U20s lose out in shootout

The final frontier proved to be a bridge too far for the county’s U20s today at Croke Park. In a highly entertaining and free-scoring decider it was a sharper and more clinical Kildare team that deservedly came out on top, winning the inaugural All-Ireland title at this level by 1-18 to 1-16. Congrats to them and commiserations to our lads, who fought bravely right to the end.

It’s not difficult to pin-point why the Lilies came out on top in this decider. There was an enormous contrast in the way the two backlines dealt with the respective attacking threats they faced. Time and again the speedy, dangerous Kildare forwards were allowed to claim possession unchallenged and shoot devoid of any pressure on them. The Lilywhite backs, meanwhile, defended like demons every time we worked the ball forward, making sure to apply maximum pressure on the shooter every single time.

This meant that while their dangermen – in particular MOTM Jimmy Hyland who finished with an eye-watering ten points to his credit – got free rein to express their talents, our main men found themselves shackled. Ryan O’Donoghue did burst clear once in the first half, and bagged a super goal when he did so, but aside from that he was well held. Ross Egan and Tommy Conroy also found it hard to make space and so caused little damage from open play.

For all that, though, we only lost it by two points so in that sense it could be argued that it was Kildare’s greater accuracy and efficiency in front of the posts that saw them home. Our shooting became more and more wayward in the second half and, on top of that, Ross Egan saw an excellent one-on-one goal chance late on blocked by the Kildare ‘keeper.

Kildare signalled their intentions right from the throw-in, bagging their opening point from play with less than a minute on the clock. We settled well after that, though, with a Colm Moran point from play followed by a Ross Egan free edging us a point in front.

But that was the only time we led at Croke Park today. They converted a close-in free at the other end to level and in their next attack found the net. McLoughlin claimed the high ball in, beat his marker and slipped it home. Hyland then added two points inside a minute and already we were in bother in this contest.

Our backline was visibly unsettled, with Johnny Maughan having taken a knock up the field before the goal was scored. The unfortunate Castlebar Mitchels player was withdrawn after that Kildare scoring burst, with Joe Dawson replacing him, as Cathal Horan switched to corner-back.

We steadied the ship a bit after that. Colm Moran, after a surging Tommy Conroy burst, pointed from the right and then Ross Egan tapped over a close-in free when Conor Diskin was rugby-tackled to the floor. The Kildare offender walked on a black card for that offence.

Points were then traded, our riposte to their score a belter from distance by Oisin McLaughlin. A purple patch for Kildare followed, though, as they tacked on four points in as many minutes to lead by seven.

It was frees by Ross Egan that kept us in touch (just about) after this torrid period. But then, out of the blue, Ryan O’Donoghue burst forward at speed, dummied beautifully to evade the cover and bagged the goal. Game on.

But Kildare responded like prospective champions should. For the second time in the half, Hyland pumped over two points inside a minute and the Lilies were back in control once more. We got the gap down to four at the break, another Hyland point bookended by scores from Evan O’Brien and Ross Egan, the latter another free.

We upped the gas after the break, cutting the gap back to two. Conor Diskin got the first, using his power to open up space for the shot, and then Colm Moran, fed by Ryan O’Donoghue, got the next one. At the other end we started better too, forcing the Kildare forwards out wide where their shooting efforts finally started to go a bit off-key.

We had an opportunity to turn the screw some more but Ross Egan’s effort from a difficult free out under the Cusack Stand dropped short. Soon after Hyland opened their second half account and it was the same player who got the next two scores as well, the second from a free.

We weren’t helping ourselves with some wild shooting. Twice HawkEye was called to adjudicate on shots into the Hill end and twice the verdict was close but no cigar. Jordan Flynn also shot narrowly wide after a powerful burst forward.

We had made a few switches by then. Evan O’Brien was replaced soon after the break by John Gallagher, Liam Hughes came on for Tommy Conroy and Stephen McGreal was introduced in place of Colm Moran. Before the end Sean Og Tigue would also make a brief appearance, when he replaced the banished Cathal Horan, who picked up a black card.

Down the closing stretch we made a valiant effort to haul the fat from the fire. How might the game have finished had Ross Egan buried that goal chance? Impossible to tell, of course, but full marks to the Kildare ‘keeper for the way he protected his goal as the Aghamore player bore down on the target.

Patrick O’Malley boomed over the resultant ’45 and then when Ross Egan pointed – after what looked like a fairly charitable free awarded to us – the gap was down to two. Time was almost up but the game’s momentum was now all with us.

Then Jordan Flynn had his moment of madness. He was penalised for some midfield grappling following Kildare’s restart and was incadescent at the ref’s decision to ping him. I didn’t see what happened next but whatever it was the Crossmolina player got a straight red for his trouble. The red mist had now come down properly and he gave ref Niall Cullen – who, it has to be said, was excellent throughout today – a hefty shove in the chest before departing the field.

It’s impossible to defend what Jordan did. But he’s a young lad and he’ll know himself how out of line he was so there’s no need to fry him for it either, as some Mayo “fans” were very quick to do on social media straight after. Let he who is without sin and all that. Except, of course, on Twitter.

Hyland applied the coup de grace after the sending-off, closing out their total with his tenth score of the day. I read after the game (hat tip to @dontfoul) that there was enormous pressure to call Hyland, and a few others, up to the seniors after the Carlow debacle but the temptation was resisted. Kerry brought up their starlets to the senior ranks and have ended their year – at both U20 and senior levels – with nothing, whereas Kildare are now All-Ireland U20 champions. Fair play to them.

We got the game’s final two scores, both from Ryan O’Donoghue. The second one was from a 14 yard-free, with almost the entire Kildare team massed on their goal-line. The Belmullet player had no option but to go for goal but his shot cannoned off a white shirt and over and Kildare were the winners.

We can have no complaints about the result. Kildare were strong ante-post favourites and you’d have to say they largely justified that tag today. We knew coming into the final that our backline was a bit loose and that was always going to leave us in trouble against the quality forwards Kildare had in their ranks.

