Sunday match reports

Do I have to do this – really?

On mornings like this one, I do wonder what’s the point. Habit, I guess.

So, then, here goes – here’s the grisly online coverage of our penalty shootout Championship exit last night.

Locals: Mayo News, Connaught Telegraph, Western People, Derry Journal, Derry Now.

Nationals: Irish Examiner, Irish Times, Irish Independent, Irish Mirror, Irish Sun, Irish News, Sunday Times,

Others: GAA, RTÉ, BBC, The 42.

Photos: Inpho, Sportsfile.

Videos: RTÉ Sunday Game (penalties, post-match quotes, analysis), Mayo GAA (Kevin McStay post-game on GAA GO).

Stats: Gaelic Statsman, Stephen O’Meara.

Our Final Whistle pod is, as ever, worth a listen. Recorded at the ground just after the penalty shootout concluded, Rob and I are joined by Colm Boyle and Edwin McGreal to provide in-the-moment post-game analysis. It’s available on Patreon – here.

The MOTM poll remains open, with Aidan O’Shea out in front once again in the voting. If you haven’t had your say (in what’s the final MOTM poll of the year here on the blog) then please take the time to do so.

I’m heading to Longford a bit later on where the Minors take on Armagh in the All-Ireland semi-final. Derry beat Kerry in the other semi-final yesterday so our young guns will be facing another clash with the Oak Leafers in the U17 final should they win today. The very best of luck to them.

We’ll have a Final Whistle pod from Pearse Park this evening and I’ll have a match report up here as well. The wheels keep turning, as they do, as they must. Up Mayo.

150 thoughts on “Sunday match reports

  1. In fairness to Kevin, he did say when he initially took up the post that he’d review progress after year 2 and if he wasn’t improving Mayo football he’d likely step-down. I’m paraphrasing, but I’m sure this is what he said.
    We’re just after losing in the prelims, no improvement on last year, either in style of play or progress through the championship, so it’ll be interesting to see what happens next.
    I wouldn’t be overly critical. I think he played the best players and overall tried to play to their strengths. Unfortunately we’re in a lull at the moment. The loss of too many generational players.

  2. I dont think Kevin is the problem I genuinely think theres too many chiefs in the background. Get rid of them and let McStay manage solo and play like Mayo did in the league in his first year in charge not the lateral nonsense we play

  3. @Liberal role in the tie: “… no improvement on last year, either in style of play…”

    I don’t necessarily disagree with your view, but to play Devil’s Advocate for a moment…

    3 Championship games we didn’t win. A 1 point defeat to Galway, a draw against Dublin & a draw against Derry. All games where we didn’t concede a goal. Games all played without Paddy, without James, without a fully fit Diarmuid & with Eoghan managing to see more than a half of football in only 1 of those.

    There’s an objective case there for some progress there, if someone wished to make it.

    Throw in that they’re all games that looked won, were taken away with late collapses, had a less aesthetically pleasing than we’d have been used to play style & ones where we often went long periods without creating chances never mind converting scores… and you’d also make an objective case for some regression there too.

    Mayo GAA illustrating the pluralism of truth in a nutshell.

  4. I said it on previous thread, Rochford has not been the manager this year or last. Why is he taking so much criticism. There was 3 changes to backroom team from last year’s group that were originally given the post.

  5. Very good points TsuDhoNim
    We have improved big time in defense. Need a two left sided free takers (one for cover when first choice is injured)I don’t think Orme is the answer. V the Blanket defense – run at the defenders and draw the fouls . Aiden and Cillian have another two to three years in them. Cillian is recovering from injury and will regain his sharpness

  6. Liberal & Gizm

    I agree with ye but there is no way that Kevin will step down and I don’t blame him in that regard. But he has to answer to a county board who are led by sheer incompetence. Weather it be manager selection, fundraising, cost structures (debt) club fixtures etc, it’s just so poorly set up and the buck stops with the chairman.

    I understand Rochford isn’t the manager but no way Kevin McStay, an inside forward in his day could stand that style of play. It goes to show that in Rochfords first stent as manager, it was McEntee who was the brains there. Even now look how he’s developing Sligo.

    Ironically as Gizm said, it’s a very different looking mgmt team to the one that got the job only 2 years ago. I suppose the upside is we are playing a lovely “Corofin” style of play.

  7. Gizmobobs Rochford gets so much criticism because or attacking play looks so similar to Donegal when Rochford was there. Michael Murphy described our attack yesterday as laborious, quite ponderous and clueless

  8. Very best of luck to the minors later today. I think a win could give the county a much needed lift.

  9. Lucero, that I understand. But who makes the decision to adopt the style of play suggested by the coach? Also Rochford isn’t the forwards coach. Manager brought in a new man for that role this year.

  10. By the by –

    I was sick with disappointment in the aftermath of the shootout yesterday. We had our chances and just weren’t composed enough to finish the job. I found the extra time and pens a bit surreal as I was already in the ‘we’re goosed now next weekend anyway’ space given the ridiculous turnaround.

    As Kevin himself accepted straight after the game, the end game slide has been a pattern all season. We’ve been very competitive all year and generally put ourselves in good positions to see it out. Unfortunately, for some reason we’ve repeatedly got it all wrong. These are small margins but they make all the difference.

    Not much else you can say at this point and it’s probably too soon as the wounds are pretty raw at the moment.

  11. We are all hurting and i prefer to wait for the postmortem.Two wins and two draws from All Ireland Series.Is it enough to suggest we are improving is the big question.Lastly for now a special thanks to Aido for all his service to date and without a doubt for me our most important player and consistent player in the last month.

  12. Thanks WJ for your excellent work once again. Not pretty reading for us but we are well used to that. Like TsuDhoNim , I also think we have improved a lot on last year. Roscommon beat us fair and square last year, Cork also got the better of us and Dublin whacked us. This year we lost one game by a single point, drew with Dublin and 6 days later drew with Derry. It is easy to say we have gone back as we did not qualify for quarter finals this year but our championship displays were better. No goals conceded in Connacht championship v Ross or Galway, no goal conceded v Derry or Dublin. so defensively that’s better. Our forwards have been better this year (possible exception yesterday) also with Aido and Ryan very good and Tommy in patches seeming more like himself. Also Jordan was immense in extra time yesterday. This team is not as good as the 2012- 2017 team but they couldn’t get over the line either. The attitude of the team is top class and it takes a number of years playing senior inter county to develop top level consistency but some of the younger lads have done very well this year while Aido and Ryan have had great years. Remember missing Paddy was huge and Diarmaid was also sorely hampered by injuries also. I know other counties have also suffered injury set backs, Derry included and also Galway have been hit hard. Our biggest problem is to close out games having led in injury time in 3 of them. When we were at our best 2012- 2017 we struggled to get in front coming down the home straight and were always playing catch up v Dublin

  13. Fair comments TsuDho but I’d be fully sure that McStay’s own bar and measure of success and progress is far higher than that, i.e., to a least reach an All Ireland final. I’d be shocked if he didn’t consider this year as a real failure. Everything else is window dressing really.

