Quick round-up

Up Mayo sheep

Photo: @Nora_McNeely (via Twitter)

Morning all on what, despite all those apocalyptic weather warnings, appears no more than a nice bright ‘n’ breezy morning here in the capital. I’ve a truckload of work ahead of me today, with a deadline to get something out the door by the end of it, so this one needs to be a quick one.

There doesn’t appear to be too much to report on, in any case, with Rory Gallagher’s howling at the moon yesterday only getting a brief mention in this morning’s nationals. In the Irish Examiner, County Board PRO Aiden McLoughlin provides a riposte to the Donegal assistant manager’s wild claims about “collusion” between ourselves and Monaghan. In doing so, Aiden wisely avoids adding further fuel to the fire and instead deftly but firmly rejects Gallagher’s loony assertions. Let that be the end of this nonsense now.

Aside from that, there’s just some standard stuff on the team announcements and a piece in the Irish Independent with Barry Moran which has obviously been simmering in the pot since the press event on Sunday night. ┬áMartin Carney, once again a man with a foot in both camps, plumps for us in his match preview on RTE.ie. The Donegal GAA blog, samforthehills, also shies away from predicting a win for them in its match preview.

There’s some audio as well that you might be interested in. If you’ve already had a listen to the Mayo News podcast – and, come on now, you’ve no excuse if you haven’t – then the Donegal GAA podcast might serve as a nice contrast while the lads on Second Captains have a football special featuring David Brady, Oisin McConville and others.

See, I said it’d be a quick one. Pity the working day facing me isn’t set to be the same.

33 thoughts on “Quick round-up

  1. Sensible article by Barry Moran.Lot of talk around here that j.doherty will start as he is flying in training.who knows?

  2. Lots of reason to be optimistic for week-end.

    Of course it wont be easy but the omens are good.
    Horan has charges ready to go and unlike others I think Mayo need not fear starting badly. Just keep at it and let nothing dismay you is my belief. I refuse to believe just because Donegal might get first few scores we cant win. Nonsense. THis team just needs to persevere and chances will come.

    Would be great of course to start well and we would all take it if we did but one way or the other we have to win.

    Mantra has to be no excuses. See you all in CRoker!

  3. When you arrive in Croke Park in August/September there are three golden rules.
    1. Never give yourself any self inflicted wounds. Minimise Mistakes. Cool Heads/Discipline. No Sendings Off. Good Decision Making. Make the opposition work for their scores. No Presents. No self inflicted finishing the game with 14 men as against London when our subs were used up.
    2. Goals. We need to score more of these than we concede.
    3. Good Game Management. This involves the correct selection & match-ups to start with, timely substitutions when required. Consideration to replacing players on yellow cards to reduce the dangers of a sending off.
    If we get these basics right we WILL beat Donegal.
    If we get them wrong then our season will end & we’ll all be back here on Monday morning crying into the tealeaves.
    The outpourings from Donegal management this week have nothing to do with us … they are designed to further motivate the Donegal team.
    We need a nice steady measured start, a gradual build up of power & then we need to wash over them in the second half.
    I have a good feeling about this one.

  4. Very interesting reading the samforthehills blog. A very honest assessment of where Donegal are. Lots of problem’s and doubts. Are we not better off than that?
    I have no doubts about sun. I think in every players heart was a wish to meet Donegal again. Now that is here. The key is to score 14/15 pts. That should be enough.
    Is it Sunday yet?

  5. interesting reading samforthehills, I think he has it right in saying the hunger for victory is not there at 2012 levels. They won it in 2012, simple as that, I cannot see how they would be as driven to win this year again.

  6. samforthehills seems to be very fair in what its saying about both teams, i dont think Donegal will win the all ireland but i hope there is no last kick in them this Sunday, and if there is i hope we have enough to overcome it.