What was encouraging, though, was how the lads never gave up and with a small bit more composure in front of the posts in the second half they might just have robbed it. Robbery it would have been but there would have been no complaints had we managed to pull it off.

So it’s hard luck to Mike Solan and his young charges. Their run to the decider was a bright spot for the county on an otherwise depressing summer for us and the positive showing by a number of these players provides more than a little proof that the future remains bright for the county. Up Mayo.

Mayo: Patrick O’Malley (0-1, ’45); Johnny Maughan, Brian O’Malley, John Cunnane; Paul Lambert, Cathal Horan, Oisin McLaughlin (0-1); Evan O’Brien (0-1), Jordan Flynn; Nathan Moran, Ryan O’Donoghue (1-2, one free), Tommy Conroy; Conor Diskin (0-1), Ross Egan (0-7, frees), Colm Moran (0-3). Subs: Joe Dawson for Maughan, John Gallagher for O’Brien, Matthew Macken for Conroy, Stephen McGreal for Moran, Sean Og Tigue for Horan (black card).

PS: Thanks to the Brother for the photo from Croke Park. I wasn’t there but got to see all the action live on TV.

PPS: Best of luck to the Ireland ladies hockey team in their World Cup final that’s about to get underway now.

83 thoughts on “U20s lose out in shootout

  1. Thanks, Mayomessi – I’ll correct that now. I thought they said on TV it was Macken but I see now from Colm Gannon’s match report for The 42 that it was Liam Hughes.

  2. Hard luck to player’s and management .. Good crowd from Mayo . Kildare were the better team

  3. Hard luck to Mayo today I thought Kildare were well worth their win. Although a little disappointed I thought it was a lovely free flowing game to watch and I was very impressed with the score taking of our lads under real pressure particularly in the 1st half. Ross Egan was excellent on frees and Ryan O’ Donoghue has a great career ahead of him. Having watched this I’m very optimistic for Mayo football provided we have the right people in place to bring everybody on. Well done to Mike Solan and the lads you’ve done us proud against excellent opponents.

  4. Hard luck, guys. A bastard to lose a final but that’s the chance you take. Some of these players will be on that same pitch down the road with the senior team in an even bigger final, let them take what they can from this loss and keep moving forward. O Donoghue looks like he has a bit to him and will hopefully score a goal like that again when it’s badly needed by Mayo. As for Jordan Flynn, he must have been very frustrated, but Kildare will be happy he couldn’t maintain composure. Others nearer home wouldn t be as happy, Jordan has put up a marker now that he is one that will lash out of provoked. Not good.
    Poor roscommon, shredded, my sympathies to them. No fun in a pasting like that for anyone and even dublin must question this whole fiasco, winning every nearly game with ease all year long. Champions of what exactly? A load of shite.

  5. Really enjoyable football match -great open football, played at pace with good accuracy and skills
    Kildare were the better team and their first half was as good as I have seen from an underage team. Mayo did really well to stay within 2 point sand Egan’s chance could have won it.. Hyland a special talent. Kildare will add at lest 3-4 of these guys straight away next year

    For Mayo – I think we may have to wait a while but
    O’Donaghue – has pace, balance and good skills. Would like to see him as a Corner Fwd next year in seniors.
    Colm Moran was good, needs S&C work but has some of the natural attributes of a cornet Fdw
    Horan was good and is a possible senior of the future, best of the backs today for sure
    McLoughlin was good but, again, for me his pace and skills would be better used running on to ball as a CF. can kick a score though.
    Conroy and Lambert – Not there best days but could have bright futures too

    In terms of the management – hard to cope with Hyland but it was clear from both Dublin and Kerry games that one-to-one on that kids is a waste of time. Possibly should have played a sweeper for first 15mins
    Mayo not that street smart either eg.g. – Egan(who free taking was top class) tried a free right on the touchline which is a 10% shot. No one showed for the short free and it they did he was not looking

  6. Some good performances from the lads and no qualms in losing to that Kildare team who have been very impressive during this championship. Everyone knew of this guy Jimmy Hyland in advance and the obvious threat he posed and for the life of me I cannot understand why the Mayo Management team did nor deploy 2 defenders to him given that he destroyed both Kerry and Dublin in his 2 previous games. I think we were very naive in this but have to say some good performances on the day.

  7. Lads, Jordan was not sent off for a tussle. He was sent off for pushing the ref. And it was a good push as well. He ran 30 meters to do it. After the red, he pushed him again.

    Unacceptable in my view and he will receive a very hefty ban.

  8. Knew I saw two pushes. One was a huge push with both hands. One captured on tv was one handed and not as strong. They missed one on tv as capturing solans shocked reaction. It was bad. I don’t think I’ve ever been actually shocked at a match before. Anyway the lad will know himself and suffer. I feel bad for him.

  9. Disappointing I must say. Kildare much the better team, yet we could have nicked it, or got a draw.

    Full back line woeful. Hyland a real handful for sure, but not a glove laid on him or any of the FF line. As other posters said we weren’t street smart at all, taking forever to figure out the breaking ball options. And, the kicks to the FF were a waste of time as the Kildare ‘keeper, who was also something special, gobbled up everything. Our kick out often got us into trouble as they did against Derry; it didn’t look as if any work had been done on that.

    Kildare were so much harder though – looked a year older all round. Flynn? Well I won’t damn him that’s for sure.

  10. Valuable experience to play in Croke Pk but at the same time another final lost..Thought O Donoghues goal was a dinger..As for Flynn well I watched it back there and Solan’s reaction on the sideline said it all..Ridiculous carry on from him and whatever ban he gets is deserved..Hope he learns from it..

  11. Unacceptable behavior from Jordan we know that. The lad will know that himself, I wouldn’t be too hard on him we have all had a rush of blood to the head and done stupid things on and off the pitch it will pass but you have to get everything spot on to win a final and team
    Discipline have to be perfect too. The only thing that lifted me today is a man in Supermacs on the way home told me Kevin O Neill and Ciaran Mc Donald are coaching the Mayo Under 14’s academy. I’m glad to hear they are involved and the more gifted Mayo footballers we can get coaching Mayo kids the better that’s the only way to ensure our day will come.