  14. Our basic skills were a big let down this year,hand passing was all over the many times when lads are breaking the lines only for the ball to be pasted up over the head or down at their feet.
    It is no wonder the ball can’t be fisted over the bar.
    They need to find a tall mobile work horse of a midfielder that can actually pull a ball out the clouds and lay it off quick.
    Christ it’s going to be a long winter.
    Hopefully the minors can lift the spirits going forward
    Best of luck lads.

  15. Anyone who doesn’t think this year is a real failure needs their heads examined. 3 games where we were in winning positions and let it slip. Winning either one of Galway or Dublin would have put us in a great position to have a proper crack at the championship, particularly the Dublin game. But sure you had people on here celebrating a draw with Dublin as if it was some great achievement when in actuality it was as good as a loss and the team themselves knew it. Nobody should be celebrating draws. But that’s the mentality of some people in this county – not winning is actually good enough for some people. So maybe this year isn’t a failure to those folks.

  16. Precisely the point All41. This was a major problem all year. Junior C type errors game on game.
    Not good enough.

  17. Will we ever win Sam?

    We will have to wait another year. A great 2nd half performance last night and in the end pipped at the post be Derry who probably deserved it?

    Our first half was terrible giving the ball away on at least 8 occasions!

    Sideline were at fault as we had no tactics for the blanket defence after 2 years of this management team.
    Why wasn’t Hession and Towey not introduced sooner or the O’Connor brothers

    Why was our best player Aiden substituted. We were leaderless without him! Was it because of his GPS data ( or whatever it’s called)

    What about our frindge players like Irwin, McStay, and others-never given a run during the league. Surely these players will lose interest
    Great admiration for the extended panel ?

    We need a review of this management team?

    I feel for the players who gave it their best no doubt but maybe we are not good enough?

    Fair dues to the Rossies and Gaillimh for progressing.

    Minor match on Tg4 this evening at 5.30 pm. Go neiri le foireann Mhuigeo

  18. A tough one to take yesterday but in truth I fancied Derry to beat us.
    It was as certain they would deploy the blanket as it was as certain we would struggle with it. An easy game plan for Harte. And Derry were not back to their swashbuckling best.
    The bald fact is we only managed to beat one D1 team in the championship this year, a relegated Roscommon.
    The workload we put in to games seems huge (maybe TsuDhoNim can point to telling stats), so much so that we struggle to back up good performances. I can’t recall us doing so under the current manager or indeed the latter part of Horan 2.
    Hard to define progress- the caution and conservatism that as helped defensively as stymied us in attack. More difficult to beat but finding it more difficult to win.
    We have been unlucky under the current management and I am not talking about in game luck but luck of the draw: The Galway/Dublin combo last year was low odds and getting Derry this time out a week on from the Dublin encounter was bad luck. Sure, we put ourselves in that position but still…..

  19. Only positive thing to come out of yesterday is that hopefully we won’t have to listen to the extremely childish attempt at trolling that has been going on here for the last year.inter county management is not easy and I am sure that Kevin mcstay is hugely disappointed today.Not really sure where they go as a management team but changes will be’s hard to fathom how we didn’t appear to come with anything new whatsoever to counter the blanket defence set up.The idea that we weren’t showing our hand earlier in the year was blown completely out of the water

  20. Roscommon and Derry both lose three Championship games and are in the draw for 1/4 Finals – Mayo lose on game by a point and are out of the Championship – A Fair System???? – hard luck to players and management – valiant effort

  21. Dreamy, I said I wouldn’t comment but I can’t let your post pass.
    Firstly, I have a challenge for you and I ask in in fun and kindness. Can you give me two positive things about our team? That is, two things you unequivocally like. I am curious. I ask because it appears that it is sometimes easier to list the problems, perceived faults or negatives than the pluses. I am sure you are passionate about Mayo’s success too.
    Secondly, I wish to push back against your opinion that “anyone who doesn’t think this year is a real failure needs their heads examined.”

    The year is a disappointment and we didn’t get where we wanted to go as players, management or fans.
    A failure implies that we had power to get it right. We did, of course, but a lot was outside our control – the provinces, the system, the week on week organisation built into it. I cannot come down like a ton of bricks on mgt and players.
    For example, Kerry are straight into a QF on a stroll. Dublin almost similar. (The provinces).
    We have two teams going into the QFs which have lost three games and good luck to them. We lost one by a point and we’re out. (The system).
    We had to play yesterday’s game after a six-day turnaround. We wouldn’t have chosen that at the start of the season. (6-day/week turnaround).

    The above three points are salient – this is why McStay rightly pinpointed the importance, for our full subsequent season in the AI series – of winning the Dublin game last week. It turns on a sixpence here.

    We are in year 2 of McStay’s tenure with a young developing team. It is right that we have AI aspirations every year. But we aren’t the finished article yet. We know this. We’re adding and developing.
    This year is a net gain in development although we are out before the QFs in a very strange system.
    1. We spent most of the year perfecting playing against a blanket defence and playing that style of football. It’s not our main style, just one aspect. I think all the different aspects of our play were then going to shine in the AI series but we haven’t got there. That’s why posters kept giving out about slow ponderous play. Kevin and all were locking that down because they knew we needed it for our development as teams knocked us out that way. Derry really dug in with that system in a very tight McHale Park yesterday (first half was stifling). A poster above mentioned triple sweepers. If it was on another pitch we might well have prevailed. But important – though horrible and unglamorous – work has been done here.
    2. We learned to shoot more from distance (not done all the time, but done noticeably in one or two games).
    3. We had a very tight defence this year with good quality tackling.
    4. Much improved performances from Eoghan McL who can be a real weapon. He can score goals. His point taking has improved.
    5. Tommy and Mattie coming into their own and really influencing games.
    6. Fergal Boland back in the fold and important.
    7. Aidan playing some of his best football with much more thought put into his role.
    8. David McBrien playing v well and seeming to have grown in stature and confidence.
    9. Ryan excellent (scores, work, some incredible tackling yesterday!)
    10. Less cluelessness than shown in the Cork and Louth games last year. That’s a plus and there’s more to build on here.
    11. Donnacha McHugh grew hugely in stature this year.
    12. Striking – Horan and this management team have rejuvenated the Mayo team so that it looks like a young team now.
    13. Kevin and his mgt team would say we have developed more consistency in getting results this year. I would agree and this steadiness is a positive we can work with.
    The team were more integrated this year.
    I’m not doing justice to it all in my post but if people LOOK INTO things, they’ll see the progress and building based on last year.
    Taking a bald approach to tick off all the negatives will skew what has been built.
    You don’t suddenly magic into being an AI winning team – you have to build it – unless you’re Jimmy and I will watch his trajectory in Donegal with interest.
    On the comparing us to the 2011-2017 team and saying we don’t have the players and we don’t have the quality and we’re getting knocked out, has anyone thought that we operating in a more complex Championship environment now than we were then? Then Dublin and maybe Kerry were the main contenders. Now there are several contenders, there are more complex styles of play out there and there’s an unpredictable Championship structure to navigate.
    Lastly, on the letting games slip – I agree, Dreamy, this is the thing we’ve had to learn from this year. It doesn’t make this team a failure or this year a failure. It’s disappointing. We’re not perfect. It makes us a team doing stupid things that we can now work on.

