Thursday’s coverage

Thursday – that’s today, folks, in case any of you are (like myself) starting to become a tad detached from reality at this stage – is usually the last day when it makes any sense to be reading stuff ahead of the big day. After that it all melds into a whole pile of white noise, black noise and all other kinds of noise.

Handy, then, that the Indo should pop up today with some clickbait (which I’m not going to link to as that’s what they want everyone to do) about our “leaked” victorious homecoming plans. Are we, the Indo wonders, “tempting fate a little bit”?

They’re right, you know – we should really leave all that planning and organisation and health and safety stuff until the train has pulled out of Hueston with Sam on board. What were we thinking of at all at all?

Back in the real world, meanwhile, there’s some stuff about the match to plough through so let’s take a quick gallop through what’s out there today.

GAA – feature piece on James Nallen (includes video of the famous goal against Kerry in 1996 – here), interview feature with Stephen Coen (here), piece on our recent rivalry with Dublin (with video, including Padraig Brogan’s screamer from 1985 – how well I remember that one from my vantage point up top in the old Hogan – which is here).

RTÉ – Johnny Magee’s reasoning for why Dublin could beat us well (here), how Bernard Brogan is adjusting to life on the bench (here) and John Casey’s theory on why Diarmuid Connolly got so little game time in the semi (here).

Irish Times – Keith Duggan feature on Stephen Coen (here), Ciaran Murphy on why he thinks we can do it (here) and an analysis piece on Stephen Cluxton’s kick-outs (here).

Irish Examiner – another Stephen Coen piece (here), John Fogarty confirming that we’ll be wearing our traditional colours on Sunday (here), a decision I understand, though part of me would like to see us back in black. The same paper also has a piece by Ed Coughlan, whose views – as a member of James Horan’s back-room team – are always interesting. That one’s here. Finally, there’s a piece by John Fogarty in which ref Eddie Kinsella talks about the job facing Joe McQuillan on Sunday (here).

Irish Independent – I know, I know, their online operation leaves much to be desired but they still have some stuff worth reading and today that includes Bomber Liston’s column (here), a Stephen Coen profile (here) and a surprisingly engaging piece by Martin Breheny about David Clarke and Stephen Cluxton (here).

AIB Sports Blog – Liam McHale on how we can win on Sunday (here).

Don’t Foul – stats-based preview. Essential reading (here).

An Spailpín Fánach – also essential reading, excellent as always (here).

Right, that’s me done with pre-match coverage. Tomorrow thoughts turn towards the team announcements – I might while away a bit of time now, come to think of it, by tapping out a draft post on the starting fifteen we’re sure to name – and, of course, there’s a last pre-match serving of the Mayo News football podcast to come at some stage tomorrow too.

PS: Thanks to Peadar for the illustrations I’ve been using this week, the latest of which is at the top of this post. I’ve another nice one of his lined up for tomorrow too.

23 thoughts on “Thursday’s coverage

  1. Last year I immersed myself to much in article after headline after soundbite after tweet after status update and it drove me mad!

    This year I’m just following this blog (thanks Willie Joe) and I’m much calmer.

    The team, squad and management know what to do. Let Dublin and their stooges across the media believe and write that they are the greatest team ever.

    A few more days to take my seat in Croker.

    Let’s all make sure we are their in time to roar the Mayo lads onto the pitch, we can’t stop roaring until it’s over and we’ve won.

    Mayo X 2.

  2. I really, really like the Don’t Fouls stuff – it is one of the most informative GAA blogs about.

    Reading through the latest post – this quote pops out:

    “Mayo are the walking embodiment of the fact that you can twist stats to back up any argument”.

    Never a truer word said.

  3. Jaden – before hostilities commence between our respective counties on Sunday, can I say how glad I am that you’ve become such a regular contributor here. Fair play to you.

  4. Going by Don’t Foul stats we have nothing to fear. Dublin better in some areas and Mayo in others. Our players need to be switched on especially in taking our chances and avoiding too many low percentage chances. There’s a strong case for Doherty on the long frees especially from his good side. Cillian hasn’t quite the range he had as borne out in the piece. His return from close ones is still excellent.

  5. In an odd way this is one of the best bits – for everyone who’s nervous don’t forget how lucky we are to be seeing the county kick ball in September!

    And don’t be nervous. Mayo 4 Sam!

  6. In an odd way this is one of the best bits – for everyone who’s nervous don’t forget how lucky we are to be seeing the county kick ball in September!

    And don’t be nervous. Mayo 4 Sam

  7. Just to echo Willie Joe,many thanks to Jaden,game changer,Martin the Dub,Cantini,and all the excellent posters,all the best for the rest of the year,apart from Sunday when we need all the luck we can get,up Mayo

  8. Just listened to off the ball on newstalk featuring James Horan. He gave a frightening statistic that Dublin score on average 0.65 points from each kick-out and maintains that pushing up on the kick-outs is the only way to go. However, Mayo keep rewriting their stats and the only one that matters is that by hook or by crook we are ahead on the scoreboard at full time. There is no statistic that measures hunger commitment, will to win and downright obstinacy in the face of adversity. This year there is a wrong to right and the most dangerous team you can face is one hell bent on revenge. #believe #mayo4sam

  9. Agree with you Mayo13BG.
    So important that we are there “before” the team comes out. It sends an important message to the lads.
    We are here, we are ready for the battle too and we are behind you every step of the way, no matter what.
    We know the routine by now. They will be out half an hour before throw in. ie about 3pm.
    Lets lift the roof off Croke Park and roar them on to the pitch.
    Lets the Dubs know we are here and we mean business. grrrrrrrrrrrrrr

  10. As interesting aside Sean Moncrieff interviewed Paddy Prendergast of the 1951 team on newstalk today about the Mayo Curse and his thoughts on Sundays Match.