  12. A game we didn’t deserve to win but we could have stolen it at the end if Ross Egan had bagged the goal chance. Way too loose at the back. Cleaned out in midfield. Won very little breaking ball. Flynn was a disgrace. Pity he didn’t take out his frustration on the Kildare midfield during the game.
    Might as well give Sam to Dublin for another year. Will be lucky if any of the teams left will get within 10 points of them.
    Roll on next year.

  13. Mayo were sloppy enough in defence and midfield with most of the breaking ball going to Kildare. Maybe a bit naive on the whole.
    Young Flynn was way out of line and he needs good adult presence around him now to see him through this. He must be demented. Still, only two points in it at the end but we can’t have too many complaints.
    I didn’t wait in Croker for the inevitable.

  14. Kildare are a very good team and we did ok to be within 2 of them in the end. They won midfield including most breaking balls and with a full forward line that were totally on top and were very clinical in their finishing we were in trouble from early on. I have to say I was very annoyed with Jordan Flynn today but tonight I actually feel sorry for him. He will probably pay a severe price in terms of suspension but even more importantly he will be deeply disappointed with himself when he reflects on what he did. I hope he can learn from it and eventually put it behind him but it won’t be easy.

  15. The U20’s put on a great display today. They never gave up and even when it seemed that there was no hope they kept on trying. You could ask no more of them. Kildare were worthy winners but they definetly had to earn there victory the honest way. All in all a very good performance by our young players. They could do no more. They will no doubt be disappointed but they are young and time will heal and harden them. They should be very proud of themselves. It looked like it could get embarressing like the DublinVRoscommon match. These young men are made of sterner stuff. The experience will stand to them. At least they were not robbed like Mayo last year and faced with a deafening silence by everyone who witnessed. I get tired of hearing the Tyrone ones going on and on about how we were robbed. The best robbery is the one that is done in clear sight, people simply can’t accept that that it happened. Best to keep that can sealed you’d never know what would crawl out. These young men were beaten by a better team fair and square, despite their best efforts.There is solace in that, small but real

    Moving forward, I hope Stephen stays with us. He is the right man for the job, he has done so much already. He has the makings to finish the job. Anybody who still thinks that Mcstay is our future should just run off and join the circus. We don’t need a Side Show Bob. Regarding the Flynn incident. Yeah he should have shown more composure. He’s young and it could be worse. He could end up modelling for Jack&Jones’ “Everyday Hero” campaign, like the bould Jonny Cooper. So lets keep things in perspective. He didn’t attempt to pull anybodys eyeballs out or attempt to break any young player of the years leg today. Flynn will be fine and is will hopefully play a mighty part in Mayo’s future.

  16. Without reading in detail the comments on Jordon flynn , I get the sentiment.

    Mayo are soft and you’ll never change that till the culture of the county changes.

    If Jordon flynn bursted the referees head open with a headbutt and we won ,you’d still get mayo wans ranting on about how much of a disgrace he was. Yet no Kerry man will ever say what tadgh Kennelly done was wrong. Ye are cooked before ya start.

    Met Lee Keegan in here tonight, a really lovely guy.
    I’m privileged now to be sat with the legend Willie Joe padden, he’s a mate of my uncles . Conversation is riveting . We can always be competitive. Mayo.

    Mayo will always be at the top if managed right .sin e

  17. People would want to lay off Jordan Flynn. There was a 40 man brawl in the Tyrone Armagh, he pushed a ref. Not acceptable but he will got punished and no doubt he feels a lot worse than any of us do. Overall better team won but fair play to the lads for not dropping their heads at any stage. Thought the skills level of the team was very good. That’s what solan can do, he develops players, which is what is required at this stage. These lads will get plenty more chances in the red and green.

  18. On the Flynn sending off, an incident happened about two minutes before that where he tried to get the refs attention- he seemed to be pointing at his eye, but seemed to be ignored. Maybe it was frustration or red mist, but I wonder what the ref said or did, because to me it certainly looked like it provoked Flynn.

  19. Hard luck to the u20’s.

    I’m not condoning behaviour of certain types or picking on the rules but I’m baffled by how rules are implemented.

    Most refs are willing to watch Aidan o’shea get 7 lumps of lard hammered out of him for 75 minutes every match and usually don’t even award him a free. A referee gets pushed and it’s the electric chair straight away for the defendant.

    Like I said I’m not condoning bad behaviour but referees are there to protect players.

    They don’t protect the players, but when it comes to themselves, they’ll be protected alright.

    By all means protect the referee, but don’t treat players like lesser human beings and get rid of the double standard of implementing the law for an infringement on the referee but then allowing free for alls on the likes of Aidan o’shea.

  20. We needed faster restarts sometimes taking a chance if needed.Very naive at the back and beaten at midfield.Never gave up against a superior team and did well to stay in it.Plenty of lads for the future.Enough has been said about what happened at the end but more senior players have cost us major matches with stupidity and this young guys actions didnt have any effect on the outcome.Maybe the best support we can give right now is to let others throw the stones and though not defending anything stand by our guy.

  21. Plenty to be proud of today.. Funny No Tomass o se on SG tonight… mustnt be feeling well

  22. Kildare always seemed to have an edge but I thought Mayo stuck with them valiantly. We went well behind twice and still found a way back into it. If Egan had managed to stick that one-on-one away you never know.

    Lots to be positive about and I think a few of those lads will make the step up in time. Hyland looked like a senior playing against younger lads and that made all the difference.

    The red card didn’t look good and wasn’t in the spirit of what was a very entertaining contest. It was well out of order but he’ll know that better than anyone. So I’d give the kid a break tonight.

