemingly bad call, has in my opinion seriously damaged James Horan’s credibility and unfortunately has undermined his authority in the eyes of the players. I doubt if he can ever regain that trust and confidence he once enjoyed, he will know that too, and for that reason I think he’ll step down as Mayo manager.

  131. I feel the hype building on here already.Mayo will win Sam in 2014, there is no doubt about it.

    That will shut up the nation who believe mayo men are only bottlers, chokers, softies and nostalgic dreamers.

  132. Tom 51 ya cant walk out on a job not finished so in rodney kings famous words “why cant we all just get along “

  133. Interesting comments about Cathal Carolan. I rate the guy very highly, he is probably the most improved player in the mayo set up this season along with freeman and S OShea. However, having watched the second half again, he had a stinker the last day. He turned over 2 crucial possessions in attacking positions and failed to get into the game. It was just one of those days for him. Horan is getting far too much stick for my liking on this forum. That Aidan Henry article (who the f**k Is he anyway??) is the biggest load of bollox I’ve read in a long time.
    In addition, some of the posters on this site in the last few weeks should go over to hoganstand.com if they want to argue and insult everyone, we’ll do fine without them here.

  134. Macs left foot i for one haven’t insulted j.h at any point i think the man has to go he has let us down twice on the biggest stage of all and personally i dont think he’s up to the task. There are alot of people on here saying what a great man he is bringing us to two finals but dont forget we’ve been there before under differant management with lessor teams at our disposal

  135. The world is a pretty unfair place when a wordsmith like john cuffe cant get a few bob off the western for his articles and a blagger like that lad in the connacht telegraph gets ink.

    shocking shocking piece , we should spend less money on the team and pay off our “state of the art” stadium…
    surely the money spent on the team has come back triplefold?
    if our team was unsuccesful there would not be much money going into elverys machale park thats for sure.

    reading that would make you cry if you werent too busy laughing at it.

  136. Alrightman – I think you’ve made your position sufficiently clear on James Horan at this stage and have been given more than enough latitude to do so. The purpose of this site isn’t, however, to provide a platform to those with an out-and-out agenda against specific players or management – it is a site for supporters, after all – so I’d appreciate it if you’d leave it at that.

  137. Ah lads enough of all the negtavity and argueing, some difference this site compare to week leading up to final.We need the air cleared monday nite 1 way or another, james horan clearly made mistakes and if he does,t have certain players on board , then he,ll know himself if the time is up. If he does stay i,d like to see buckely move up to no. 2 instead of nallen and have more of a say on the side line.We are still a good team and with a bit of fresh blood we can get over the line in 2014, it,ll be tough and hopefully this year we will get a tougher test in connacht and have no doubt we will and hopefully the toughest draw there is,like rossies in the hyde in semis and a good ole fashion conn. final against our ole foes the herring chokers in c,bar who are sure to be wounded and hurt afta tha trashing in salthill….Dont think the conn. chapionship done a lot for us this year , was way too handy actually so come on ye magpies, exiles,lovely leitrim, sheepstealers and herring chokers, wer is yer pride, try and stop us for 4 in a row in connacht….. 1 player im very dissapoint with this year is mcglaughlin and [deleted], did , t like his attitude in league either wer he blasts 14 yards frees wide, i dont know why any 1 has to blast and i mean blast a close in free like that….Dont think dillion shoud be starting in any game next year[no disrespect] a squad player ya, but he really is gone past it and his club connections shoud not keep him in the team and too many from that club in panel for my like anyway, just my opinion lads. I still cannot understand or find out why danny kirby from castlebar is not at least on the panel, i had forgotton about him until i seen him make well young boys out of the 2 osheas in breaff-c,bar chapionship match early on in the summer, he has to be on panel as i dont believe thats the best panel, not team, panel i say in mayo, jame horan has to address this or off he goes, i woud like to see him give it the 1 more year, but he has to see thru, the mistakes he made and get every 1 on board as well pulling together, if he cant im afraid theres only 1 thing to do…..Can we win it next year, yes we can remember cork lost 2 all irelands before they beat us in1989 and they had a lot of luck that day as well, so its onwards and upwards for 2014, were still agood team, clear the mayo air james and if you made mistakes admit them, we all make them , everyday and a bit of fresh blood now starting in fbd , injurys cleared up come may, players told your only as good as your las game, no favourites and we,ll give it another good lash starting in connacht and i believe we,ll be there abouts next september……..UP MAYO

