Vinnies dethroned by slick Corofin

Vinnies Corofin full-time

I was at O’Connor Park in Tullamore – which, by the way, has got to be the finest mid-sized GAA ground in the country – this afternoon, hoping to see my local club St Vincents make it through to a second successive All-Ireland club final. On a day that had more than a hint of spring about it, it was, however, their opponents, Galway and Connacht champions Corofin, who showed far greater invention and purpose. The Westerners weren’t at all flattered by their five-point winning margin, as they dethroned the All-Ireland champions on a 1-14 to 1-9 scoreline.

The Marino lads looked a bit out of sorts right from the off today. Maybe the fact that they didn’t line out with the same fifteen that had started the All-Ireland final last March and every single championship match since then had something to do with it, with Cameron Diamond starting in place of Kevin Bonnie in the backs and his brother Cormac on for midfielder Daithi Murphy. A more pertinent reason, though, for Vinnies’ off-colour demeanour today was surely the busy, probing start their opponents made.

Corofin are an impressive outfit. Well organised and hard working at the back, the middle third full of lads who are hungry to get on the ball and when they do have the ability to aim laser-guided foot-passes of thirty and forty yards into nippy, dangerous forwards, they’re the best club team I’ve seen for a while. On their day – and we’ve enjoyed more than a few good days following them over the last two years – Vinnies can (and have been) pretty lethal themselves but today simply wasn’t their day. Corofin were always on top and the longer the match went on, the more obvious this fact became.

Vincents have had many stars on the long unbeaten run that ended earlier today – the last championship defeat they suffered before today was when Ballymun beat them in the Dublin quarter-final way back in October 2012 – but, such is his outrageous talent and the many commanding performances he’s put in, Diarmuid Connolly has always been the accepted primus inter pares of the side. Today, though, our main man had to play second fiddle to Corofin’s Michael Lundy who was a constant thorn in the side of the defending champions and who was at the heart of Corofin’s most menacing attacks.

The Galway lads could have been out of sight by half-time, only for two penalty awards – both of them correct (with ref Padraig Hughes, by the way, having an excellent day on the whistle) – inside a minute which briefly turned the contest on its head. Corofin, leading by two points at that stage, got their one first, Gary Delaney’s thumper from the spot coming back off the crossbar. Vinnies swept downfield and a despairing foot-block led to the second penalty award, this time for our lads. Mossy Quinn was coolness personified as he stroked it low and firmly into the bottom right corner to give Vinnies the lead for the first time in the game.

Ahead against the run of play, Vinnies stretched their lead to two soon after when the raiding Brendan Egan belted over a rasper from close range. Things were looking good for the champs now but, in a flash, the contest turned against them. Two Vinnies lads went up for the one ball, both missed and it fell kindly to Lundy, who collected it at a hundred miles an hour and tore off towards the town end goal. With our defence in disarray, he offloaded to Martin Farragher, who found the net despite Jarleth Curley’s best efforts at deflecting it out.

Corofin went in two points to the good and it was clear to the Marino faithful at that stage that this was going to be an uphill struggle. Two quick points for the Westerners right after the break confirmed just how tough the challenge facing our lads was and as the half progressed it became ever clearer that this one was going to be a bridge too far for them. Our lads’ movement of the ball – which involved far more use of the hand compared to their opponents – was slow and ponderous and time and again our attacks failed to end in scores. The Galway lads did more than enough to keep the champions at bay and they were deserving winners at the end.

So, that’s the end of the road for Vinnies in this campaign. Although it was, of course, disappointing to see them lose today, those of us who have had the privilege of following them on their long unbeaten run over the past two years can’t have any complaints about the great performances and super memories they’ve given us. I doubt we’ve the last of them at the business end of the club season either.

86 thoughts on “Vinnies dethroned by slick Corofin

  1. Good match report, WJ, but you have neglected to mention the penalty decision against Vincents, when the Corofin defender handled the ball on the line. Now while Corofin were deserving winners, it was still a disgraceful decision, no?

  2. To be honest, I only read about that afterwards and didn’t get a good view of the incident in real time. It could, of course, have had a bearing on the outcome but in the broader scheme of things Corofin were very worthy winners and I’d be surprised if they don’t go on and win the final now too.

  3. Fair enough. It looked a mad decision, but I agree with you – Corofin look classy and should win the All Ireland really. Some serious forwards – Burke and Lundy in particular look great prospects.

