Poll: will we do it on Sunday?


Right, it’s Monday morning, the hurling is out of the way and now our All-Ireland football semi-final against Kerry next Sunday takes centre-stage.

The coverage has already started too. The Irish Independent has pieces on Lee Keegan and Declan O’Sullivan while the Irish Examiner has one on Kerry’s new golden boy James O’Donoghue. There’ll be plenty more in this vein on both teams over the coming days.

The bookies have declared that Sunday’s contest with the Kingdom is pretty much a toss-up – we’re currently on offer at 10/11 while they’re priced at 6/5. It’s fairly clear that this is a clash that could go either way. Time to take the temperature on it, I reckon: which way do you think it’ll go?

Will we beat Kerry on Sunday?

  • Yes (81%, 430 Votes)
  • No (19%, 102 Votes)

Total Voters: 532

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63 thoughts on “Poll: will we do it on Sunday?

  1. Mayo have the better teams, it will be a sweet day to beat the Kerry minors and seniors @HQ!! First and last 10 mins of the game so important for Mayo to control, can’t take foot off the pedal. Here’s to getting both teams in final AGAIN

  2. Its not going to decide the game (jays I hope not anyway) but reckon leeroy might have been better off taking an approach of saying plenty but nothing in that interview. Admitting that an incident should have been a black card when it wasn’t given, in the press after the fact mightn’t be the wisest thing the week of a match (I know this interview was probably done on the press night two weeks ago). Especially when, you never know, you might see that ref again in the final if you get there.
    On top of the chat outta Cork this might be something that the media now pick up on and make it a theme for Sunday, it they do theres a chance we might have refs trying to make a point out of it, as has happened before to us.

  3. Have to agree east cork exile. Less said soonest mended. That said hardly influence ref.
    Kevin O Neill very fair on second captains with all going for Mayo.Hope they’re right.
    Personally I think it is a pity we don’t have James Nallen as a runner on Sunday but perhaps someone else of equal stature will pick up role.

  4. Is Peter Burke, ex-Mayo goalkeeper, not the runner?

    The reason Keegan didn’t get a black card was that he didn’t pull him down, in a downward motion – he struck him. Cynical sure, but not a black card.

    Still though, whatever about what’s said in the media, we can’t go into the match fearing cards from the ref. Do what we have to do.

  5. I wonder how the press will report the game if we win?
    “Mayo beat Kerry team in decline” and the usual shite they associate with us. This time last year we had annihilated the reigning All Ireland champions by 17 points and were being told “ye haven’t been tested”. Dublin beat a division 2, provincial loser by the same amount and they are the greatest team ever, who are unbeatable.
    I can say, with honesty, in 30 years of going to Croke Park supporting Mayo that’s it’s the first time I haven’t been afraid of Kerry and look forward to playing them. We owe them a beating, god knows they’ve given us a few over the years.
    I also think that at 13/2 any supporter who doesn’t have a few bob on Mayo is mad.

  6. Mayo slight favourites against kerry…great to see! We need to forget about this “peaking” for september bullshit, we need to peak sunday and be top of our game, anything less an we will be bet.

  7. Spot on Liam, same here, have watched Kerry beat us too many times. Maybe that’s what makes me so nervous about this game.
    But we have a much better team than Kerry and I think we’ll win in our usual way – by the hardest route possible!

  8. Can’t wait, nervous as feck, but feel we will win. Not sure how the minors will go as I don’t know anything about Kerry. I know our lads are an excellent outfit and am looking forward to seeing them again. Unbelievable progression since the first day in Tuam!

  9. I watched the Minors play Charlestown senior team last week in a challenge game. They are a seriously impressive bunch of young lads. They’re strength and fitness was a sight to behold and they were well able to mix it with the senior lads.
    It was a great game.

  10. Kerry minors are a serious outfit too and this will be a big challenge for our young guns, but I have every faith in them. They are a different breed in terms of confidence and precociousness and as I have said before, play with a maturity and smartness beyond their years.

    I am actually a bit sick with nerves about Sunday. Logically, I am confident, but you can never, ever take anything for granted with that shower (and that is of course a compliment). Look at how they came out against Dublin last year.

    But I fully expect our lads to be facing this game with a practical, no-nonsense attitude. They haven’t come this far, for the third year in a row, to slip up now. Mayo to shade the win, after inducing multiple coronaries all around Croke Park and beyond.