    I do have a criticism and it annoys me but I will hold it lightly in the scheme of things. Why didn’t we tear into them from the off last night when the momentum and self belief was with us after coming out of the Dublin game? It appears a no-brainer for me when the energy is with us. Mayo thrive in energy. Anyway, back to the long grass we go.

  22. I’m in the camp of we improved, as someone said harder to beat. Our results were better this year despite going out a round earlier and we probably had more injuries than last year so progress- yes.
    I don’t like the level of abuse of Rochford who took us to AI Finals and nearly won them. McStay picked what he felt was a strong back room team and gave them leadership roles, doesn’t undermine them. I don’t know whether or not Aido’s gps hits a cliff near the end of these games. He’s a big man. Probably should have left him on for the few mins left in the last 2 games. I think it’s a fair gripe people have but besides that, the level of abuse at a fella who brought us as far as we ever went before is over the top and ungracious to say the least.

  23. Our footballers fought well so let’s not be too hard on them – we were a bit overrun in middle 8 in 1st half – Matty needs a partner at midfield. Paddy Durcan badly missed.

  24. Excellent Swallow..on the money. We’ll undoubtedly watch Dublin struggle with Derry’s energy sapping strategy when, or if they meet, in the quarters, but their heads will be in the game both halves. Mayo came out tamely IMO and handed over power from the get go to Derry. They were their equals in every department except psychologically. The Dubs won’t let themselves be dictated to, not voluntarily anyway.

  25. There were times yesterday where mayo players got in the way of mayo shooters. This point was made on Sunday game analysis after the Galway game this year…. however, this point was also made by Paul Galvin 15 years ago on the Sunday game.
    I’ve asked a few times what the point is of our corner backs ambling up with the ball to then turn and pass it back… no problem whatsoever with a fast paced back going direct but this shite we saw all year of strolling up while teams reset really was hard to watch. The lack of a scoring half forward line has been a major issue for years now.
    Whoever is at the helm has to find 3 to 5 lads that can win and then physically kick a ball 35 meters. Certain individuals on her pulled me when I suggested Roscommon have better forwards. I hope they saw the show the Roscommon forwards put on yesterday while ours didn’t score from play in the first half.
    Fuck the playmaker stuff. I called for jim mcguiness as manager last time around. If Kevin stays can we please give him a number 2 that has won an All Ireland. If not Eamon Fitzmaurice or somebody that has won something should be sought.

  26. Laughable at the amount of people here blaming it on the championship structures. Everyone knew the structures at the start of the season. Pure clutchibg at straws.

    Done a sober rewatch on GaaGo this morning,some thoughts…

    – Derry were the better team, without a doubt. Apart from a 10 minute period after half time and a Jordan Flynn tour de force in 2nd half of etc. Derry played all the football

    – Rogers, Mckinless and McCluskey all immense for them and Lachlan Murray tortured

    – speaking of Jordan Flynn he was my mayo motm, it was hard to pick anyone who performed for the full game. Mcbrien done well on McGuigan in normal time, and AOS and Tommy were good in that 15 minute burst after halftime but Flynns impact was greatest. He was superb in ET with 2 massive scores and few fetches over Glass, all after being nearly knocked out in first half. A natural leader

    – we had 5(!) shots at goal in total in the 1st half. It was an absolute wretched half from us, looked utterly devoid of ideas against a compact defence.

    – allowed Derry to go short on kickouts which was absolutely criminal especially with armagh and donegal setting a clear template on forcing Derry long

    – not as outraged as others on the AOS substitution. No more than championship structures feels like an easy excuse for people to cling to over the winter (just like last year). He was absolutely goosed after putting in a big effort after halftime. He had emptied the tank but he was out on his feet, spent the 5 minutes before being hooked gasping for breath in the fullback line and one very bad turnover running into traffic. His race was run after another big shift

    – derrys big leaders all stood up in ET, Doherty/Rogers/Mckinless/Glass all looking to impact the game. Don’t think we got anything from our bench for the 2nd year running

    – all in all has to go down as a poor year, being knocked out in PQF by a team who are themselves going to go out next week is a bad year. Donncha McHugh the only obviously improved player under this management

    – I think next year has to be a last chance for this highly touted management team. Theres no evidence of progress under them or a style of play but in the absence of outstanding candidates I would give them another bite at it

  27. What a brilliant post Swallow Swoops I agree with so much you said but then maybe I need my head examined because I thought we did quite a good few things right this year and certainly showed improvement. But for some if we don’t win it out it’s a failure and so we have been failing for over 70 years. So what if our players aren’t quite good enough it’s a failure anyway Amazing that coming from a county who haven’t won since 1951. I am desperately disappointed today but. am not foolish enough to be lashing out blame to a group of players and management who represented my county with pride courage and character. Maybe I need my head examined. As regards the chap who said the players deserve a better management I wonder. Did he canvas the players to see are they unhappy with the set up this year. To me it looked like they were playing 100 per cent for the management You don’t show the courage and character they showed in the last week if you are not playing for management

  28. We haven’t improved one bit unfortunately over the past 2 years. Thank God we didn’t have to play a fully fit Galway or Derry when they were going well or fully fit. I stopped reading Swallow Swoops post after the 1st 2 points. Point 1. Perfecting playing against a blanket defense …….NOPE and 2. We learned to shoot more from distance NOPE…….we couldn’t shoot from anywhere yesterday. Players like Jack Carney could score a couple of years ago, now they can only play it backwards and sideways.

  29. Pluralism of truth.
    That’s very true this morning.
    Lose to Galway due to 2 soft frees in final minutes.
    Draw with Dublin because of a brilliant play by Dubs with 19 seconds to go.
    Draw with Derry and out on a lottery of penalties.
    Sam punches that ball over bar and we are looking at a different story.