  4. I suppose it helps to prove that when teams go out to play football, not concentrating on preventing football being played, refereeing is so much easier. I could only follow the game on radio but I had the impression that Corofin were the better team though most of the match and, missed penalty or no, deserved to win. Re the other two penalties, I have always said that a penalty should be hit low into the corner. Less chance of a miss that way, it won’t come back off the ground like off the crossbar.

  5. I thought the ball bounced at the last second into McGraths hands…..luckily for him!.Lundy destroyed them at the back.

  6. One angle it did look that way opt2. The missed Corofin penalty and Vincents convened penalty moments later could have been a major turning point but Corofin didn’t allow it kept the minds focused and went in at half time with a deserved lead.

    Vincents three main scorers going into the semi final Mossy Quinn,Diarmuid Connolly,Shane Carthy only scored 0-3 from play between them.

  7. Justin Burke would be Corofins penalty taker usually but he didn’t make the starting team.
    Delaney has played a lot of junior soccer at a fairly high level with Athenry so that was probably the thinking behind him taking it.
    I’d imagine Corofins style of play would be suited to the pitch in Croker & I just can’t see them losing the final.
    They are very impressive.have seen all of those players up close over the years in club football in the county & the current side to me is definitely the strongest since the AI win of 98.
    In fact this team is probably a more skilful one than the 98 team.

  8. JP – we should be okay 9-15 alright but our problems will be 1-7 as usual.
    The quality of the defensive players in the Galway squad right now is just not up to scratch unfortunately

  9. Mayo played Clare in senior football challenge this afternoon in kinvara, co galway. Good competitive outing in which mayo won 1-8 to 0-9 pts I think!!
    Mayo team that started: O’Malley, Darren McHugh, g cafferkey, t Cunniffe, ?, c Crowe, d drake, g Duffy, a corduff, c o Shea, j gibbons, n Douglas, e varley, tj Byrne??, d coen. 2nd half saw action for, c Boyle, k Keane, a Dillon, d Kirby, m Sweeney. 1st half some good football from both sides, 2nd half poor where once again mayo had difficulty breaking down Clare who played 13 behind the ball when not in possession. Mayos efforts once again not helped by lots of lateral passing across field, however at least some kick passing was used this week to try and break the blanket! Decent performances from g cafferkey, d drake, mayo no 5, sorry I just didn’t recognise him, g Duffy, corduff, n Douglas, tj Byrne and d coen at times. Boyle, Kirby, and Dillon the pick of the subs in the 2nd half. K o Malley very vocal in goal which was great to see and hear!!

  10. Wonder will be any changes for the monoghan game hope o connor starts instead of ronaldson well done to corofin great win.

  11. Thanks for that Info Inisbofin, who were the scorers for Mayo? Based on that team, it looks like most of the panel have got game time between this match and the first two league games. Maybe Richie Feeney and Brian Gallagher are the only two players that I can think of that have not featured. I wonder are they part of the panel.

  12. I hope and know that all of you will join me in sparing a thought for poor Kieran Donaghy tonight, in his hour of anguish. It must be terrible for him to lose a closely-fought All-Ireland semi-final, especially as he was such a gracious winner in Limerick last August, always playing the game in the right, sporting spirit and never resorting to cynicism.

  13. If he (donaghy)insists on keeping his gob open so much maybe a wasp might do the right thing, he does stretch the patience………………Sleacht Neil worthy victors after falling behind by 2 converted penalties and am glad for Mickey Moran though I’d like Corafin to win the final.
    MaighEo Abu

  14. Fair play Inisboffin – what a site and what a facility that we can have details such as this at 4:20 from a challenge in Kinvara in February, with no programme provided!

    Team looked like it was giving a lot of the panel a run out and good that Clare were using a 13 man defence which judging by the score looks like it was a useful workout rather than a meaningless stroll in which 10 goals are scored.

    And yes, where is the real deal himself? When last I saw him it was in Mullingar and very good he looked that day.

  15. Great result today for Sneil. Delighted. Wat do you think a that kieran donaghyyyyyy!!!!!!!!!!!!!! As sportmanlike as ever today!!!!

  16. Inisbofin looking at that team it looked like a game for those on the extended panel and those returning from injury.

  17. Yea I agree mo2015 I thought it was a game for extended panel and good to see tom Cunniffe back, he had a great battle with podge Collins, a small man but a fine footballer. Gavin Duffy played for about 45 mins, looks v athletic, covers ground well and his football skills looked good. He’s a possibility going forward. Both teams were really up for it which really impressed me for a rainy February afternoon. Both got more out of it than a training session, a very worthwhile challenge I thought.