  11. Hopefully when we build a lead in the second half, as in the Cork game, we sit back then and counter attack kerry which we should have done against cork, we cant loose a lead like that again or we will be punished.

  12. According to Enda Gilvary a bug has spread throughout the team and effected a few players lets hope everyone is 100% for Jack O’Connors minor team this Sunday,

  13. While I think we can and should win on Sunday there are plenty of reasons to be concerned. Firstly going on this years form they have been more impressive. They whacked a cork team we beat by a point and they had a similar winning margin over Galway as we had.. Secondly so far we have not been as impressive as last year with one point wins in 2 of our games compared to hammering teams last year. I hope this theory that we are trying to peak at correct time is true but I am not so sure. Next up is the form of our full back line and the high concession rate since start of the league. Kerry have very good forwards and we would be foolish to think o Donaghue is their only threat. Finally they are Kerry and believe themselves the best footballers in Ireland playing against a county they pretty much always reckon they should beat. (see Jack o Connors autobiography for his patronising insulting comments about Mayo) I am sure I could also make a number of positive points as to why Mayo can win but I am always wary of playing Kerry . I ve only seen us beat them once in 1996 and was in Coker in 1981 1997 2004 2005 2006 and 2011 so I have good reason to be concerned. Having said all that I think this is an excellent Mayo team well worthy of our support and who will do their damnedest to beat Kerry ,the only superpower we have not beaten in championship in JH s reign. UP MAYO.

  14. We have the players to win the game next Sun and indeed the A.I but do we have the management to put out our best 15 and introduce the best subs at the right time and not throwing in players with a few mins left to play.Jason Gibbons Barry Moran Alan Freeman Feeney Mikey Sweeney should have been introduced when we started to slip in the second half
    Not all at the same time, the game would have been killed at that stage
    See the difference Freeman and Gibbons made when they were brought on
    We could take a leaf from the Dubs Managers book on how he manages his players in a timely manner.

  15. I have a good feleng about this match…yet this could go either way. We live too dangeroulsy at the back and Kerry are more lethal than any other, bar BAC.
    i think we’ll win, but only after multiple near fatal moments.

  16. Interesting browsing through Kerry GAA forums . Their biggest worry is the effectiveness of our forwards turning players over and then going on to punish teams on the scoreboard. Cant disagree with that. I have being very proud of our ability of turning over oppositions. They also fair the 2 O shea lads who if they can stop them will have the winning of us..Here is where i think Gibbons could have a bid impact same for Barry Moran. They are also aware of our weakness and that is our full back line. I think everyone knows by now we need to stop conceding goals and tighten up in the back. For me the winning of the game will come down to the battle in midfield . We win around the middle of the park we will take them. If we dont then we are fucked! Looking forward to Sunday.

  17. Think we can do it.We have better players but agree decisions re matchups and selection must be correct.
    I would actually go with team that started v Cork except with Barrett in reserve and either Barry or Jason in.I would however introduce Alan Freeman before Half time for whoever is not going well.It should be apparent by then.
    Actually I think choice of first 24 will.be interesting.Will Duffy get in.or Coen or Parsons or D.O .Connor none of whom were listed the last day.

  18. What about Mickie Sweeney and Jason gibbons in for Dillon and Moran what do you make of that.

  19. I would like to see Tom Parsons getting a run, he played for Ireland , a few years ago , did quiet well and he has got stronger, since.He is a fine footballer and should be flying at this stage.He is a great fielder of the ball , is very mobile,
    He should be a good impact sub, and would suit the Kerry style of play.
    Alan Freeman, is a player of enormous potential and if he plays to his potential, at Full Forward,( with Aiden O Shea at centre forward, playing out of his skin), this could be the missing piece of the Jigsaw.
    Looking forward to Sunday.
    UP Mayo.

  20. Think playing Sweeney is foolhardy. Absolutely no experience of Croke Park and light enough. His day will come but not yet imo

  21. Look, the bookies have it just about right based solely on form this year, “So Far”. Mayo have slumbered their way this far and if there is any wakening in them we will know soon enough.

    I don’t feel a bit nervous about the match. I expect Mayo to win and win well. Credit in advance to all the Kerry supporters who make their way to headquarters, knowing full well in their heart of hearts, that they will be beat.