  138. Roger Milla, you are 100% correct. I was a regular buyer of the Connaught up to last night when I read the on-line article. Not one cent will leave my pocket now, and one of their senior writers is a neighbour! I am not against Horan being questioned on his performance and decision making process regarding the AI final. I do believe he contributed to our defeat. I am however against the type of journalism that uses all and any issues to hand, e.g. county board financies, debt on McHale Park, players not getting games, etc. etc.,in order to build a case against a manager. These items have nothing to do with Horan, absolutely nothing, yet we have a “journalist” almost making the alleged accusation that the debt and financies are all Horans doing, as well as the defeat.
    What has Henry ever done for Mayo football? Has he kicked 7 points from play in an All Ireland final? Has he won 2 county titles with his club? Has he taken a shambles of an intercounty set-up to 2 consecutive AI finals? No he hasn’t. He has sat on his arse, in his nice press box, and typed away while the players and management bursted their holes to try and win Sam. O.K. It didn’t work this time either, alot of mistakes were made by all concerned, but his answer is to let him pick the manager and team?

  139. Johno – I’ve deleted a bit in the midst of that stream of consciousness of yours, i.e. the insulting bit about Kevin McLoughlin. If you’re going to criticise players, then stick to specifics and keep the abuse out of it.

  140. Surely, if anyone had a concern with the county board financies and the debt on McHale Park it should be Elverys. They are wonderful sponsors in difficult times yet they still help out as much as they can. If they are not voicing concerns about it I cannot see why Henry is so concerned. Hidden agenda going on there, methinks?

  141. Johno, I love and agree with every bit of your post. Mighty.
    I will pray for you at Knock as well!!

  142. You see there will always be people like that writer in the Connacht. Call it lazy analysis or just someone who loves to moan and wont give credit when it’s due.

    I have a relation (Mayo fan) that I have been avoiding since the final. He went to two games all year the semi and final and will slate Horan and the team now. In fairness he is consistent and has slated the team all year and didn’t even give credit when we beat Donegal. He is one of those types who believes we are never good enough in Mayo.

    Well he can fuck right off down to Kerry if he likes. I don’t think I will be bale hold fire if he shoots his mouth off when I see him again. But people like that are not real supporters and are best ignored. I think the article in the Telegraph was trying to get people talking about the reporter which it has.

  143. Pebblesmeller, I love Smileys. I use them all the time texting, they show your emotions, craic, anger, joke etc. I cannot get them on here. You use them. How could I do it? It would be great.
    Then a bollix like me won’t be caught out as often when someone is taking the piss. (Sorry me being cultured, extracting the urine).

  144. Joe Mc,
    Hold down the shift button and hit the : button and then the ) button. They wont come up as smileys when you type them but they will appear on the post. My 11 year old told me that, how sad am I?

  145. @Steve, john griffin says we are not suppose to curse here: “Well he can fuck right off down to Kerry ” you said. It might have been better if you said ” Well he can travel very quickly by bus or train back down to Kerry” That would be more cultured.

  146. Thank you Pebblesmeller. I will try. those kids are IT experts compared to the likes of me. I am fairly IT friendly because of my job but this has me stumped.

    I will also pray for you at Knock. The list is getting longer, I’ll be on my knees all the time. Should have prayed for Mayo. The Lord hasn’t heard from me for years so he might have sat up and taken notice.

  147. Johno mo on tour,you seem to have all the answers,fair play.It must have been tough being at all the training sessions all year,but fair play,I can see it in your analysis-too much of them,not enough of these…very informative .Only pity is you weren’t on the line last Sunday week,but look forward to seeing you bring Sam home next year

  148. Joe Mc I think it will take more than prayers in Knock to save me! The holy water would start boiling at the mention of my name 🙁

  149. My friends, I have worked with journalists for years (I am not one), and with a few exceptions, most of them have huge egos and act like assholes.

  150. Opt2misteek – stop trying to pick fights with others who have made comments. If you disagree with them then it’s perfectly okay to say why but keep the snide swipes out of it.

  151. Please correct me if I am wrong, but people do not have to have played for Mayo to express an opinion on the team or managed Mayo to express an opinion on the management anymore than one has to have been a jounalist to criticise a journalist, a football pundit to cricticise a Sunday Game panellist, a TD to criticise policitians or starred in a Hollywood movie to criticise the performance of a Hollywood actor.