  30. Still awful disappointed after the day before. I think Kevin should be left in his position and hopefully he will stay for 2025. We are very close and we don’t need a managerial change now. We can have a rest now and come out fighting in January. Hopefully aidan and cillian give it one more year. I really feel 2025 could be the year we finally win Sam. Btw good luck to the minors today

  31. I don’t know if we are going backwards or our wheels are just spinning in the mud. Are we better or worse than two years ago? Anyone who watches club football will have been worried in recent years. The quality and standard in most club games is shocking. This seeps into the quality player on the inter county team. Coaching and structures need to be looked at and that’s not a knee jerk to last nights display.

    To win an all Ireland you also need a tactically astute ruthless manager. Have we got that?

    Hopefully the minors can salvage something today.

  32. Swallow – I think Aidan O’Shea has been very good this year, which makes his substitution very puzzling and I feel Matthew Ruane has rediscovered his form which is a positive too. I think we have a couple of good young players, though I don’t think they are of the same standard as the 2010s team.

    This year actually was very much in our control. As I said, 3 games where we were in winning positions and let it slip, plus a very conservative style of play that consistently leaves the opposition in it. Nobody fears playing Mayo because we are actually quite easy to play against these days. Not getting to a QF when we were very much in a great position to do so IS undoubtedly a failure and I actually think the players and management will know that themselves.

  33. When you dont try and solve a simple problem like getting a reliable left footed free taker , how the fuck do you hope of winning an All Ireland.Instead of persisting with Aidan Orme last year he played Jason Doherty and Kevin McLoughlin at 34 and were both retiring.Doesnt deserve another 2 years.

  34. Well said Swallow Swoops, we certainly improved year on year, think a lot of folks would benefit from thinking about the expectations coming into this year off the back of what many described as the worst county championship in living memory. One thing that gets me excited for 2025, we don’t know which new rules they’ll adopt yet, but the purpose of them will be to negate the crap Derry churned out in the first half. If the 2 point system comes in we have plenty of long range shooters; Tommy, Ryan, Cillian, Jordan, Matty, Conor, Fergal, all capable of hitting from distance(and more I’m missing

  35. Making my way back now , hungover and depressed .

    It is what it is but very fine margins too .

    I cant be arsed getting into detail yet , too raw . Thanks for the effort by players and management in 2024 .

    Well done to the two neighbours too, again its probably old age and the softening of the brain but i dont have that hatred i used to , dont want them to win an all Ireland either though if im honest . Enjoy the ride though , dont get too bogged down on what the outcome will be in croker , its a great occasion , savour it . Great memories are made at hq , the buzz , the hotel , the bantèr , the sense of pride your county has made it .

  36. Someone said it already but we just aren’t tight enough in defence yet. It’s really that simple. Yes, we’ve reduced our goals conceded but look at scores/points we are conceding…giving opposition forward too much space. It’s happened all year. We have the personnel to have an even meaner defence but we aren’t setting up correctly which to me is just mind boggling and then when we do turnover opposition we aren’t breaking anywhere near fast enough. That’s the formula Mayo need to be successful.

  37. Looking at the 3 matches yesterday.
    Gal 14 Mon 11
    Ross 14 Tyr 12
    Derry 12 Mayo 1-9 70 mins
    3 matches, 1 goal from a placed ball.

    It’s clear that all the games had 14 men behind the ball. It’s horrible stuff to watch and destroying the game. I hope new rules will come into place that has a minimum of 3 players inside your own half at all times. Surely that will create more space to attack into.

    We also have to sharping up our skill levels such as kicking points from 35m plus to beat packed defences.

  38. If we look at the setup that headquarters bestowed on us we only had to come third in our get to a preliminary quarter final. We went all out to beat Roscommon, Galway and Dublin. We should have left our team to peak at the knock out stages as Derry did. Was this Mickey Harte’s strategy?Fair play to him if it was. Our lads were great but maybe our management were rope a dope victims. I know it is fine in hindsight but if we are faced with the same format next year why bust a gut when you know you can get to the knockout stages relatively easily.

  39. I am 58 years old. I have been following Mayo since the days of Joe Corcoran and PJ McGrath (real marquee forwards). We have had ups and downs and the only constant has been failure to win an All-Ireland and allied to that an acceptance of failure.

    We are so used to tugging the forelock that we expect Kerry, Dublin et al to be better and then pride ourselves on the acceptance of that. Sure didn’t the lads do their best, weren’t we unlucky with injuries/ref/turnaround time etc., we’re in transition/rebuilding, we can’t expect to repeat the would’ve/could’ve/should’ve of the “great” team of a few years ago and so on and on.

    I would like to see Mayo win all-irelands before I shuffle off but there isn’t a hope in hell of that happening while the current approach continues. If we are serious about winning (and I question if we are) then we need radical change. Tweaks will not do it.

    Above all else we need to change our mentality and develop a much much higher football IQ. Despite their experience our management team has no plan B, no understanding of in-game management, no focused ruthlessness, no ability to solve known problems (e.g. the notorious blanket), and no fearlessness. We are easy to play against because the top managers know what causes us problems and know how to set up against us.

    Finally, can anyone possibly imagine a Mayo player having the presence of mind and the sheer guts to do what Nicky Quaid did against Galway last year. This is the mentality required and we are light years away from it. Unless we break through every barrier in search of this we can expect the endless carousel of failure to continue.

  40. @PJ, that score yesterday 1-9 in 70 minutes probably tells it own story, remember back to the 1997 All Ireland final, no blanket defences back then, Mayo got 1-7 in the game.

  41. Swallow swoops,
    1. How have we perfected playing against a blanket defence?
    2. We done it a bit like last year when teams were off peak in earlier rounds of league etc. when things tightened up that went out window. Is it true no Mayo forward had shot on target in first half yesterday?
    3. Our tackling is not very good, look at soft frees that have proven so costly in last 3 games along. Hands in from behind, push in back etc. some players in particular are guilty, including ones who have benefited from nearly 10 years of Buckley masterclasses.
    4/5. I’d be inclined to agree.
    6. An addition to panel, but management dropped him to bench a few rounds before he picked his suspension after lost some of the freedoms he enjoyed in league.
    7/8/9. Largely agree.
    10. Don’t see being slightly less clueless than last year as a great win. We still ended up with no left footed kicker yesterday, and hadn’t the where with all to see out three leads on the game’s that counted near the death. With such an experienced set up in place.
    11/12. Fair enough.
    13. More consistency in losing leads near death from a winning position isn’t a great look either in the key games.

    So some things have indeed improved, Reape as well his kickouts and composure seem more assured and he is very focal in directing the troops, in a positive manner also.

    But given the change in performance Donegal have made on one year there’s quite a contrast.