  18. Any chance that number 5 was Stephen Duffy from Crossmolina? Just thinking he would fit the criteria of unfamiliar face who is a defender who hasnt yet featured in the league. He played corner back against SIT in the fbd but has featured across the backline for Cross and would be equally at home at wing back.

  19. To be fair guys I think Donaghy was singled out for special treatment today, his first marker was giving him continuous grief but he had him beaten up a stick. The number three then was put on him and he had clear instructions to do everything in his power to provoke him. He was shoving his face into his and clearly abusing him from the minute he started to the end,, as Donaghy always says ” I’ll play football all day and I won’t say a word but if some guys opens that can of worms with me ill give it to him”. When the game was over he followed all the Derry players and shook their hands and congratulated them. When you are there you see a little more than those watching on TV, if any of your bloggers were there I think they will confirm what i have said above. Some of their supporters were running up to the Stacks players after the whistle and goading them,, what kind of place breed people like this ?? To be fair most of their supporters were very decent and honourable people.
    I think Corafin should take them but they play typical Nordy defensive shite so they will be difficult to break down. It would be good for the game if the final is won by football and not a system but its on the plate for them now,,

  20. Think yer a little harsh on the winners style Gamechanger.I enjoyed their never-say-die attitude,and their long range point taking was a joy to behold.I’d watch that kind of football all day.

  21. Did anyone see what g Cunningham did with dub hurlers since he took over, this is what i hoped holmes/ Connelly would do. He completely re-jigged the spine of the team and it certainly worked today. Mayo need the same thing, different players at 3, 6,8,9,11,& 14, not necessarily new players but new to those positions. Hopefully g Duffy will be an addition.

  22. Yeah as far as I could see, it was one team playing long balls into a big full-forward, the Kerry lads, while the other team were playing much more football and got some great scores from play, the boys from Derry.

  23. I think from the poll put up here most people called Corofin to win this one but I wouldn’t have guessed the winning margin. From what I saw of them against Ballintubber there’s no doubt they are a classy outfit but they also really do their homework on the opposition. They targeted Ballintubbers best players and also there style of play disrupting the whole functioning of the team. Not only do you need skill, hard work, desire and passion in abundance but you also need intelligence on and off the field. This is a manager we should be keeping an eye on methinks. I can’t see anyone else winnin this either except Corofin. There may be some consolation for the tuber to have been beaten by the eventual winners.. then again there may not.

  24. Supporters running up to the Stacks players after the whistle and goading them? Aw, God love them. Will they be OK? I’m sure that the Mayo supporters who were told by celebrating Kerrymen in the Mackey Stand that they were ‘losers, and always will be’ will have huge sympathy for poor little Kieran and his team-mates. Let us know the address in Tralee. We’ll send down a bouquet.

  25. Commiserations WJ on yesterday’s loss. I was very firstly behind Corofin but there’s no denying what a force Vincent’s have been in club football. I’m thrilled for Stephen and happy Mayo will be represented in Croker on 17th March.

    Happy also for Slaughtneil and Mickey Moran who, as has been said elsewhere, was shabbily treated by Mayo in the past. Gamechanger10, no idea what game you were watching today with your “typical Nordy defensive shite” – their football today was anything but. Those were two of the most enjoyable, open games I’ve seen in months and are a real advertisement for Gaelic games. Forgive me for having zero sympathy for poor auld “Star”, he’s well able to dish it out and isn’t shy to provoke himself.

    Inishbofin, great to get that update from Kinvara, fair play to you.

  26. DavyJ
    I would always class these people as idiots regardless what colours they wear, you have plenty of them in Mayo and we have plenty of our own. The point I am making is that they should be running to their own players to congratulate them not to a down hearted player to geer and goad him,, this is awful stuff and I have never seen it occur with the exception of three or maybe four county’s supporters. Davy, you sound a little like a man I would not enjoy sitting near in either a club or a county game, but I suppose there are always people like that in sporting grounds !!

  27. A very entertaining club semi today and some great long distance scores taken.should be a cracker of a club final.good to see a few new faces getting a run out in challenge today.kirby could be an option this year possibly at 14.more competition for places all over the pitch the better.

  28. Gamechanger10, I’ll certainly agree that goading players on a losing team is out of order. But Donaghy is no shrinking violet, has plenty of previous and believe me, it’s not only people from Mayo that will be delighted to see him on the losing side today. I’d be very surprised if he and his team-mates haven’t heard a lot worse than that from supporters in Kerry club matches, never mind Slaughtneil supporters.

    Oh, and you don’t know me from Adam by the way. So spare me your opinions on what you think I’m like. On this blog we play the ball, not the man.