  7. On the train home will listen in when i get back. Do the Co Board not state how many they get/sell etc? I was wished all the best of luck by a mate in work – a meathman! Cannot wait for Sunday

  8. Mayo should be the hungrier team ( they are playing a team with all Ireland medals).I agree with Joey’s golden rules and with his views on the outpourings from the Donegal camp. Wishing James and the team every good wish on Sunday

  9. Id imagine the county board would say how many tickets they were allocated.but when i picked up my ticket at machale park the fella just said they received a sizeable number.

  10. Tickets sorted, cant wait for the weekend now. Going to try driving up to Maynooth and getting the train in from Drumcondra, anyone know if this is a good way to travel in??

    On the match itself, in as confused as hell over it, maybe its all the media coverage about what was being said during the week etc, but I wouldn’t be as confident as some on a victory. In no particular order this is where I see the game being won and lost:
    1. We need a complete performance out of our lads for the 70 mins, with a particular focus on the first 10/15 mins. If lessons are to be learnt from last year, then we cannot let the Donegal half backs/midfield have time to deliver the ball into their forwards. Pressure must be put on Karl Lacey especially. Lets physically dominate him and see could he be a weak link on Sunday.
    2. Neil Gallagher/Rory Kavanagh must not be able to dominate the middle, and we have to be fully clued in to the breaks around the middle.
    3. Our full-forward line simply have to produce the goods against what im guessing will be a packed Donegal defence. To do this the ball must be quick and accurate. We must also have runners hitting the space at pace and speed for both passes and knockdowns. 18 wides are simply not an option either.
    4. It goes without saying that the 3 amigos up top for Donegal have got to be marked and restricted. This includes disciplined tackling as we have all seen how easy some of these guys go down.
    5. On the line we need to be prepared for Michael Murphy drifting out for ball and make changes accordingly if need be. Also if men are not doing their thing or have emptied the tank, they need to be taken off, end of.

    Christ, I dont ask for much do I? Safe travelling to all.
    See ye in Croker. Maigheo ABU!!

  11. Peewee09 On Travelling up I did the Manooth thing only once there are 2 problems parking at Manooth is tight and you risk being clamped in the shopping centre
    Trains to anf from Drumcondra are not along every minute so we were late getting back after game
    Driving up early tomorrow and park in drumcondra I think its easier but thats just my opinion!
    On the game; we supporters often make the mistake going into a rematch of thinking and planning for a repeat of what happened last time. Seldom pans out, and it probably wont tomorrow
    While Im hopeful of us grinding out a win I worry about our forwards getting scores out of Donegal’s Mauling backs, so its important that our midfiels ,half backs- Keith included- get into scoring mode.
    Lets get at them- but be nice to the Donegal people they will be supporting us in the semi.

  12. And with all the faux negativity coming out of the Donegal camp, they will be the best supported team, they will bring more colour and they will make more noise. Mayo support never been the same since the nineties, blame it on whatever but that is the fact. From what i’m gathering they haven’t enough tickets in Donegal, tis frightening to think how pale we will look in comparison.

  13. In fairness was over 20k at the London game would Donegal bring that crowd if playing London? remember Donegal didn’t fill Carrick last weekend against Laois.

  14. PeeWee09 – That’s the best way to go train in and out, special extra trains out after the game too. I am from Maynooth. Be careful parking in any estates near the station i.e. Silken Vale you will get clamped in there. There is a huge carpark in the Dunboyne train station out beside the M3 either but is more “out of the way”

  15. You would think it was an all Ireland final with the amount of Donegal jerseys round dorsert st and that area. I’ll give them something, amazing supporters.

    Lets hope we can do it on the pitch though. Hon Mayo.

  16. Not this time, JPM, I’m planning an early night and hoping to do an early cycle Sunday morning. If we’re still in it at the semi-final stage we’ll should definitely have a gathering the night before.

  17. We have never lost a championship match we have been favourites for under Horan. Hopefully that run will continue. No early goals conceded

  18. After listening to the Donegal podcast thing it seems that Donegal are sounding like the Mayo of old. The Donegal pod people have concided that despite the fact their county are the current All Ireland Champs they are up against it on Sunday. Mayo are the IT. Listen now, with no disrespect to Donegals achievement. Mayo have not come out of nowhere. This team have been building since the OMahoney vote catching years, to the now serious commitment that we are so priviliged to have under Horan and his team. Mayo calls time, On Time.