  42. Ye I agree with the position of no Left footed free kicker. Ryan missed a free from the right side with his right against Dublin last week it went into Cluxtons hands. Last night Ryan missed again from right with right foot. Ryan is a fantastic player and has done great for us. I felt so sorry for him last night. Missing the peno at the end and been asked to take a difficult free on the wrong side for a right footed kicker. I know it would mean changing the goal keeper but I was at a good few games last years Club Championship with all clubs involved. I seen Byrne from Castlebar kicking some outrages points from the right hand side with his left foot.
    He seems to be gone off the radar although. I think
    He may have got one game this year. Not sure about that. But surely with our continued lack of a dependable left footed kicker he should be look at again.

  43. Brilliant post Ex-pat.

    Good to see AOS and Matty Ruane togged in Breaffy this morning.

  44. The West is Best, maybe that is the problem that you stopped reading my post after point 2 and you didn’t even try to grasp what I was trying to day in point 1.
    Sure it’s easier and clearer to just leap to conclusions and say the obvious things.
    Row in with a chorus behind you and you’re completely right.
    Sack the coach, sack the manager. Now we’re sucking diesel.

  45. Gizmo, I didn’t say we perfected playing against a blanket defence or at least didn’t mean to say we did. I wanted to say we spent our time trying to perfect it – we dedicated a lot of time and effort to it and it will be ongoing. In my opinion we made ourselves much better at playing this type of game and not getting caught out in it.
    The Leaving Cert Honours paper A1 grade test of our success was in McHale Park against Derry yesterday. Did they play a triple sweeper? It’s a tough ask to ace that defensive challenge and yet we could have if we were better.

  46. Swallow Swoops, I really don’t get your first point, is it that we are working on one element at a time with the view management were going to majestically bring it all together in the QF stages? It seems a bit bonkers. We’ve played on bigger pitches against blankets and still don’t see how we have been “perfecting” playing against blankets 😮

  47. I posted above before your reply game in so apologies for the follow up message. It looks like a lot of time spent ineffectually so as we really didn’t cope with the blanket.
    It’s disappointing for the players, but such is the nature of sport.

    Best of luck to Sligo and Kevin McLoughlin today. Will be tough ask for them v Down.

  48. Dreamy, super to read those positive comments about Aidan and Mattie. Thank you for sharing them.

  49. Louth into the quarters
    We 1000% got the worst draw possible in Derry
    We would have labored but beaten either of Monaghan and Cork

  50. Hello All,

    Yes, the players gave everything. .Kevin McStay seems a sociable guy and can’t help but wonder if he might ask James Horan to come back for a year. It would be a great boost to so many of that team and no doubt would find one or two more.
    Just a thought but I can see smiles on that Mayo team.

    Ciaran 2.

    Congratulations to An Lu.

  51. KM 79 we would have beaten them but would probably be ripped apart in Croke Park on Saturday by Kerry or Armagh or God forbid Galway. Not too worry lets get behind our minors and our clubs what else can you do

  52. Dry as a bone here, Paddyjoe! It’s a perfect summer’s evening here in the midlands – what we wouldn’t have done for this kind of weather in Castlebar yesterday.

  53. Ah jaysus louth through I guess fair play to them but really makes our exit so sickening.

    Good luck to the minors hope they bring us some bit of joy

  54. If we had held on against Dublin and Dublin had beaten Derry now we would be playing Louth for a place in the semi final of the all ireland. Good luck to the Mayo minors.

  55. We have a left footed free taker. Paul Towey. Problem is its hard to take them when you’re not playing.

  56. Need to tighten up a bit in our full back line for the minor match, Armagh have had the crossbar twice already for goal chances.

  57. When was the last time we had an outfield player who could kick 45s or long frees from the ground from distance as young McDonald is capable of doing? He’ll only improve with these dead ball kicks with experience and as he bulks up. It really is a massive advantage to have someone with the ability to kick from distance which is another reason why I can’t wait to see him make the move to seniors.

  58. We haven’t had a consistent outfielder kicking frees off the floor since Maurice Sheridan IMO.

  59. Mayo45, with his athleticism and stature he will be targeted by AFL definitely and likely NFL now the international player pathway had been expanded.

  60. That lad who went off for Mayo got a nasty knee to the head which wasn’t spotted by the ref. I hope he’ll be okay, it looked very bad.

  61. All-square here at half-time: 1-4 to 0-7. Andrew Quinn with the goal and points from Kobe McDonald (0-3, two frees) and Oisín Deane for us. Armagh far more purpose to them, hit the woodwork twice and have carved us open repeatedly. We’ve the wind in the second half.

  62. I haven’t read all the comments but has anybody mentioned that few teams, if any, would have beaten Derry yesterday, their defence was rock solid, excellent teamwork all round and their forwards were better at penetrating the blanket defence. A well oiled machine and definite contenders for the All Ireland. Can’t fault Mayo’s performance, they tried their best but it wasn’t good enough. Taking off Aidan and Mattie very questionable decisions though, it weakened our team when we needed to be at our strongest.

  63. Level at half-time.

    I’d be a bit concerned at how often Armagh have cut through the middle of our defence, and how little ball were winning off our own kickouts. In contrast, we’re having to work hard for our scores, and some of our lighter forwards are running the gauntlet at times into several Orange clad defenders.

    On the plus side, young MacDonald looks dangerous whenever he gets on the ball, one solo run from his own half being the highlight. We probably need to get him into the game more.

  64. Lucky to be level at HT in the minors. Need to tighten up a lot more in defence and raise the intensity levels.

  65. @It Means Nothing to Me – Jeez you’re right. I just about remember him from the 90s.

    @Gizmobobs – Don’t be going on with that kind of talk (joking) I’m in a depressed enough mood from yesterday as it is.

  66. Mayonaze, if he does great. But if gets opportunity of scholarship in states with NFL it be big decision to pass up on.

    If check out leader kicking they’ve several lads lined up for scholarship’s. Different gravy there to AFL of make it.

  67. @Mo, I think Derry were only rock solid because we stood off them for the whole game. We never tested them. Considering how demoralised Derry were in the last few games – the Westmeath game included – we should have been able to exploit that. Instead we gave them lots of room and time to settle in and gather up their confidence. I think whoever gets Derry in the next round will deliberately press those buttons, and we’ll find that Derry’s indiscipline and chaos is still there when pressure is applied.

  68. Why on earth is our keeper going long on kickouts. We are. Being beaten at midfield.

    Unfortunately our boys just aren’t zoned in today. Armagh the better side so far. We’ll need a goal

  69. Not looking great here. Only four points down but we’re not showing any game smarts at all: we’re hitting high balls into forwards surrounded by opposition defenders, running the ball all the time when we’re the physically slighter team etc.

    Urgently need a change in personnel and tempo.