  152. Is there anything to be said for making a league title our first target? 2001 is a long time ago now. I think it would be a great achievement and give us an actual winning platform heading in to the championship. All this talk of peaking too early is alright for certain teams but in theory we shouldn’t have to hit any heights to come out of Connacht so let the early rounds of the championship be our respite.

    Any one else thinking the same?

  153. Absolutely, Stato – not least because after the New York trip it could be close to the end of June before our next championship outing. I think we definitely should target the league and if we do we have to target winning it. I’d also add the U21 championship as another target. We’ve really let this slide in recent years so hopefully with a new manager on board we can have a right run at that too. Look at what regular success at U21 did for Clare’s hurlers.

  154. WJ, I was only thinking about the league a few days ago, will our target be to win it? I don’t think it was last year. Also the Gaa are on about having the league finals (div 1/2?) in New York this year for their 100th centenary. How would that fit in with our plans for next year? League final at the end of April, opening Championship match against New York 1st/2nd weekend in May?

  155. The league of course should be a target, really hope no matter who is in charge that a lot more avenues are explored during the league campaign, can’t see why we can’t try out the likes of Coen, Conor o Shea , Evan Regan by giving them at least three full games.

    How does it work for next year, I’m presuming we will play four away games, Kerry, Tyrone, Kildare and one of the promoted teams replacing the Donegal home game from last year, Derry or Westmeath ?

  156. Looking forward to seeing some of you mupps in New York next spring.
    Better get me season ticket sorted, I may be actually able to use it this side of the pon 😉

  157. mayo.mick – If the league finals are in NY in 2014 and Mayo managed to get to the League Final, that would be the nightmare scenario for the GAA. They couldn’t keep Mayo out there for 2-3 weeks or except them to travel back and forward twice in a short period.

  158. Pebblesmeller, just re-read one of your posts and there was a lot of strong language. I was near to being shocked!!! john griffin mustn’t have read it or you’ll be reprimanded severely and rightly so.

  159. We don’t need to win the league in 2014, it would be nice but not necessary. Concentrating on digging up 2 or 3 lads that can score from 30 yards would be a better idea.
    At this stage Mayo can have only one goal in 2014, Sam. We need to get scorers up front to compliment Cillian o Connor and hopefully Alan freeman, give the potential forwards plenty of league game time. In fact I’d give a few new defenders and a midfielder or 2 a good run in the league too, there could be fellas out there that will burst through and become fixtures.
    And the peripheral lads of the current panel should be given lots of league time or else dropped. The fitness and conditioning built in the last few years will not melt away, it needs to be added to.

  160. @David, I agree with you to a point, such as the league not necessarily been a winning priority, giving a few new lads a good try out, and the ONE goal for 2014, being Sam.
    But the conditioning and fitness of some of these lads will drop and melt away very quickly unless they are disciplined, stick to a controlled diet plus a strict strength and conditioning regime throughout the winter. Gaining back that fitness and conditioning is difficult and there are risks of injury as they try to regain the physical fitness they had previously.

  161. Joe Mc, 🙂 🙂 I don’t know how WJ missed my abusive tirade considering how on-the-ball he is lately! Looking back, I was angry at the build up of the “Horan Out” sentiment and I just cannot see how that will benefit the team at this point in their development. I have even argued with the auld fella about it. Anyway, leave it for now, we will know more Monday night.
    David, I agree with you that winning the league is not a priority. When you look at our away fixtures and when you consider that we must give competitive games to our fringe players and some new forwards, as well as resting some of our established players, we will do well to survive in division one. I think that should be our aim; survival, uncover new forwards and develope the fringe players.

  162. Agreed about the conditioning, our main opponents for summer 2014 are probably training already and getting everything else in place to knock us given a half chance.
    I think jh and co will be aware of that.
    Hopefully he stays in charge, it would be a shame if he left.

  163. I think lads that if we try out loads of new players and go down, it’s not a big deal. If we are a good enough team we will quickly come back up. It’s more important to develop a good team!!!

  164. Sound WJ-just annoyed with generalisation of things,as if a guy like JH would let his heart rule his head..ask Jason Gibbons….but if my posts are deemed as pickin a cyber scrap then I humbly apologise-another man for Joe Mac to pray for!

  165. All those prayers at Knock, they won’t come cheap. I might seem to be an easy mark but deep down there is steel. (That’s a nuisance in wet weather, it get’s rusty).