  11. Thought that interview was very good Liamontherunsimce1951M. Paddy sounded hail and hearty. Was in anthony finnerty’s place in salthill the night before the galway match and paddy was there Njoyin his whiskey.

    He held his opinion when asked did he think mayo would win Sunday. He replied sin sceal eile.

    The columnists are brave people making their predictions on the final. They don’t know how the match will go no more than ourselves and yet they write their articles as if they are the greatest authority on exactly what is going to happen.

    I kind of had forgotten about coen been a good alternative if needed. We have some top quality lads to bring in when the time comes.

    Think we are in great shape. The match is too close now start second guessing.

    With less than 3 days to go It feels like the boulder has started rolling down the hill. No turning back now and the bottom of the hill is 5.15 sunday evening.

    15 v 15. Stand back and let them at it.

  12. I went to the bookies today and asked for odds on RTÉ man of match.

    Was hugely disappointed to be offered only 25/1 on Connor loftus. Was sure I’d get minimum 40/1. Anyway saying something he is that short having not started a game! I just feel he needs to start and put my bet down anyway….then made one I couldn’t resist at the price – Seamie o Shea 66/1. Had to have a sneaky tenner on a man knocking on that door against Kerry….anyway…

    …gamble responsibly! If at all..

  13. I was listening to Ivan Yates on Newstalk coming home from work & he was talking with the sports editor of the Daily Star, two points of interest: firstly he said Dublin are surely looking at David Clarke,s kickout especially out to the left side? Secondly they were saying Dublin need to look at Mayo’s halfbacks charging forward, that is Lee Keegan, Colm Boyle, & Keith Higgins, they said if Dublin blocks & closes down these four players it will be Dublin’s Day?? Well in my opinion David Clarke will vary his Kickouts to pick out midfielder or defender long or short very quickly, I don’t know why they reckoned David was Inclined to kick to the left, don’t understand that bit? Then if they think they will stop Keegan, Boyle & Higgins they are in for a severe lesson on fast hard tough football, there seems to be pundits around every corner, Dublin corners?

  14. WJ, you are a mine of information and the only port of call worth looking to for this week.
    I drove myself last year thinking, planning amd scheming as to what might happen. It all came to nothing only an extreme rage after our 1 point defeat.
    I’m changing tack this year. This year has proven to me that predicting tactics and line ups is impossible and a futile exercise. Rochford and his backroom team have earned our trust and respect to get us back to where we are. Yes, there were some strange decisions and selections which I didn’t agree with (I’m sure it kept Rochford up all night!) but when the shit hit the fan and our backs were to the wall, they got it right and there is no doubt that the lads are playing for the management.
    We just have to trust that management and players will bring their A game to the pitch and that’s all they can do. Whether that will be enough we will have to wait and see.

  15. Mayo will silence them all this time.
    Half the bloody pundits haven’t a breeze.
    Mayo to win by 2/3 points
    I think mayo have evolved and it’s only coming together in the past 2 games.
    Hopefully it will throw Dublin off Kilter
    I was at the league final between Dublin & Kerry this year and I thought it was the best game in 5 years.
    I thought Both teams were at a different level above Mayo.
    Kerry beat Dublin that day
    We’ve since beaten Kerry & Dublin have not had a serious test since end of April.
    Think about that.
    It’s fascinating.
    We bring our A game
    Mix it up a bit between pressing clucktons kick outs and forcing him to kick long and with Aidan in midfield to contest.
    Rotate Aidan between midfield and full forward.
    Really pile the pressure on cluxton like he’s not experienced before.
    Pressure the Dublin play makers on the ball.
    O Callaghan Kilkenny and co.
    Mayo can do it.
    Route 66 will lead to Sam Maguire 2017

  16. Thanks WJ – I get as much out of this place as I put in, maybe more.

    Once you filter some of the more obtuse opinions, there is some great insight to be gleaned from here. Knowing how an opposition team think and act, makes watching a game all the more engaging. So instead of “Jasus, Fenton’s have a right tussle with that other lad”, it’s more like “Parson’s on form today, mad to think he was practically off the panel two years ago”.

    The hostilities are a phoney war, GAA unites us far more than it divides us.

  17. Oh I think Sam will enjoy the night in City West before making the journey west on Monday afternoon to Castlebar & keep Liam Macarthy company over in the West this winter ???????

  18. Technically, I’m correct….

    A replica will go west if you guys win, I don’t think Sam last left Croker since ’88…..

  19. Loved the podcast , love the blog . Loved the stats very interesting indeed and from what I read this Mayo team are only getting better.
    Does anyone else notice the closer we get to the game the more people/pundits are predicting a Mayo win. ( it was the same before the Kerry match)
    Anyway I’m really enjoying the build up.
    PS – I will never buy the indo again .

  20. Thanks WJ for making the time this week go a little quicker with your updates.
    One thing I have noticed this week is that there are no interview pieces with any of the Dublin players, however for Mayo we have seen pieces from Parsons, Coen, Harrison and Diarmuid. Were there none of the Dublin players made available for their press night?

  21. There were plenty of Dublin interviews, Mayoman89, but I only linked to a few of them. From our perspective they’re all a bit samey-samey and they tend to stick rigidly to the script. It’s only selected highlights I choose to roll out here!

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