  70. Armagh packing defence and hitting attack fast…. Now where have we seen that before.

  71. Armagh much physically stronger team. Lucky they hit the crossbar twice early on

  72. Armagh look ravenous, Mayo not at the same level of intensity or strength at all.
    5 points down now, and can’t see a way back unfortunately

  73. Ah this is a terribly disappointing performance. Basic skill level and decision making way off. Those Armagh boys giving our fellas a lesson. Miles the better team now and again, it’s a simple strategy. Pack your defence and counter attack quickly. What’s wrong with Mayo teams and strategy!??

  74. We’re getting battered here, quite honestly. One point in the second half tells its own story. The plan seems to be to give the ball to Kobe and he’ll win it for us, which has come unstuck.

    Irrespective of the result of this particular game, we need to talk about what’s happening at underage levels. It wasn’t so long since Mayo were regularly in national finals, both at minor and U21 (back in the day). This seems to have tailed off a lot in the last six or seven years, particularly at U20. Didn’t we finish bottom of the pile in the Connacht U20 Championship this year?

    I don’t know whether it’s a societal thing or down to coaching. Haven’t seen many Mayo players throw a shoulder today.

  75. Ah in fairness Armagh are a joy to watch playing free flowing football cutting through us like a knife through butter. Our lads look tired and physicially smaller

  76. Systems failure is probably the best way to describe this game, they have no kicking option and they are trying to press high up the pitch but armagh are so comfortable on the ball they get out of defence and then mayo are wide open defensively and the obvious thing they mayo in general have been way off with the basic skills unfortunately.

  77. Bad weekend for us hard luck to the minors. Still think kobe Mcdonald is a star for the future.

  78. As I suspected the standard in Connacht for the minor this year was way down. Galway had their worst minor side in donkey’s years. Sligo were poor. Roscommon only middling at best. Mayo the best of a bad lot but the Ulster teams and perhaps Kerry look at a different level.

  79. Go easy lads they are young. Willie Joe you have a duty here to keep a lid on it.

  80. Is it just me or has or S&C gone to shite since Barry Solan left? I watched back the 2012 AI final against Donegal a few days back and I was amazed at the strength of Cillian and Aidan both only 20/21 years old. Our lads these days look very weak compared to other counties.

    The likes of Coyne, Brickden, Callainan, McHugh could all put on another 10kg or so of muscle. Seems to be a trend with the U20s and now the Minors. Shame to see the way today’s result panning out.

  81. its not just the minor, our players in general the last 4/5 years are so small compared to the other counties around the top 8 . its very noticeable we are togging light

  82. Thatteamwontstart good man/woman telling Willie Joe his job. The fella who gives us this great platform. Good on ya

  83. Everyone has a duty to keep their comments reasonable, Thatteamwontstart, and unlike most contributors here I’m at the game in Longford.

  84. Also as someone who has watched this team from the get go, armagh where miles better then anything we have played this year so it probably wasn’t great preparation in the first place going in today.

  85. It’s been a bad weekend for Mayo football. Wouldn’t go too hard on lads today, nobody goes out to play that badly and managements don’t set up to lose like that. Lost to a better team today and no shame in that. The big thing is if we’re learning from these defeats. Honestly, I don’t know if we ever do.
    It’s a very depressing feeling today to have no interest left in the Intercounty season on the 23rd June. I know there are far more important things in life but football means so much to so many of us Mayo nuts! Thanks Willie Joe for all the updates and brilliant articles. I might leave posting til the fbd!

  86. I’ve deleted one objectionable comment on the minor game but all okay so far aside from that. This is an underage team so please continue to keep the comments reasonable. And, Thatteamwontstart, I need no lecture from you as to what my ‘duty’ is so you can pipe down on that front.

  87. are 1 of armagh, louth or roscommon guaranteed a semifinal place? As stated above by a poster if mayo held out against the dubs we’d be playing louth in the quarter final.

  88. Disappointing end for the boys. They put in a great effort over course of year.
    Most people involved in club level with this age group would have known where certain deficiencies lied. The team that played week in week out has been largely same for last 3 years or am I wrong?

    I think a root and branch review of the underage to senior structures is needed badly within the county. With way players develop at different ages their should be plenty of personnel movement at the various age groups as move through these so called academy years.

  89. It was very difficult for the Mayo minors to play this evening so go easy. Every mayo gaa person had to be feeling very deflated today including these minors if they were in mchale park or watched the mayo v Derry game last evening.

  90. Hard luck to the minors, they met a physically superior and better coached team today. But scoring 6 points in total after we had the best possible start to the game is a fairly stark statistic. What did we get from play, 4 points the entire game?

    I wouldn’t be impressed with the management team based on today. There didn’t seem to be much of a plan and the basic skills let us down at times. Our goalie, for instance, should have been told to look to the wings or for a short option rather than repeatedly knocking the ball up the middle, where we were getting cleaned out.

    Hopefully MacDonald gets a run at U20 level next year, he looked dangerous when he got the ball in advanced positions, and hopefully can refine his free taking from the ground, which would be a huge asset that has been lacking in Mayo for a while.

  91. The main issue is our Academy SnC clearly doesn’t focus on strength and power. Our team were fine skillwise, but they couldn’t defend or break through Armagh due to the difference in size and strength.
    Something is sub par in development SnC because we’re getting bossed on that front.
    Our 1996-99 minors one year older okay had way more physical size and power than what we’ve been producing now.

  92. Instead of spending 2 million on the senior team, would it be better to invest the money in coaching at the grass roots level for a few years. We really are a shambles and need a whole rethink about our approach. Those minor lads should have been playing club and schools football all year too. Some lads on that Mayo Minor squad haven’t played a game in 8 months. It’s crackers.

  93. The future is bright in the north of our island. that was both a skillful and workmanlike performance.
    Sligo the hard luck story of the weekend. The sending off the turning point but they are going in the right direction.
    For some reason we weren’t as much of a team as Armagh were. There’ll be brighter days in mayo

  94. @Gizmobobs ha yeah.. I may support Scotland definetly over England any day haha but don’t follow the football at all really!

    @Jimbo totally agree with you there I’d say they felt a sting from the way we went out last night even the mayo crowd looked deflated at the game who can blame them though.

  95. @Thatteamwontstart, I don’t think anyone has said anything particularly wrong and the issue many have is more a concern with strategy, structure, coaching and conditioning. Tbh it’s not much use winning Connacht at underage if you’re ranked in a QF(last year) and a SF (this year). The goal of Mayo GAA and its academy, I’d hope, is to nurture and enhance talent. Unless you have a genius manager like McGuinness who won Sam with a bunch of footballers with no underage pedigree, the reality is that it’s very hard to create a senior intercounty side capable of winning an All Ireland without success at underage. Our team of 2012-17 was built upon the strength of underage teams in the mid to late noughties. Lots of us here follow underage football closely and it’s clear to see we have not been producing enough over the past decade. It’s sad to see. I think that minor team today can do a lot better than what they showed but tactically we were way off and the lads didn’t show up. Our key players all underperformed.