    No sympathy whatsoever on offer from this Mayo man.

    Can’t wait! We owe them and it’s time for Pay Back.

  22. Kerry game plan will include the first 10mins make FB line nervous and try get at least one goal.

    Just seen the weather is forecasting rain and wind for Sunday. This might suit us better as we are more physical in the tackle but I’m not sure.

  23. Since 2011 Kerry will be starting their 3rd semi final in a row, just like Mayo. Fitzmaurice is in his 3rd year as manager. Kerry do not fear Mayo despite of what you read in.the social media. They have tradition behind them. I voted for a narrow Mayo win because I believe this Mayo team can beat any team on their day, if not every team.

  24. Mayo to win by a few points, of course I have no logical reason other than the feeling that this Mayo team are on a mission and will not give in to anyone including the dubs. I hope we win by a whisker and get the dubs in the final, the risk of losing 3 in a row is one we will have to take but i back our guys all the way. Talking to people around ballina in the last week and most are pessimistic, ” Kerry are great and will beat mayo easily” ” I can’t see Dublin losing to anyone so mayo have no business”. Etc, etc, not the type people you would want to have beside you in a battle.
    I think Kerry will try the early attack thing, early goals to knock us off track, so we will need to defend the goal like devils all the way through and play long ball into a ff line of freeman, CoC and maybe aos at some stage, aos isolated at ff and play the right ball to him could be key for us, leave seamie and gibbons in mf and hf line of Kevin, doc and feeney. Even for periods during the game aos would be a nightmare at ff for Kerry, his size and skill are hard to stop.Duffy or Barry Moran could also be nightmares if the right ball was played in to the square and the corner forwards and half forwards stayed out to make space. Maybe that’s too simplistic a way to think but we have been beaten for goals by that method, the simple way is often the best.

    Mayo 3 16
    Kerry 2 17

  25. David it would be nice to see something like that happen, really put Kerry on the back foot.

    I think we will win based on how good we are 5-12 and 2-4 and 13-15 will decide by how much. Galway won some amount of ball against Kerry, defensively they looked poor when ran at, full back came off in second half.

    I’d like to see Doherty tried at 14. Could be a real handful in there with gibbons in at 12 and would be nice to see Freeman back to his best like he was against Tyrone last year.

  26. Balanced view, sweeney scored 1-1 against dublin, so that argument doesn’t stack up, he would be my 2nd choice forward to come on instead of the other two who were on the last day and spent more time on their backside than on their feet. At least with sweeney if a low ball is put in he is the only forward that will get in front of the defender and keep possession.

  27. I see James O’Donoghue is 1/50 to get an all star this year. I wonder has there ever been a player at such short odds before a semi final is played

  28. Agree with you 100% AchillManInDublin, and once in possession, he looks up immediately and if there’s a man in a better scoring position, he passes to them straight away, or if a score is on he takes it! If he got half of the game time that several others have got, the Kerry supporters would be talking about Sweeney. Missed opportunities by JH.
    Also, surely has to start Freeman and Gibbons this Sunday, plus Feeney deserves his chance off the bench too (and not for the last two minutes).
    For some reason, while I’m worried about Caff and Chtis Barrett’s form in the backs, Andy and Alan starting as opposed to being impact subs, and the poor tactical substitutions bhp management, I’m feeling calm about Sunday and Kerry – it’s weird! On Mayo!

  29. Alan and Andy will both start. Come on guys ye know James Horan well enough at this stage I assume?? In any case Dillon was outstanding the last day, 4 from play on sunday would do very nicely again please Alan!!