  23. I think management got this one really wrong. Anyone who was at the game in carrick coukd see that our full back line was this teams achilles heel. Add into the equation the fact that kildares strongest line was their inside three. Also, kildare veey strong in middle meant an increased likelihood thst theyd have lots of possession in the middle third. The OBVIOUS tactic waa to drop one if not two lads sweeping in front of the full back line. Ok, maybe you could be forgiven for starting with a 1on1 policy but after 10 mins it was clear as day we were being ripped apart. It was crying out for a change and it never happened!?? I cannot figure that out. If it happened in a senior final youd be calling for the managers head. Hopefully solan and his selectors learn from this.

    Kildare had acres of space and should have been 6+ upat HT. But despite our tactical errors we were within touching distance of kildare wuth 5 mins to go. Egan missed a sitter and a few of our forwards kicked poor wides.

    This is one both management and players will regret. Kildare were actually there for the taking and we had the momentum going in to the closing stages but didnt have the bit of class or composure wgen it was required. Sure, had we won it would have been a bit of a steal but a win is a win.


  24. We looked lost and overawed in the first half and Hyland / Kildare took 2 cuts if silage in the first 32 minutes. Damage done.

    To our credit we came steaming back out in the 2nd half and did some cutting of our own. Kildare just were better.

    Bear in mind these are young lads. They tried to drag themselves into it and if the gods aligned we may have snuck it.

    Lots of positives and some lessons to learn.

    Now for a few free months of chasing Mayo (male) football.

    When does the FBD start again?!?!?! Can’t and won’t give up.

    Goodbye 2018, here’s to 2019.

  25. Just checked out that Solan was the manager of Mayo U 21 last year, what I witnessed in Tuam stadium v Galway last year was evident today, Mayo goalie kicking out the ball straight in the direction of Kildare’s big number 8, no knowhow to win the breaking ball in midfield, no cover for the full back line, still the young guys battled hard in the closing stages.
    Rochford still the best tactician, he need not worry too much about his position.

  26. Sean Burke, i dont know how you can compare the tadgh kennelly and jordan flynn incidents. And just to be clear. Im not having a go at the young lad. As everyone has said. He will learn from his mistakes. Kennellys was a cynical hit but it was on a fellow player. Everyone who plays the game from u8s up knows that you cant push a ref. Theyre there to do a job. We may not always agree with them but physical altercations is off limits.

  27. The injury to Johnny Maughan was costly. He should have been taken off immediately but he was left on for a couple of minutes and Hyland took him for 2 points. Having to move Cathal Horan back to corner back probably left us more open in front of the full back line. Although Dawson did okay in fairness.

    I know it’s easy to be wise after the event but Tommy Conroy is a corner forward, not a wing forward. Moran, Egan, Diskin and Conroy all deserved to play, but you need a balance to the team. Wing forwards need to win breaking ball and that’s not Tommy’s game.

  28. Paul Lambert,Cathal Horan,Oisin McLaughlin,Jordan Flynn,Ryan o Donoghue,Colm Moran & Conor Diskin need to be fast tracked into senior setup to get the required S&C.No shame in losing to that excellent Kildare team.

  29. Hard luck to that fine team who showed great heart when at different times it looked like the match was running away from them. I’m not on twitter, facebook or other social media [apart from a few sites like this] because its mostly drivel served up on them. But I can imagine what Jordan Flynn is getting since his sending off. What provoked his meltdown I do not know but I hope he puts it all behind him and learns from the experiance. He has too much talent to allow it be wasted or sidetracked by this incident.
    I often wonder why it is that Mayo defenders tend to be such loose markers. We tend to produce tremendous attackers from defence, Keith, Leeroy, Paddy Durcan etc from the current team and going back in my memory players like Ger Feeney, Henry Gavin etc. Is our failure to mark tightly the price we have to pay for our attacking? It is my misfortune that the club team I support [not in Mayo] has the exact same tendency. Thrilling at times but at other times it’s unbearable.

  30. @Sean Burke, I draw your attention to what you wrote. ‘If Jordan Flynn burst the Referee’s head open with a headbutt, you’d still get Mayo wans getting on about how much of a disgrace he was, but you won’t hear anything about… Ect Ect.. There would be No Refs and No game’s if you could headbutt the Refs…. Wrong is Wrong, and unless you are Under 20 as well, you are worse than the offender Jordan Flynn who hopefully will learn from what he done today, I sincerely hope to see him again in the Green and Red, but he needs to learn
    There is no doubt but he is personally going to rightfully suffer a stiff sanction, regardless of what I say……apart from that incident where the Mayo man was guilty, It was a very sporting and positive game… Winners and today loosers like every day…. Kildare deserved to win to be fair., Congratulations to Kildare, the bane of our GAA life’s in 2018,… 2019, will be different .. The rest of the Mayo team deserved better than what Jordan Flynn shown in the last few minutes of the match!… And all Mayo fans, who as always travelled in numbers,many and indeed most bringing their children and who pride ourselves rightfully on our normal time sportsmanship!

  31. I would echo many of the sentiments here. Kildare the better team although we could easily have won it . Not taking away from Kildare’s superior footballing skills at all I found them , for young fellas , to be quite cynical. They have an arrogance about them regarding their football but clearly the message is seeping down from senior teams around the country that you need to be into the dark arts and all that as well . No need to remind them who writes about this stuff , promoting it , in the Irish Times. I find that sad tbh and “wayward “ and “wrong headed”

    I think there is a danger in minimizing some of the incidents today. I would not at all be surprised if Flynn was the recipient of some “ treatment “ that went unpunished. If indeed it was of the “ eye gouge “variety or the like then that would be disgusting.

    I don’t wish Flynn any ill. As others have said he will feel worse and more apologetic than anyone tonight and for a long time to come.

    However , for a man of his size and strength to grab someone by the throat in a rage ( which looks like what happened right before he pushed the ref ) is , as Sinead37 pointed out , well imo that’s in a place alongside Tadhg Kennelly .

    It was truly shocking!

    That , believe me , could actually be fatal to someone, unintentionally of course .

    I know of what I speak.

    I would say to him to accept your punishment like a man , learn from this , because serious impulse control is required . For life. This can not be written off as nothing . This was something very serious and anyone who thinks otherwise is simply in denial .

