Semi-final build-up stuff

Kerry flag

It’s Wednesday and while I know many of you can’t wait ’till the action gets underway on Sunday, we’re already getting kinda wistful that our week on hols down here in the Kingdom is rattling by far too quickly. A full month of this outrageously gorgeous scenery wouldn’t, I reckon, be too long. Instead, we’ll be in the convoy with the Kerry match traffic heading for the capital on Saturday.

The build-up to Sunday is now on in earnest so here’s a flavour of what’s out there on the match at this point. A good place to start, as always, is the Mayo News podcast, where Rob and the lads are joined by Pat Holmes and Shane McGrath of the Irish Daily Mail to preview the big match.

Mike Finnerty has a piece in the Mayo News where he says that Jason Gibbons and Alan Freeman are both “pushing hard for inclusion” in the starting fifteen for Sunday. If they both do line out, then this would surely see Jason start at midfield with Donal Vaughan switching to his more usual wing-back position and Tom Cunniffe reverting to the corner in place of Chris Barrett. Alan would be a straight swap for Andy Moran at full-forward.

I haven’t seen confirmation yet about when we’re due to name the team for Sunday but I assume it’ll be some time tomorrow. Kerry are due to name their side at 8.30pm tomorrow – at least that’s what it says in this week’s Kerryman newspaper, which I bought in Dingle earlier on.

There’s a fair bit of stuff in the dailies and online about the match, including this lot:

In the Irish Independent Colm Keys has a piece on Donie Buckley and Cian O’Neill, while the same writer has some yerra stuff from Eamonn Fitzmaurice about how we’re the most physical team out there.  There’s more yerra in yesterday’s Indo too, with Jack O’Connor saying that their forwards are better than ours while yesterday’s edition also has a piece with our S&C guru Ed Coughlan.

The Irish Times, meanwhile, has Darragh Ó Sé’s blokey column in which, after much huffing and puffing, he plumps for his native county to do the business on Sunday. Well, he was hardly going to say anything else, now was he?  The same paper also has an interview with  former manager John Maughan and with Eamonn Fitzmaurice.

The Irish Examiner has that well-publicised piece with Larry Tompkins who takes a right pop at us, though why his opinion is in any way relevant ahead of this weekend is beyond me, I have to admit.  The Score and RTÉ also have that Tompkins story, by the way.

There’s more out there but there’s also alcohol to be drunk so I think I’ll leave it there for now. More nice scenery but also some team news to come tomorrow.

15 thoughts on “Semi-final build-up stuff

  1. Reading between the lines in the mayonews, Gibson and Freeman must have started for the A’s last weekend.

    That’s prob our best team as Dillion with 4 almost 5 points had to start. Barratt and Moran on the bench.

    If Gibons plays to his league form and the rest of the middle 8 play to current form, I don’t think we have ever gone into a game with such talent and threat in this area of the pitch. We truly are blessed at the moment and there’s no way our greatest ever middle 8 will allow us lose this game.

    Roll on Sunday

  2. Depends on what row your tickets are for justoutsideballagh. If you are in double letters there is a good chance there is cover but that depends on wind/rain direction . What row is your tkt for

  3. Wet day forecast so you need to be behind EE in Cusack., Id say Davin is something similar. Would be surprised if Freeman started ahead of Andy. Don’t know which team the wet day will suit. Possibly us because according to the experts we are ” the most physical team” around. The again maybe it will suit Kerry as they have such “pure footballers” who surely wouldn’t be hampered by something as insignificant as a drop of rain.

  4. Better than Martin Breheny’s usual copy and paste number, that’s for sure. Does he just regurgitate the same piece every time we reach this stage?

  5. Hard to argue with a lot of what Tompkins said, loath as I am to say it. A bit incendiary maybe, but a lot of valid points. Unfortunately.
    I’d be astonished if Moran doesn’t start on Sunday. To me, he’s crucial to the Mayo team, for ball winning purposes alone. Mayo haven’t really played with a full forward this year, unlike last year where Freeman excelled in the role. Freeman looks void of confidence again, his effort at a point the last day summed that up. There is a role for him but not in Andy’s stead.
    I think you’ll only miss Andy when he’s not there. Without him, there is a lot of pressure on Cillian to win ball and score. To me, Andy looked like he was getting back to his ball winning best the last day, particularly in the second half. His ability to get out in front of his man and win ball is crucial to Mayo – especially at the start of big games to get them settled. He is more mobile than Alan, particularly when playing in the corner, and if he’s not motoring well, one would fear for Mayo.
    On another note, I’m astonished that Eamonn Fitzmaurice has allowed James O’Donoghue free reign in the media this week. He seems to be on every newspaper and every website. His tweets are being broadcast to a wide audience, such as tweets to Rihanna and about Suarez. Now it mightn’t make any difference to him, he seems a very confident young man, but i just found it surprising to allow him be given so much coverage. A lot of time, it can backfire on young players.
    Time will tell, I guess.

  6. Horans Brigade, how can you say Freeman is void of confidence? We havent seen him since June bar 5 minutes against Cork where he had two good plays.

    Hearing allright that the rumour machines reckons that Freeman and Gibbons will start, Cuniffe back to the corner, Barret to the bench and Vaughan back to wing back to act as some sort of sweeper

  7. I’m referring to the match against Cork where he got a chance and weakly hoisted it wide. Just a snapshot, I know, but it was more reminiscent of his form of 2012 than last year.
    Don’t get me wrong, a confident Freeman is well worth his place, but I can’t see Horan leaving a fit and confident Freeman who was playing well off the team.
    it’ll be interesting to see whether those rumours are well founded, or off the back of that newspaper article yesterday.

  8. Long build up to this, as nervous as your best cliche.
    Impressed by JOD, when he came on and scored against us in 12. He probably will not need the guidance like that from DOS after any more. Them is cute boys. Check it out at 7mins.
    Hope we play our game!

  9. I have an awful feeling that Kerry will trounce us, that bench would beat most teams in Ireland , we can’t compete with them subs, and I was so looking forward to Sunday

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