  166. There needs to be a bit of balance to the league campaign. Going all out to win with our A team would certainly give the team and supporters a much needed boost with a national title, however, would it come at the expense of developing some new players in some key positions that could potentially strengthen our hand come the summer? I strongly believe that going too experimental could easily see us slide to Div 2 which would not be good for general team confidence and morale heading into the championship. I’d be happy with mid-table Div 1 and 2-3 new players making the breakthrough and a couple of the young lads currently on the bench getting the opportunity to pin down starting positions for the championship e.g McHale and Coen.

  167. @45…I agree on Coen, as there is opportunity for him…but where or is there an opportunity for Mchale?

  168. I suppose, at this moment, McHale is used as cover. I would love to see him in a full game, otherwise we can never see his potential. Coming on as a sub all the time doesn’t give him a chance, as so many others.

  169. Mister Mayor – I think he could easily nail down one of the corner back positions and potentially enable Higgins to make a more permanent move to the half forward line? He has the height and physique to also be given some game time at CHB possibly?

  170. Just confirmed in the stats – Shane McHale’s only full games last year were in the FBD draw with the Rossies and the good win in the first round of the National League v Kerry.

    He also started that essential great away win v Cork in the League but was subbed by Chris Barrett.

    Deserves a better run this year, particularly when we saw the likes Keith Higgins being pulled back from his effective role after TC came off at half-time in the AIF.

  171. There could be a balance. I think dropping from division 1 would be a total disaster. But you can definitely balance it. 4 wins from 7 will comfortably get you a semi final spot and, obviously, keep you up. Plenty of room for experimentation and so on.

    We will have to wait until the schedule comes out but surely they will have the league final and our game v New York close together to avoid 2 trips?

    Dream scenario: last week in April beat Dublin in the league final and go on to play New York the following Sunday!!

  172. A half forward line of Higgins, aos and McLaughlin would give most teams a dose of the shkitters. It would be great to see Mchale settling in and owning a jersey like Barrett has, does he have the capability? League 2014, and leave him in there, even in trouble to see how it goes. For all the negative talk of aos in the final, he can fairly toss dubs aside when he’s on the ball. I can’t name anyone else in the whole country than has his power on the ball.
    My ff line next year, freeman and coc along with a bulky type fella that has no trouble winning a ball against a physical defender. Where does Connor o Shea play? Ff line?

  173. Shane McHale might be neeed more permanently if the story of Cafferkey travelling for a year are to be believed.
    David, I agree kinda with your half forward line but I am begining to have my doubts about McLoughlin. As for the full forward line, I would prefer a smaller speedy player with good balance that can take on his man and get inside for goal opprotunities. In O’Connor and Freeman I think we have enough bulk and power there as it is. Especially when you consider that Cillian is still only 21 and has yet to bulk up properly.

  174. Don’t understand the obsession with new forwards for the league. Fairly clear from watching the final that it was the quality of ball ‘going into’ the forwards that scuppered Mayo’s hopes.

    NFL 2014 should be about developing the Freeman and Moran partnership with Doherty as an alternative at full-forward. Dublin used the league to develop an understanding between Mannion and Brogan upfront – that stood to them. How often did Mikey Conroy and Andy Moran play together this year? Not too often and it proved problematic in the final. Conroy seems to play best off a big target man, how can he best link up with Andy?

  175. We still need a couple of new forwards and the League has to be the place to blood them.

  176. Mayo3 g

    Have a look at the semi final and final, we definetly need at least 2 forwards that can actually score from play.
    The best thing to do is get the semi and final tapes and watch them. The semi especially tells a tale.
    View them as though you were in charge and had the call to make.

  177. Gavin used the league to develop a partnership between Brogan and Mannion. A good understanding between the former and Eoghan O’Gara was already there from Gilroy’s tenure and Dublin know how to feed their forwards because they keep a very settled full-forward line during the league.

    The modern league is more about fine-tuning your system, you can blood your youngsters in small cups, challenge games. Throw in a few young lads at the expense of developing a great partnership up front?

  178. Still need forwards that score from play if the defenders are made do their primary job, like in the final last week. All we needed was one forward more that could score from play. No glossing over will fix that issue.

  179. Agree with David there. Find ourselves a couple of forwards who are lethal from open play at taking pints from half chances and clear cut chances. Fellas who will turn up in an All Ireland final as well as at places like Hyde Park and Carrick. Fellas who wont shit themselves and go missing under the white heat of a Croker Final. They must be in the County somewhere. Find them and the elusive All Ireland is well within our grasp. As somebody else stated having a knowledgeable spotter in the Upper Cusack Stand and another one in the Upper Hogan who are wired up to the line below would do no harm either.