    Mayo have paid thier dues. The steam roller moves slow, but she moves…

    “Come On Mayo!!!”

  19. Would it best correct to say that the last time we were as confident of winning going into a big game was the 97 final?

  20. with all due respect JoeRuane I do not think John OMahoney should be given any kind of credit in the building of this team.All the kudos should go to James Horan and his back room team for the superb job they have done in bringing Mayo back into one of the top contenders for all ireland honors

  21. I agree, Tom B. I have tried to blank 2010 out of my memory for the last few years. There is no comparison between this team under James Horan and this team under John O’Mahony. Even his most successful year, 2009, showed a total lack of leadership in the team and a capitulation against a poor Meath team. O’Mahony was a fantastic manager for Mayo back in the 1980s, Leitrim and Galway in the 90s and 00s. But not for Mayo in the 00s. Horan and co. have done a fantastic job so far – now the hope is that they can go the final step.

  22. Firstly, Donegal love Croke Park, it holds sweet memories for them and they relish its space as well as the cauldron of noise & emotion generated by their loyal fans, if they can resurrect a performance anywhere, it will be there. They are wounded now and lots of questions being asked about players and setup, that makes them extremely dangerous. Call me over cautious but I would hate to think that we are reading too much into neutrals calling it for Mayo.

    Michael Murphy is due a performance, Colm McFadden I’m sure will not disappoint but I believe that the baton has been passed to young McBrearty, who if not supervised closely could inflict the ultimate pain on us. Man marking is the order of the day, I know how badly we need this but we really have to keep the feet on the ground.

    Mayo supporters are loyal, obsessed and passionate to a man, but by our very nature we are not loud or at least not as loud as Donegal. We need to make sure that our men know we are there, even when the chips are down.

    As peewee09 mentioned earlier the breaking ball at midfield, if not policed properly by us could give them the ammunition the need to launch those fierce onslaughts that can tear any team apart.

    On a more positive note, Donegal lack a depth on the bench which we can exploit by intelligent use of our own subs. Big games are required by our big guns, clinical finishing and 70 min of full power. No one can question how much we want this.

    In any case let the games commence and may the west be awake!

  23. Not sure about when people were as confident about winning.
    Meath a couple of years ago springs to mind and that was a disaster. But that was a different mentality I believe. Our team are in a lot better place now, experience wise and both mentally and physically. I think our guys know they can handle the heavy stuff that will be dished out by any team as well as the mind games
    It’s more so about getting the concentration right themselves for the day now and taking it one game at a time. Hopefully they will see it through now in this one. All of Mayo are behind them.

  24. As we approach the big game on Sunday. It will be important not to repeat last years mistakes.
    We must get off to a good start and have no lapses like we have had in previous big games.
    The first 15 to 20 minutes will be vital. We must deploy a sweeper for the first half to help
    out in defense. I would give this task to K. McLaughlin. I would bring out C. O’ Connor to the center
    forward position, and leave Moran and Freeman in the full forward line.If we can hold our own in
    the first half and go into the break with a few points lead, this will bode well for us. Donegal is a very
    hard team to beat if they get a lead on you, especially in the first half. In fact they win 90% of their games when leading going into the second half . Our forwards must do a better job at taking their scores,
    because of their size, it will be very hard to penetrate the Donegal blanket defense. However; if our
    forwards can take scores from 40 yards or more, and the midfielders and half backs contribute to the
    scoreboard, we will be able to circumvent the blanket defense and go on and win the game. If the
    forwards are not doing well, and especially the full forward line, then i would place Barry Moran
    into the full forward position to add some physicality to the area. If things are not going well for us in
    the first half, lets not wait too long to make the necessary adjustments as needed. Best of luck Mayo.

  25. Best of luck to Mayo on Sunday,its very important that we stay focused 70 minutes a long time.We have the horses!

  26. Jaysus Cool Hand Luke – hope the Ram doesn’t catch them; they will be traumatised.

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