    I would say to him to never ever grab someone by the throat.That should be very basic.

    Being eye gouged does not count .

    Reach out to a professional and get help with impulse control. All this happened sober ! A sobering thought in and of itself .

    And please resist the temptation to scold me and say he’s a super nice guy. Or that it was a once off. Or that he was provoked.All that may well be true. But it’s also irrelevant to my point.

  32. We learned a few things from this match:
    1. Solan is about 5 years away from being an intercounty senior manager. He needs to go away and manage a senior club team first before being spoken about in terms of the Mayo senior job. Lord almighty that was a poor sideline performance yesterday. The dogs on the street knew Hyland was the dangerman before the game yet we left him one on one the entire match to pilfer ten points?
    Anyone who suggests we replace rochford with solan in 2019 – I’m sorry I can’t take you seriously.
    2. Ryan o donaghue, Oisin McLaughlin, Diskin, and maybe Horan were all I saw putting their hands up for senior run outs in the near future, but we are probably taking 2020 onwards for these guys to make an impact. They’d want to make a mark on the 2018 club championship first.
    3. Regarding Flynn, it’s well known to anyone with a passing interest in Mayo club football that Flynn is a bit of a loose cannon with a very short fuse. If he can’t control himself like that on the field against a few kids from Kildare, how could he be relied upon in a huge championship game against the likes of Dublin or Tyrone with hardened veterans winding him up?
    4. Horans performance got me thinking – he was getting roasted early on, albeit isolated in one on ones with oceans of space, like the other backs, but as the game went on he showed great heart and character, unlike some of the other players. By the end his performance level had bypassed all other Mayo players and he was out best player in the second half. Coming from a small junior club, maybe he was showing some untapped potential relative to some of the others that hasn’t been revealed before because he’s not in with a big club maximising his ability since he was 10 years old??
    I think there is hidden talent Amongst our smaller clubs that has been ignored for years and we need to tap into it more as a county…
    5. Oisin McLaughlin has some boot on him for a young lad. He looks like a fella that could kick long range points with ease, something rare enough in modern players.
    6. Diskin is a tank of a man, and therefore could be given a shot at senior in spring. Still a little raw on the ball though and at the moment reminds me of Conor o Shea a bit.
    7. Ross Egan would want to get a bit cuter. 3 minutes left, us trailing by 4 points and he takes 45 seconds of fluting around and shaping to kick a 20 yard free in front of goals?
    Jesus lad get it kicked over and get on with the bloody game quickly.
    7. We could definitely have snatched an underserved win as Kildare were kinda shitting themselves late on, but hadn’t the composure to see it through.

    Overall a useful exercise and some encouraging signs for the future.

  33. The lack of a sweeper was suggested by Billie Joe Padden as a development exercise. The defenders know they have to man up and learn to defend their man one on one.
    We could have won playing a sweeper, but then we would change our overall style more to a defend and counter style.
    What is needed for the final year u20s is from 1-2 years at junior u23. It could be u23 before they are matchday 26 ready for senior.
    If you look raw at u20, it’s a minimum of two full years preparation to be a senior ready sub.

  34. That’s a fair enough point JP. We could have won the game with a sweeper but in the overall big picture, would it have made a difference to our future development of seniors?
    Colm Moran showed some good potential too as a corner forward. However none of these lads will be taking the place of the Jason Doherty’s and Cillians of this world in 2019, amd probably 2020 either. It’s people like Brian Reape and Fergal Boland I’d be hoping might step up to that level in 2019. The u23 junior aide is not a bad idea either, current random setup of Mayo junior players doesn’t really add much to our senior setup. Remember Colm Boyle played Mayo junior in 2011 aged 25, an unknown outside Mayo, and went on to be a triple all star and one of the best wing backs of the modern era.

  35. Criticising Mayo player Jordon Flynn for his action leading to his red card is so hypocritical. Mayo supporters on this forum have been obsessed with poor refeering decisions over recent years. However in true GAA style nobody is expected to do anything about it – so thank you Mr Flynn for shining a light, as its unacceptable that referees can do what they want with impunity. Lets hope it becomes a ‘Miller /Newbridge’ event, where closing ranks doesnt cut it anymore. Mr Flynn, by his action, has spoken for me and hopefully for put-upon Mayo teams.of the past decade.

  36. Totally agree with you there JP. It’s a point a lot of people are missing. Solan is there to develop players not systems. Silverware would be nice but at this age it’s definatey more about the journey than the destinations

  37. Diskin is a much better footballer than Conor O’Shea.Every thing that happened good for Mayo from came through Diskin and Ryan O’Donoghue.
    I think some posters are been very harsh on potential players for 2019 Senior panel.You have to remember our forwards were living of scraps yesterday and we still put up a big scoreline, so I would still be hopeful of players getting into next years panel.But some are going to have to hit the weights room hard and bulk up this winter .Kildare seemed bigger than us all over the field yesterday.Colm Moran, Oisin McLaughlin and Ryan O’Donogue could do with another 5 to 10 kgs of lean mass.

  38. I think yesterday’s result will take a lot of pressure off Stephen Rochford while the lads did well yesterday there is no quick fix or magic solution. We will probably have to go with most of the tried and trusted again next year to stay competitive with the gradual introduction of one or two younger lads like last year.

  39. A tough learning curve for Brian O Malley. Not a full back and played there out of necessity. Came up against 2 outstanding full forwards.
    Clubs primarily have to look after these guys for next couple of seasons imo. Fortunately for Brian and Westport lads, they are returning to Horan and the confidence building will start immediately. Similar situation with other clubs.
    Solan doing a good job but he too is in early stages of management career. Will have learnt a lot and should be retained at u20

  40. Yesterday was a brillant game of football. We had no one to mark Hyland I mean wat a talented lad he is. Kildare the better team by 6/7 points imo. But some poor shooting on dere part and Mayo’s courage and nvr say die attitude kept us in the game. And could have won it if we stuck the goal. They have been a joy to watch and the whole championship was great.
    But people thinking we will c a host of these lads in a panel nxt year or even 2 years are in dream land. Dere is only 1 to me has the talent and strength to maybe have a craic nxt year is Conor Diskin. He has been playing very well for his club Claremorris this year and has given a few full backs a run round. He is still very raw.
    Don’t get me wrong dere are several seriously talented lads in this group just physically not near the level required. Which is why the Jnr team changing to a U23 team is vital for these lads.
    Again well done to da team a very enjoyable year following them.