  30. Cloud9 if Sweeney, Freeman and Gibbons start who would they replace. I presume you would include Cillian K Mac and Doc so I expect you would move Vaughan to half back line and leave out Andy and Alan. That’s leaving out a lot of experience and the last 3 mentioned accounted for 8 points from play v Cork. Personally Id like to see Donie restored to half back line, would include one of Andy or Alan, and would start Freeman IF he has recaptured the form that he showed at times last year and during league. Gibbons I rate highly but I have not seen enough of Sweeney to be convinced that he should start. JH appears to go for players he can trust and those who have experience. The exception was v Ros a game where the new lads struggled and where we were saved by the experienced heads of Andy and to a lesser extent Alan. Against Kerry I doubt if he will take too many risks with starting 15

  31. Was watching the AFL footy show last Thursday night here in oz, Pearse Hanley was on it, really interesting interview, he’s had a phenomenal season with Brisbane and seems very likely to get an All Australian award this year (equivalent of an all star). Anyway it’s obvious his long term plans are to stay with Brisbane and try win something with them (even though they are a poor AFL side in the overall scheme of things). However, he did say that he was going to be overseas in September, and brisbanes season ends on August 30th – IF we beat Kerry I wonder would Horan draft him in to the squad for the final if he was available? I know it sounds ridiculous but Tyrone brought Stephen O Neill in after the AI semi final in 2008 v Wexford and he played nearly the full game in their victory over Kerry that year. Its probably a non runner but Horan has shown he is willing to try such seemingly unlikely moves in the past by getting in touch with gavin Duffy and getting him involved. Normally I think supporters talking about getting Hanley back to play for mayo are deluded as he is obviously committed to Brisbane but if he was in ballaghdereen for the month of sept and we happened to be in an AI final id do everything in my power to get him involved if I was Horan!

  32. While it would be great to see Hanley play for Mayo again it would need to be done in the context of being a proper part of the panel over a season ,and not just bounced into the team for the final if we make it.
    What effect would it have on team morale if lads that have been bursting a gut in training all year are suddenly replaced on semi or final day for a new arrival.
    I’m not saying he wouldn’t be a great addition but I do think it would be risky and send out the wrong message to the panel. I have seen this kind of thing in the GAA before and it’s not something I would welcome.

  33. I think we’re grasping at straws with the Pierce Hanley stuff, besides theres a game to win Sunday to which he has nothing to do with. However, regarding what you say Gerry G, I think, based on the way this group of players have behaved to date, I think if they thought something like bringing Pearce in to an AIF would help us win it, they would buy into it.
    However, even if it wasnt fantasy there are some reality points that mean it couldnt happen:
    1 Tadgh K took a year off from the Syndey Swans to do it, it took him that long to get back into play GAA
    2. Pearce has just signed a new 5 year contract with Brisbane, even lads who are on academy contracts with the likes of Munster are specifically excluded from playing other sports. Brisbane are not going to allow their star asset be risked in some amateur game irrespective of how important we, or even he, might feel it is.
    My biggest concern is that Cian will be straight off down under after the leaving rather than what Pearce might do. Winning all irelands are about inches, and from what I’ve seen of Cian he seems to be cut from the same cloth as Pearce. Not having those two players at our disposal are not inches, they are fecken feet of quality that no county could do without.

  34. The loss of a second Hanley would be gut wrenching. I hate to roll around in these IFs but IF we’d hand PH at centre forward in 2012 and 2013 I think we’d have at least one batch of medals.

  35. Your probably right Gerry. It would certainly have to be done with the agreement of the squad. Let’s not pretend it doesn’t happen regularly though. Its what Tyrone done in 2008, Mickey Harte brought the squad together after they beat Wexford and said: right lads, I want to bring Stephen O Neill back in for the Kerry game, anyone any objections? Apparently Owen mulligan stood up and backed Harte, o Neill came back and they won the AI 3 weeks later. It’s a regular occurrence in club football too, I know of at least 3 mayo clubs in the last year or two that have flown players home from Australia for county finals etc. the reality is that it’s the only way Pearse Hanley will ever wear a mayo jersey, as he is on big money now in the AFL, and there’s no chance of him breaking a contract anytime soon.

  36. I see that former Kerry manager O Connor says that the Mayo fear factor of Kerry give them a mental advantage—it would be lovely to make him eat his words.

  37. I think kerry will beat us sunday, hate to say it but have a bad feeling last few days, kerry by 2.

  38. Just watched the game again last night against Cork. 3rd viewing. Paid particular attention to Andy Moran’s and Ger Caff’s performances.

    In Andy’s 46 mins on the pitch he gave the ball away twice (It was reported as 5 in the first half in the Mayo News. Factually incorrect).

    Of 9 50-50 balls played to him he won 7. 2 of those led to frees. That’s 78% success.

    Of 12 attempted passes, he completed 11 of them. 4 of those directly led to points. 92% success.