  180. ” Fellas who wont shit themselves and go missing under the white heat of a Croker Final”

    That, unfortunately is something Mayo need to get over as a team. If Brogan was a Mayo man and he saw the tide turning against him in the second half he may have given up the ghost like a lot of his team-mates.

    We might see one new corner forward for the league but other than that I hope Horan gives time to the Freeman – Moran partnership. Transforming Moran to a full-forward was a stroke of genius. O’Connor is thriving in his supporting role so no change there.

    Injuries and form mean there needs to be alternatives but it might be something as simple as finding a way for Conroy and Moran to play together, (something they haven’t done) and that will mean games in the league.

    I would see blooding young lads in the full-back line as a bigger priority. Something that will free Higgins to play midfield.

  181. Aha!! The very draw I said we needed 😀

    New York, Ros in the Hyde, possibly Galway in Castlebar should we get through our other games! Who knows what will happen on the other side of the draw though. London will be hoping they can shock Galway, and Sligo waiting in the semi final.

  182. The Rosies in the Hyde and then Galway in McHale park .

    Dust yourselves down boys, roll up them selves and let’s give this another lash.

    Hon Mayo

  183. John Griffin – right, now you’re becoming tiresome: that’s twice in a few hours that I’ve had to pull you up over the same type of infraction of the house rules. Keep it up and you’re heading for the exit.

  184. Joe Mc – not in this instance but maybe it’s best to keep comments directed at the topic under discussion rather than at others who comment and perhaps also pull back on the number of frivolous comments: there are other voices out there too!

  185. Did,t mean the way you see it or picked it up wj, i have never insulted a player in my life, simply has had a bad year in my opinion and i wont take that back…i call it as i see it sorry if thats the way you see it….

  186. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhh optitymisty, did i hit a nerve there some were, well iam so sorry for hurting your feelings but iam entitled to my opinion like you are yours a stor……maybe you could come on board with me as my no. 2 of course and we will deliver sam next year, just have to cut out mistakes made on the line this year………..lol

  187. I’m not going to make a big deal about it Johno but it’s nothing to do with the way I see it or picked it up. You posted a highly insulting remark about a specific player and I pointed out that doing so isn’t on. Whether or not you will or won’t take it back is irrelevant – I deleted it from your comment as I deemed it to be unacceptable. Calling it as you see it is fine as it goes but not if it conflicts with the rules on comments so bear in mind for future reference. Also re your other comment directed at another poster, you’ll have seen that I pulled him up for taking a sarcastic swipe at you so the same goes for your equally sarcastic swipe back at him.

  188. We have all had our say about what happened in the final regarding the non-performance of certain players and the somewhat bizarre calls which were made on the sideline.

    But nobody has mentioned the fans who didn’t get behind the team once they were on the back foot. It was really noticeable at the game, the wall of silence.

    So maybe its not just the players and management who need to learn a thing or two.

  189. Thanks joe, all prayers apprec. and like wise i will do for you next time i,m down at st. deribles well, faulmor out on the far end of the mullet penisula…….

  190. Tom61 – I would disagree with you there. I thought the supporters were fantastic. It was great to see so many Mayo flags on the hill and all around the stadium. The reception that the minors got when they did their lap of honour was something that I’ll never forget. The noise levels were through the roof in the first half of the senior game and while the decibel level may have eased a little at stages in the second half, it was understandable as the frustrating nature of the team’s performance unfolded. Id just wish as many Mayo people would show up to all of our matches – league and championship!

  191. Tom, as much as I hate to say it, I agree, I was in the upper davin, ON MY FEET, trying to raise the mayo crowd when we were down a few after Brogan scored the second,, no luck, the lads next to and in front of me were silent, others looked at me like I was stupid. Can’t understand it. Ppl we’re just sitting there saying it was lost with 10 mins left, and Dublin walking wounded all over!

  192. 45, I agree, when the minors went on their victory lap, it was deafening for sure.I captured it on video and when I play it back, it’s amazing panning all over the stadium, the sea of green and red, even on he Hill, it was deafening. A mention to the Dub supporters here, they were great and really cheered on our lads.
    However many Mayo supporters sat on their hands for the last 7-10 mins when it was there for the taking. My observation was that they were feeding from the players body language as they felt it slipping away.

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