    There was a podcast done 12 months ago or so with the head of the academy. It was all very nice. I and I know many others, would really like to hear a more in-depth version.

    Ah, such a disappointing weekend.

  96. Strength and conditioning comes later, not before basic skills and techniques.
    Not referring to this or any other game in particular. The heavy lifting comes after the hand- foot coordination and lung busting.
    Those counties primarily focused on physique development tend to flop later on.

  97. I’ve no way to prove it, but the eye test from minor to u20 to senior looks like we prioritize running stamina over physical power.
    Even at senior we do not look physically powerful.

  98. Mark, Armagh were much better on skills and decision making today. Derry same at minor two years running. Mayo are well off the pace now in skills, strategy, coaching and conditioning. It’s very disheartening because I still believe we have enough natural footballers – the evidence is there to see – we simply aren’t at the races but yet we kept getting told we have the best of this that and the other, coaching teams get talked up locally and all the ‘no stone being left unturned’ guff.

  99. Grand, it’s a reasonable concern for the youngsters and families that might read the blog after a bad weekend.

  100. The no stone left unturned line gets trotted out time and again. I’m convinced Dara Canavan would not be a star player if with Mayo. We’d ruin his speed with plenty slow running.
    If one thing needs urgent attention it’s that SnC needs an urgent review. Tyrone, Armagh and Derry look like they’re going to pull clear of us at senior level looking at underage results and physical development.

  101. @mayonaze,
    You won’t find me disagreeing with one word you’ve said. I’m talking country wide, not county wide, in relation to physical development stuff. You don’t see Kerry or Dublin sweating the small stuff at youth level. Armagh and Derry et al can excel all they like at underage level but where’s the transference to senior at?
    Mayo football is in a good place. I firmly believe the problem lies in self belief. Can’t elaborate because I’d be repeating myself about what Montessori said about the head being as important as the hands.

  102. Reasonable Mayo following in Pearce park .
    We looked impressive for 15 mins and was happy to be close at half time .
    The Orange lads were physically taller and stronger around mid field and that was the platform for their impressive running game in the second half .
    Our backs did OK and midfield worked hard .
    A pity we just didn’t throw more forward for the last 20mins .
    Anyway Armagh the better team .
    Hard luck to our young bucks

  103. Are you in any doubt that I’m not aware of such concerns, Thatteamwontstart? If so then you clearly have no comprehension of the amount of time I’ve spent for the last 17 years trawling through post-match comments to make sure that what’s said about named players is fair and reasonable. I’m sorry but comments like yours make me wonder why I bloody well bother at all.

  104. Agree Mark Dempsey – skills first then S&C focused after minor, even after under 20. We tend to be quite good at transitioning these fellas to senior over a 2-3 year period as Horan was very good at that despite mediocre underage success

  105. So improvement you say ok. McStays brief was to win all Ireland with this team that Horan built and reinvigorated during his last tenure as manager. He said as much himself. McStay and Co blooded some ok players, and won a league barely, but the team under his tenure since then was badly exposed and hammered by Dublin in the second half of last years quarterfinal. This year the players under his tenure let 3 games slip from winnable positions through bad player utilization and management practices. I.e having our best player subbed and not available to finish out a game. I have said it all year, Aido has 50 mins to influence in a game before he gasses out. It’s mind boggling to me that you start him and not have him finish a game of this importance. And he is still by a country mile our best and most influential player. And we will need him again next year if we are to have any chance. His presence was surely missed when it was needed the most yesterday in extra time. Also the laborious nature of our lateral movement style attack plan all year was plain for everyone to see. It’s brutal to watch and energy sapping for all players involved. We play hold-ball for 5 mins passing it backwards. Then the play breaks down and we left badly exposed and open at the back. It’s bad when you see the likes of Ruane coming off early. What is management team thinking, you have a ball winner of Aidos caliber at full forward and not once does the ball come in quick and long like it should, route one. He has been asked to do everything, is forced to roam out to Midfield and the half-forward line to win his own ball. Is it any wonder he is gassed. He plays all over the place because of the teams inability to supply him with quality ball needed and not having the attack going direct through him. We need a more direct style of attack for next year. Such a style would open up space for the rest of our forward line, players like O Donaghue in theory could thrive off broken ball. And could free up further space for our forwards to drive at their men and open up space for our scorers. The best way to beat a blanket kick over it. He never gets the right sort of ball in. It’s seems like it just not in or DNA to use the Kick pass in. For me O Shea talent has been wasted these last few years and still his contribution is huge for the team. While the performance levels of this team has dropped since 2021, in no way can you possibly consider been knocked out of the preliminaries as good enough. We are middle of the pack division one team, capable of beating the best on our day if everything goes right. I like Kevin and would give him one more year to prove himself. He can say we matched Dublin this year, but we are now out and deservedly so. No complaints!!! Time to rebuild and get some coaches in who have winning all Ireland medals on their resume. Let’s see who retires also, as I’m sure there will be many. Disappointing year for Mayo Gaa

  106. I’ve huge admiration for your work. It’s not an attack on you by any stretch. Maybe I’m too late to the party on social media. I’ll step back and not annoy you again.

  107. Hard luck to the Mayo minors, best in Connacht by some way but Armagh looks like a very good team.

  108. Depressing weekend for Mayo football. Seniors better than their last 12 exit but is what it is now. Minors hit a brick wall today against Armagh side who could do as Galway did in 2022 (not win their province and win the All Ireland)

  109. Final point of annoyance from last night from me

    Derry lined 7/8 players in front of a lot of our frees including long range ones. Half their team. That meant half our team was free. None of our players or management thought quickly on their feet that half our team was therefore unmarked
    For the Colm Reape one in particular I was roaring for someone like Conroy to run off his shoulder as he was taking the free. A little dink pass to him and he was in on goal and would have had support players too.
    We are so rigid in all that we do.
    This has to change next year if McStay and Rochford stay on .
    It’s too formulaic .
    Donegal cut Derrys system to pieces as they were braver and really went for it
    We are out because we did not .

  110. Bonfire night and we are out of the championship when it used to be just getting up and is a strange feeling really after all those pilgrimages to croker back to my first visit there in 1985 .The huge frustration for supporters and particularly the management is we had our destiny in our own hands in 3 crucial games and couldn’t close it out .it’s almost as if our failure to close out a 6 point lead in both finals with Meath in 1996 has followed us around since.we aren’t a million miles away but it feels a bit like that this evening.The current system is totally ridiculous and why the GPA are not calling the lack of player welfare in this totally unbalanced system is extraordinary.what is their purpose otherwise.I have to say I have sympathy for Kevin mcstay in one way .it was his dream job but it’s turning into a nightmare

  111. I think as you get older the defeats get easier to take or maybe the final defeat to Tyrone in 21 hit a few of so hard we realise we havent won Sam in 74 years and we are as far away as ever now so it might just never happen again

  112. @Glorydays totally agree with you there still feeling shite aboutbit as we all are

    But not as bad tbh.