    Of 2 shots, he scored 2. 100% success.

    In the 18 minutes after Andy was withdrawn, we scored 1 point.

    As a footnote, Cillian kicked 4 wides in the first half. God help Andy if he kicked 4 wides.

    He slipped 3 times, one of which ended up being a free.

    Ger Cafferky.

    Colm O’Rourke at half time: “Hurley and O’Neill are absolutely making hay against Ger Cafferky”

    In the full first half, Ger’s man scored a total of 0 points. Chris Barrett was marking Hurley early on, who scored 3 points. Then they switched. Hurley didn’t score off Caffarkey once after that. O’Neill then scored 2 off Chris, but scored none off Ger. Local papers reported that Ger was “jittery and not in his usual form”. On close inspection of the first half yesterday, he did absolutely nothing wrong for the whole first half.

    Ger won 5 possessions in the 75 minutes of play.

    He conceded 2 points. One was a free he had given away in front of the posts. You may remember the “advantage” decision after 54 minutes.

    The second was a free right at the death where he kicked the ball out of play while Hurley (I think) went to pick it up. Possibly harsh.

    The man he was marking at any stage during the game did not score a single point from play. Not bad for a man who is jittery.

    As a side note, that was great fun last night and I intend to do more of it!

    If we don’t start Andy, we could be in trouble after 45 minutes. He contributes way to much during the game. His game intelligence, vision and accuracy is just outstanding.

  39. Very hard to argue with those stats MayoMark. It would make you wonder where the official stats come from and how they are reached.

  40. We really need to work on giving away goals….

    2011: semi v Kerry a goal from Cillian brings us right back into it but not long after the Gooch fires one in for the Kerry at the other end

    2012: Do I even need to say it?
    2013:Going well until a flick by Brogan puts Dublin in Control and again when we go level from Andy’s goal back come Dublin and walk in another easy goal

    2014: v Cork the last day, stupid easy goals let in and one unforgivable just seconds after Aidan’s goal.

    Tighten up at the back and we will beat Kerry. Let them in for goals at critical times as we have been doing for a few years in big games and we are dust. If we can do that then I believe we will win.

  41. Also it needs to be noted that Cork were absolutely filthy. Some scandalous takcles that unbelievably went unpunished. The two best decisions have to be:

    Cork getting advantage after Kevin McGloughlin gets and elbow in the head and a hand in the face

    Cork getting a free out after the keeper catches the ball, drives his his straight into Cillian’s chest and barges through him.

    Absolutely baffling!

  42. Agree with you on the goals issue Steve. I think key to stopping Kerry getting goal chances on Sunday is to try and take Declan O’Sullivan out of the game. He is generally the one delivering those pinpoint passes into Geaney and O’Donoghue.

    That means conclusively winning the battle out around the middle third. Traditionally this is where Kerry have always tried to dominate as well with (in previous years) Galvin and Tomás O’Sé winning a lot of breaking ball. We have improved a lot in this area in recent years and I hope that trend continues on Sunday.

    As to making changes in the forwards I think that Horan will stick with the forwards line up he had the last day. But after 50 minutes when Andy and Alan get tired he should look to Freeman and Feeney to come in. Freeman into full forward and move Doc into the corner closer to goal where he could do more damage. And bring Feeney coming onto the wing to act as a stopper and a ball winner with more physicality in the middle third.

  43. Mark – you can add to that list the punch by O’Driscoll into Boyler’s windpipe right in front of the linesman who had to have seen the strike clearly. That’s a straight red all day long but he got away with a yellow for it.

    Great analysis, by the way, from your third viewing of the game.

  44. Point taken WJ on it taking 3 viewings to get a right fist of things but there is no excuse for the likes of O’Rouke who is paid to watch the match not noticing the fact that he the player he is publicly lambasting is not even marking the player doing the damage. It proves once again that most of these pundits dont actually analyse anything, are robbing a living and consistently fall back on tired cliches and things they or somebody else might have noticed previously to do their “jobs”.
    We dont mind criticism, just do your job and make sure its accurate.

  45. Good stats Mark and it points out what were missing in one game JH probarley sees in training every time and thats why he picks who he pickk. He will start Andy and Dillion and he wont change to much from the last day, but he will look at man marking some of the Kerry forwards, if he doesnt were dead

  46. Moran and Dillon will start if fit. Andy’s contribution this year has been under valued by many. Dillon deserves to start on form too, four crucial points from play the last day out.