  41. I like to see fire in a young fella on the pitch, but under good guidance at club and county level Jordan Flynn will learn.
    After trying to sit through the public horror show served up by the Ros v Dubs match yesterday, I needed some therapy when we got back to the house.
    I had to look back and imagine how Senior County gaelic football was once competitive, going into youtube I came across the drawn final of 2016, seems so far away now but it restored my interest in the game.
    I cant see how anybody gets enjoyment or a kick from any team in any sport getting hammered , anybody that has played the game should know this. The few Ros supporters around me in the Lower Cusack / Davin stand were shouting for Mayo u20’s.

  42. Evan O’Brien, Nathan Moran and Tommy Conroy are under age next year. Oisin Mullin will be back and I think nearly all the subs that came on are still underage.

  43. Some real wall flowers following football now judging by the reaction to Flynn’s behavior. It’s football, it’s a mans game, sometimes tempers flair. There’s plenty of room on the hockey bandwagon if your squeamish. Kildare were the stronger team but we could have won it bar some poor decisions infront of goals. Their keeper was a sight to behold, pinging balls into our 45 from the his kick out. Brilliant game of football yesterday and U20/U21 shows us how football should be played. No defensive rubbish, if we don’t do something to limit hand passing then our game will die a death. As an aside, I see Cormac Reilly’s time out has ended, he was in action yesterday at the Ross/Dublin game.

  44. I know Jordan flynn since he was a child and can tell you that he is a good person only a rush of blood to the head he wil not be happy with him self and I know he will not do anything like that again we all do things that we are ashamed of like he is now let’s get behind him and move on he will probably get a big ban for it he won’t be the first or the last it’s going on at under age games too not only yesterday would not be as much talk about it if it was not on TV no body could make him feel as bad as he does today so don’t kick a man when he is down help him back up behind you Jordan all the way noel.

  45. Good stuff there Larry Duff. I would add Lambert to the list; think he has real class. Didn’t all happen for him yesterday, but he battled. Conroy and Colm Moran too. They all have pace and that’s crucial.

    Can’t go with the point of just developing players. These are competitions to be won and they can’t be won often enough. We had an U21 winning manager, and Mayo have been much to the fore in the last 7 years, Kildare nowhere. Yet, Kildare had all the cuteness of a Kerry or Dublin yesterday and we had all the naiveté of Mayo teams in the past. That’s what particularly frustrated me. Looking around the field from the Hogan Stand a lot of the players were aimless much of the time, didn’t look for the ball and turned it over – without assistance from Kildare far too often.

    All in all, a frustrating end to a frustrating season.

  46. The Jordan Flynn issue should be left to his club, county management and the player himself.

  47. Well done to the Mayo team and management for the football they produced and the fighting spirit they produced. Going down to a better team is no failure as long as you leave it all on the pitch. Their goalie is ready for SR team now, in my opinion and Flynn is not far behind him. I believe we are in a great place to have Mike Solan with the U20 team. Looking forward to getting the good news from Stephen soon.

  48. Lehidin, I saw that myself. For 3 kick outs in a row Flynn was nudged in the back, very cutely, that meant he was under the ball and Kildare won 2 marks behind him from that. He gestured to the ref but the ref ignored him. Then he gets caught doing exactly the same thing and conceeds a free. His fuse was lit then. Also, the lad that he grabbed by the throat obviously said something as Flynns reaction was very responsive. His head was gone by then regardless. I hope he gets the protection and support he needs from both his club and county management and teammates. I know one thing, if I was heading out the dressing room in a match where things were going to be tough, Jordan Flynn (and I don’t know the lad) is the one player I’d want with me. What he did was wrong and he will be rightly punished. But no one died and is it any worse than Connolly throttling O’Connor by his throat as he lay prone on the pitch? Any worse than a 20 man brawl in the Armagh Derry game? Any worse than McMahon eye gouging someone?
    To the snowflakes who were offended by it, grow up and don’t be so naive. Even at U20 this is an elite, highly competitive, pressurised sport. If you don’t like it, switch on the golf.
    To all the new “supporters” who bravely took to social media to brand Flynn a thug, scumbag and knacker! I say it’s amazing they are such judges as most of those “experts” never heard of the lad 2 weeks ago. I say be man enough to say it to the lads face, not behind the safety of a keyboard and a faceless anonymous profile.
    Re yesterdays game, to be fair the better team won but by God did we hang in there and give them a battle. At one stage we were 6 down and in real trouble but we fought our way back. We should have gone short with our kick outs sooner than we did but, 2 off the upright, a Hawk Eye Nil and a good save from their keeper proved that we were not that far off them.
    Also, to the 2 Rossies in the Hill with their flag, I salute ye. Brave men.

  49. Pebblesmeller, that’s the best summation of the Flynn incident I’ve heard yet. Well put.
    He’s a young lad, give him a break. He made a mistake, as we all do. Support the lad to ensure that nothing like it happens again.
    Some of the pontificating I’ve heard from various people about the incident has been embarrassing.

    Hard luck to the U20’s yesterday, but a great battling performance against a top quality side.
    Some definite potential in that Mayo team, we need to ensure they are developed correctly over the next few years.

  50. I admire young Flynn , I don’t know him but I would love if we had 20 more like playing for Mayo , if we had we would have won some of them tight finals . He was not going to be bullied or intimidated by other players or poor Refereeing decision . He did broke a rule of the game and got caught . not the first and wont be the last , get him ready for the Senior Team and he will have many a great day in the Green and Red.