    I know we will come back next year like we always do and it wasn’t a hammering at least our downfall was the first half just were not there at all.

    I’d rather go out now on penalties then getting hammered in quarters next week which might have been likely with the ridiculous turn around in games.

    Its tough to take now but we will be back hope the guys have a great summer.

  113. I think you’re right on that one glorydays. After the final in 21, something changed. In the finals before that, I’d be sick for a month. After that final, I continued on with my night, had a few drinks and said well that’s that. Can’t explain it, but it was really one that was thrown away, and the end of an era so to speak for the team of the last decade. Sickened about last night just after the game but honestly the more I think about it. If we won on penalties last night, and met kerry next week after 3 games and extra time in 2 weeks. Theyd be absolutely shattered and could be on the end of a hammering which would be even tougher to take.

  114. Hopefully we have Donegal away in the league next year . Something to look forward to. Nice weekend away. Kerry game will be at home

  115. As a person who loves gaelic and would love to see mayo lift Sam,even though not a mayo person originally, I think as a whole the system in mayo is not focused enough on youth development and bringing true football skills I.e. training with the ball first,,fitness later to the cause. Mayo have always had great footballers down though the ages,but the insistence on trusting this running game above natural skill continues to undermine the winning of an ireland. I recently watched an u-16 team do a pre match warm up without any players touching a ball. All running no football’s here is were the issues start that lead to yesterday’s disappointment…natural players are always comfortable on the ball,,but lately this is not happening in mayo and a nervousness in position is becoming apparent..its a whole structural and cultural redevelopment of underage that is needed for mayo to achieve the ultimate,,,,that is in reality takes ten years to nuture…..ask the dubs,Tyrone,armagh,donegal and kerry who all when back to the schools and clubs,,to enforce the basic skills of the gaa to find success in later years….again mayo absolutely have the players in this county to do it,,but through development and a structural and cultural mindset it will happen….finger pointing and a blame culture do nothing to help…I wish mayo and their proud supporters luck in there efforts to reach the promised land.

  116. Charlestown beat Breaffy today.
    Towey played and scored 1-07. AOS and Ruane also played. I think Aido started and Matty came on as sub.
    I thought Towey should have been on at the start of extra time last night if not earlier.

  117. I was in Pearse Park earlier. Good crowd from Mayo, supported the lads well. The best team won unfortunately for us. The difference in size was very noticeable. Armagh had lads all over the field that were very well built.I was shocked that we didn’t try and change things for last 20 minutes. We were behind but persisted on leaving two extra backs in our back line..our forwards had no support to give a pass to on an over lap or anything like that. There are a few fine players on that minor team.Hope we can keep them together. Also a bit of S&C required. Koby Mc Donnell is a lovely striker
    Of a dead ball, both from the ground and from the hand.Hard luck this evening lads. But hopefully there will be other better days for ye.

  118. And fair play to Aido, towey and mattie ruanne playing today for their clubs says alot about their mentality.

    For those questioning I see not here but about the O Connor brothers maybe going this year no chance they will both still be here next year definetly diarmuid o Connor will be anyway.

    Really hope Aido stays on to I think he will.

  119. I said that at the end of normal time Dave Johnson . Even if we won it in extra time, we were goosed for next week. Everyone here saying that Armagh minors were all so much bigger and stronger than us this evening. I was at the game and indeed some were , but not all. Their number 13 , Fionn Toale looked like a child, but could he move and play football.

  120. Willie Joe,

    Huge thanks for the work you do on a brilliant forum all year long.

    Thankless at times no doubt.

    If i could pay Mayo one complement,

    Only one team out of 32 will win Sam.. yet the whole country is invested/interested in Mayo.

    I don’t mean to sound patronising but we are not in Gaza.
    It’s football and Mayo will go again next year.


  121. GloryDays – definitely gets easier as you get older. 2021 broke the last straw for many. Our following is nowhere near what it was before that final and we’ve seen how poor that Tyrone team is ever since.

    I’m in my mid 30s but even I don’t think I’ll ever see it unless drastic action is taken like what the dubs and Limerick did with their structures and coaching.

  122. West Kerry – you’re a good poster here and indeed the rest of the country appears to be obsessed with Mayo. You only have to take a look at the delight, sneering and mocking going on towards Mayo football especially from Galway and Roscommon folk. Not that it gets to me anymore but it’s pretty sad and pathetic.

  123. Yew_tree

    What was that old say that’s there’s nothing worse than not being talked about ( I’ve probably mangled that )

    If lads are sticking the boot in it means you matter…

    Fxxx em… Let them sneer or whatever… Being invested in something like Mayo or Kerry football is in the soul.

    Mayo have comeback from worse.

  124. Disappointed by yesterday. Frustrated and annoyed about some things.

    My feeling is we had a chance of a semi and are borderline a QF/SF team right now.

    I expect McStay to continue but a freshness in backroom is needed. 2 years of questionable results (and that is being fair) means he must change if he stays or else we will continue to fall short and the crowds will continue to stay at home

  125. @Pittsburgh – you summed it up especially the point about lateral football draining energy from lads. Also a lot of naysayers about Mickey Harte all last week. He knew what was required though when it mattered. I think the old dog was underestimated to our detriment.

    Some decisions from our sideline were really fundamental errors. It is almost as if a lot of tactics are straight off a whiteboard. Managers cannot influnce everything that happens on the field but surely they can manage common sense stuff.

  126. Pod fan , why would you do half a job , the buck stops with the manager not the back room staff or the county board come to that , we need a fresh start , and that means not bringing back anyone who has been in charge or a backroom staff member before.

    We lost because Derry had a game plan and stuck to it , we didn’t have a game plan. Mickey Harte did his homework , yet again we didn’t .

    A good manager and his backroom staff would notice a weakness and challenge it head on , Odhran Lynch’s antics are well known including the goals he concedes through his actions , and yet no attempted to stop him just strolling almost the length of the pitch on several occasions , why ! .

    Aidan O’Shea is often double or triple marked , yet Lachlan Murray was allowed to go anywhere he wanted in the first half and score at will , we knew he was the danger man yet did nothing from the throw in to marshall him out of the game .

    The writing was on the wall for all to see ,ie snatching defeat from the jaws of victory , ie the previous games against Kerry , Galway and Dublin , why wasn’t there a plan even a blanket defence plan in place for the final few minutes if we were ahead , we have to close out games yet year in and year out we never learn from our mistakes , including this time around by taking off an uninjured Aidan O’Shea who had covered every yard of the pitch and would have defended the line with his life

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