  47. Can’t see us beating kerry, our full back line will be found out big time.look what o Neil and Hurley did to us. God only knows what o donoghue, Geaney, o brien and the 2 o sullivans will do to us. They ran through Dublin last year in semi final only for legs to go in the older fellows, them fellows are not there any more. Barrett and Cafferky are in for a long day as Kerry could easily score 5 or 6 goals in the first half with those forwards.

  48. 5 or 6 goals in the 1st half for Kerry . Hope we are playing downhill with a hurricane wind at our backs in the 2nd half if that’s the case .
    I think we are in for another v close game . Stoping Declan o’sullivan will be key – think lee will be given the job to control the Kerry playmaker .

  49. I’m afraid Willie Joe, we haven’t met anything yet like the standard of forward line we will come up against on Sunday.they were in 3rd gear against cork and 4th gear against Galway.they never peak till the semi final. We just haven’t got that forward power and that’s where the game will be won. O donohue and Geaney will score more than our 6 forwards put together, hope I’m wrong, not going to go on Sunday as could not face another drubbing from them.

  50. Every championship match this year (bar New York) we’ve been told we’re coming up against serious forwards. Ros had apparently four of the best in Connacht, Galway were supposedly weighed down with attacking talent, as were Cork. So far, we’ve done okay against all such reputedly top-class talent and I’d be confident enough we’ll do the same on Sunday. Suggesting we’ll concede 5 or 6 goals the next day is more than a bit ludicrous, to be honest.

  51. Good man WJ, everybody talking down Mayo, I feel a good performance will be coming on Sunday, Mayo by a minimum of 3 points, and thats not being cocky, just been realistic. Will Sunday ever hurry up. Maigh Eo Abu.

  52. Is it a 5 speed gear box or a 6 speed gear box that Kerry have J Moore?
    Tis handy for ya knowing in advance what kind of massacre it will be, save you the journey on Sunday

  53. I’d like to think that J Moore is toeing the party line with playing us down, all tongue in cheek like. But unfortunately I fear not.

    I won’t bother watching the 1st half so, I’ll get there for the 2nd and the mother of all comebacks.

    Delighted you’re not going to the match anyway…

  54. I would certainly prefer to meet J Moore after the game, rather than before it.
    If he does turn up at the final , I hope he has his dinner first , as a cannibal is a dangerous thing in such confined spaces.

  55. The only article really annoying me is Brehony’s, total and utter crap. Past history between the teams is completely irrelevant. Tompkins, probably telling the truth as he sees it, maybe adding small bit of controversy as that sells. Don’t agree with him though. Our championship record very good. We just came up against other best teams in country on final day. My only complaint is missed a few scores after half time in 2012 final but most games even finals have some imperfect spells. Donegal assigned their best defender on Dillon. 2013 Dubs defence was underrated especially James Mccarthy. Andy has shown loads of leadership as has COC, O Sheas, Kevin Mc, half backs, K Higgins & more, Dillon showed it last day & many times too. Just a case of keep improving every game this year & hope that’s good enough. The other 3 teams left are the cream like ourselves. It’s about inches. Impossible to concentrate fully for 70, just minimise mistakes. The team / panel has improved this year, the pack trying hard to close the gap, just need to hit top gear from now on which is not easy with superior opposition but can be done.

  56. Well said, we must just be careful as everyone says in first 15 minutes as their forwards are lethal given space. What mustn’t happen is them to get 2 or 3 goals in opening minutes, then we would be in big trouble.

  57. Have to say I fear for mayo on sunday. Their inabilty to keep a big lead as shown this year against dublin, Derry and cork will cost them against kerry. Cant remember a single game where they maintained concentration and composure for 70 mins. Kerrys bench of the 2 o sullivans, sheehan and Donaghy v conroy and varley?… worrying. Mayo seem to have big problems in the 2nd halves of games. On plus side lee keegan backk to his awesome best. Mayos defence still great in spite of recent dodgy full back line, but nobody knows if mayos forwards will turn up. Mayo have looked dodgy in every game this year. Please God they will have sorted themselves out and step up on Sunday

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