  51. Saw Jordan Flynn for first time last year in a couple of club championship games. Couldn’t believe he was only ~19 at the time. Huge physicality, work rate and a really tough tackler. Believe me he’d be among the first group of players from that team that I’d bring if I were Rochford. He was one of the few players yesterday that played with intensity throughout. We need players of his physical strength, fielding ability and passion for the jersey in our Senior team.

  52. That’s all well and good pebbles but the entire country now knows he has a very short fuse and if provoked, will more than likely react. Aggression is good, but controlled aggression is the key. Trying to choke out a player in full view of the ref, maybe not the best idea. As we know all too well at senior level in this county. Having 15 men on the field at all times is crucial. If Donie Vaughan hadnt taken the law into his own hands aginst Dublin last september. Theres a good chance we’d be the reigning all ireland champions. If Diarmuid o conor didnt lash out with an elbow aginst Galway. This year could have turned out very differently also. The people on here slating him are wrong. But the lads on here giving him some sort of hero status for his actions need to cop on as well.

  53. People abusing Flynn on Twitter etc. are wrong but I don’t know you can praise him for not being “bullied”. There has been an unfortunate trend of indiscipline with Mayo teams in 2017 and 2018.

    Red cards are arguably the reason we lost to Galway the last 2 years and the AI final to Dublin. Rather than praising Flynn, he needs to know that is not acceptable. I hope he comes back from this stronger as he has lots of potential.

  54. Was coming home from supremacs today and was very disappointed but glad too hear that the likes of ciaran McDonald is training the under 14 team and they have a good bunch of young lads who i expect too push out too be a terrific team in the future

  55. Some serious talent coming up the ranks at under 14 level they didn’t give the great dublin a sniff and I was coming down from Dublin and had a great chat with someone about mayos development and they said that McDonald and some other big names are managing them which only bodes well for the future..opinions?

  56. Under 14 development team is looking strong and was glad too here from a man in supremacs that Ciaran McDonald is managing the team and they gave the dubs a hiding the future is bright..opinions?

  57. I hate to burst your bubble but the Galway under 14 … Galway have three teams beat mayo well

    Galway underage is booming

    They hace a young annaghdiwn lad who is s superstar unnthr making and another young lad who has achill connections

    Two serious players

  58. Snowflakes? Are we starting to descend into groupthink here? I wouldn’t pay any heed to the usual outraged clowns on Twitter. Nobody died or got hurt. But not only were we left a man down, a vital minute was wasted at a crucial point in the game. That to me is what is indefensible. It’s not enough to be brave and fearless, at this level you have to be smart and channel the anger in a controlled fashion. The young fella will learn and no doubt will have many good days in the green and red. Underage football by its very nature is a steep-learning curve as it goes by in a flash. Regardless of Jordan’s actions, we were three points down and chasing the game going into injury time. The damage was done in the first ten minutes when Kildare hit us for 1-3. That left too big of a mountain to climb. Couple that with our problems in midfield and defence and it’s a wonder we got as close as we did in the end. And still if Egan’s goal had gone in we could have snatched a draw. Sickening for the lads as they put in a trojan effort throughout the entire match but it just wasn’t meant to be. Whatever happens with management I just hope a number of the lads are brought into the senior fold next year and given proper game-time in the league. The investment has been long overdue and needs to be made.

  59. Swahili,
    Comparing Jordan Flynn’s action yesterday with Tadgh Kennelly’s assault on Nicholas Murphy is utter nonsense, sheer utter nonsense. Flynn’s action was not a deliberate, calculated action as was Kennelly’s. Flynn’s action was an instinctive reaction to something which happened on the field. Kennelly’s action was deliberate and planned , to take an opponent out of the game, as the throw in had just taken place and there was no time for any provocation. What happened yesterday to cause Jordan Flynn to react as he did I do not know. I do not approve of his reaction but I do understand why it might have happened. He needs to learn thaat there are other ways of dealing wwth those who use foul and unfair tactics and I hope he does.

  60. “Could have snatched a draw”

    Kildare definitely got into people’s head if we didn’t believe we could come back from 4 down at half time.

    Re: Jordan Flynn incident.

    It must be said from a football point of view, the decision to award the free to Kildare was horrendous.

    From a human point of view, Flynns reaction was the same.

    What is the right thing in these circumstances? Let the head drop and succum to a particular narrative?

    Could lessons be learned from the way Rugby is officiated?

  61. Regarding the Flynn incident he was clearly being sledges. Which is a black card offence.
    No point having a rule if it is never enforced.
    Of course he shouldn’t react as we end up a point down but you can imagine what was said to make him do that

  62. Mitchellsman you have to start somewhere and Under 14’s is a good a place as any. I’d rather be investing in youth than parachuting guys in from Australia hoping for miracles.

  63. Is it true Steven Rochford is staying on? If so any word on new backroom team willie Joe

  64. Good summation of yesterdays performance from “Larry Duff
    Nieve from Mayo sideline to leave Hyland one on one with a Mayo defender, with loads of space in front of him, Sweeper was obviously required in this instance, and no change of plan was implemented
    No sign of midfield plan, often Mayo two going up and ball broken mostly to Kildare player
    Backs often standing up when goalie looking for options thus forcing long kick outs to struggling midfield.
    Plucky performance but lacking smarts on the line and on the field. Management and most of players are a long way off the big step up to senior

  65. True grit from Jordan and showed his passion for Mayo and know he will learn from this and not let it affect his passion to win, Kildare were very cynical all day and deserved to win but our lads were very naive .Solan not ready to fill Rochfords shoes for a few years yet. Rochford will get us over the line as best man out there.

  66. A note on Jordan Flynn. I’ve just watched the match back on TG4 and realised if you weren’t at the game you didn’t actually see the whole incident. TG4 didn’t show it. The ref whistled for a free and Flynn very aggressively and forcefully pushed him with both hands. That’s what Solan is reacting to on TV. Then you get to see what happened next, with Flynn chokeholding one lad before getting his red and then giving the ref another shove despite being escorted off the field by Mickey Conroy. But TG4 does not show the initial shove. I get the impression that a lot of people think he only shoved the ref AFTER he got sent off. Far from it. The first shove was extremely aggressive and if he doesn’t get a long ban for it there’s something very wrong.

  67. Kildare deserved their win ,mayo could never get ahead ,great achievement to win Connaught championship as underdogs,just so wondering what happened Donovan Cosgrave and colm Murphy from the 2016 minor team, two players I seen playing minor but not made under 20 team this year,also Cathal Horan(great prospect) would probably never made team if osion million wasn’t injured,(any relation to Michael john Mullen from kilmaine.

  68. Mayo beat Leitrim,Roscommon to win Connacht and weren’t underdogs in either game. Mayo were underdogs to win Sundays final and while 2nd best Mayo gave it their best shot and were carried out on their shields.

  69. Re Hugo’s comment above, Not a good idea to judge in haste, as mostly there is a trigger for an aggressive human reaction.
    I was at the game and it looked like the player was subjected to some treatment before the incident, which was not dealt with by the referee, and which may have triggered the players inexcusable reaction.
    There is a well established and fair procedure in the GAA which will give due consideration to all the relevant facts of the matter, and the opinion of amateur judges is of little or no consequence in this regard, thankfully.

  70. Firstly congrats to Mayo and no disgrace to lose to a very good Kildare team.Hopefully many of that young squad will progress to the senior panel over the next few years,as there is some real talent there. I am disappointed because I feel we could have won.The big difference for me was Kildare backs put our forwards under pressure and competed strongly for every ball,whereas we did not,as our backs stood off and seemed happy to let the Kildare forwards win possession.As a result Kildare got their scores much easier. Why is it that almost all Mayo defenders do not seem to show the same intensity as most other top teams.The seniors have the same problem and stand off and shadow rather than pressure. We are too easy to score against-. Also,I think we should have played a sweeper in front of the full back line to curb the obvious danger posed by Hyland. I also thought Kildare committed a lot of cynical fouls to stop our moves developing and if our opponents are allowed get away with,we need to wise up and do the same. Finally the Flynn red card,the ref had no option but to send him off and he was stupid,but a lot of the comments were way over the top and I strongly suspect he was provoked.

  71. Exactly Hego! I was at the match. And the tv didn’t pick up what happened directly before he tried to choke Kildare man. He grabbed the ref by the collars & pushed him aggressively. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing to be honest. Then to go again and push the ref again. It doesn’t matter what sledging he got. Most of the top players get it. You cannot react. And if you do well you better be ready to take your medicine.

  72. Outside The Pale, by “Hugo” I presume you’re referring to me with your condescending post. “Judge in haste” and an “aggressive human reaction”? I saw it live from 20-30 metres away, watched it back on television 36 hours later, and then offered my opinion which included zero aggression or criticism of the youngfella. “As for the opinion of amateur judges is of little or no consequence in this regard, thankfully.” The GAA are amateur judges and your assessment that there is a well-established “fair procedure” in place says quite something about how seriously your views should be taken.

  73. Up the dubs
    Cathal Horan started both the Leitrim and Roscommon games at wing back prior to Oisin Mullen’s injury and had performed well all year. He also started on the minor team you mentioned from two years ago until he broke his jaw in a challenge match and was ruled out of the Kildare game.

  74. Ocides1, I’ve been in work flat-out since the match so haven’t been on social media much. I got in last night and it kind of dawned on me that most people don’t seem to realise the full extent of what happened. Only when I watched back I realised perhaps why. Solan’s reaction (and a lad in the crowd behind putting his head in his hands, which is exactly what I did) says everything. Just disbelief. Never seen anything that bad out of a Mayo player. Flynn looks a cracking footballer, did well on Sunday and should be welcomed back into the team with open arms in good time. I can’t wait to see how good he can be in his senior career. But his actions were outrageous and he should have the book thrown at him.

  75. On the Jordan Flynn thing – it’s been done to death at this stage but Hego’s synopsis is indeed what occurred. He did grab the ref by the collars, quite agressively which wasn’t shown on the Camera.
    The free given to Kildare that seemed to have set him off was indeed soft but a free nonetheless. I think Pebbles has it right when he says it was something that was being done to Jordan all day long and no frees in return.
    That does not excuse his reaction one Iota, you simply can’t lay a hand on an official and he did so twice quite agressively. He’ll rightly serve a minimum of a 12 week ban, quite possibly longer and will have to enjoy the games of his Club (and quite possibly a few county games) from the same types of seating as the majority of the rest of us do for a while. He’s a talented lad and with the appropriate guidance he’ll learn from it, get over it like the rest of us and he’ll feature in the Senior squad at some point in the future.

    As for the game itself – Hyland is some player, who made hay all day. Our backs were simply too loose marking their men- Kildare lads had acres to themselves and we were second best in a lot of areas – our kickouts were ponderous and lacked accuracy while their Keeper was very good in both areas. To be fair we didn’t appear to be making space and showing for the kickouts either which didn’t help our own Keeper. We gave ourselves a mountain to climb and at one point we were 7 behind if I recall correctly. We certainly appeared to be reeling things in towards the end but it was too little too late. Fair play to the lads for the valiant effort and their performances this year.

  76. IMO the failure to deal with a fairly good Kildare full forward line was a problem. Throughout the day it was also evident that the Mayo players seemed to be playing as individuals. All day long Tommy Conroy made himself available for ball on the wing but the players in possession decided to cut in rather than pass to Conroy who had the pace to beat the Kildare backs by running on the outside. I may be wrong but it seemed to me that certain players passed to certain players and the wrong options were taken on numerous occasions. Mayo also insisted on playing solely through the full forward which gave the Kildare backs ample opportunity to set up their defence. Mayo had the same opportunity to defend against the Kildare 13 but decided not to bother and watch him score simple point after simple point.

  77. John K the management is doing great stuff with the under 14 team 2 players on the Galway team?so what we have 15 lads well capable of marking them they’re fit they’re fast and they’ve scoring forwards I’m one of the sons dad’s so I be at all the training yes Galway are strong underage but so are we…

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