  29. Good report Innishboffin. I caught the last 20 mins of the match myself so didn’t see who started. Can’t say it was entertaining to be honest.

    I do think that it was Michael Forde from Ballycastle wearing the 14 Jersey though. Otherwise I think you were spot in with the team. I didn’t recognise no 5 myself either.

    Might be a bit of a cull to the panel now though. Pat and Noel have given lots of the lads on the periphery a run today

  30. ‘getting your own house in order first’ springs to mind Gamechanger.
    Sympathising and defending donaghy is more or less condoning his oft time lack of sportsmanship and propensity for gamesmanship.
    We are all entitled to like or loathe without being compared to that ‘littleman’ beside you in the stand…………… didn’t have a mirror with you by any chance ?

  31. JJ, I didn’t have a mirror and i dont need one as I have never abused a supporter or a payer as I have more than an average knowledge of what they go through and what they sacrifice to compete at that level. Ann Marie to be fair that was too much of a generalisation but they clogged mid field and it may not have been so apparent on TV but they did leave space in their half back line that was not exploited by Stacks. I will unreservedly acknowledge that this was an unfair comparison as they did play some great football, but their sledging was not nice to see. I know ye Mayo folk think that Donaghy is the master at this game but he is a reactor and will not start that shit but he will respond in spades, not in keeping with the Chinese whispers up there but absolutely true I guarantee you.

  32. G’way with your Chinese whispers. We have eyes in our heads and TVs in our living rooms!

    Also, DavyJ showed far more class in his reply to you above than you deserved. Remember where you are.

  33. Gamechanger.

    I know its late, and my own writing is not great either but please, a few paragraphs and a few more commas please.

    As for poor owl stacks, let me smpathise with you, The poor owl creaturs, they are misunderstood. Donaghy , he so deserved that a club all ireland. the final would have been one to remember

  34. How about the mayo setup talk to Stephen Rochford about how they kept connolly to 2 points and mossy quinn scoreless from play. It could come in handy later on in the year.

  35. Nice to see Slaughtneil win. I was in Tullamore, and watched other semi at home. I would be hoping we will get a good final on Patricks day, and no Kerry club involved. On K.D, Mayo people forget about him.

  36. Good point well made, achillmanindublin.

    The Galway Renaissance is taking shape too. We’re looking at a far more competitive Connacht for the foreseeable, which can only be a good thing.

  37. Corofin offer further proof that you don’t need marquee forwards to beat the best teams if your collective is good enough. Well done to rochford. It is a bit galling that corofin seem so tactically adept at playing to their strengths while mayo’s last outing was the complete opposite. But early days yet.

  38. It’s amazing how we can all be guilty of just remembering the last match. If we think back to this time last year, James Horan had lost the first two league games and Castlebar under Pat Holmes were on a great run. They had just beaten Dr. Crokes in a cracking game. All the changes and switches he made that day worked. They also beat Corofin and St. Bridgets away. So it just shows that today’s hero can be tomorrow’s villian! It’ll be very interesting to see how the club final will go.

  39. HopeSpringsEternal – Good point there. Some people are getting way too carried away over the Tyrone defeat. Well done to Corofin. I would not agree that they dont have a “marquee” forward though. Lundy and Burke are classy forwards.

  40. Six months on and we’re still harping on about Donaghy. Give it a rest lads, it’s beyond embarrassing at this stage. Gloating because a Galway team won… FFS…

  41. Yes indeed HopeSpringsEternal – I read somewhere that Corofin’s odds are 3/10 for the final. When you consider the hurdles Slaughtneil overcame to win yesterday’s match, you have to wonder if those odds are not a bit disrespectful. Corofin won very well against St. Vincent’s by all accounts, but prevailing in a tight game is always better preparation for a final.

  42. Wow, massively impressed with Corofin on Saturday. The finest club team I’ve seen for a while and the contrast between that slick and determined outfit on Saturday and the nervous and toothless one that were beaten by Castlebar in late 2013 was night and day. Huge credit to Rochford for instilling real drive and belief into the team. They always had the players

    Lundy may well make any inter-county team in the country on this form. Even the Dubs would be glad to have him. His progress has been quite similar to Leeroy’s actually- not much of a look-in with his county at underage (in fact Lundy hasn’t featured in a Galway underage panel since Ted Webb 2006), however now a serious force and one of the form players in the country. Was surprised Walsh got more of the headlines last year- felt Lundy was comfortably Galway’s best player v ourselves and Kerry. Walsh is the classier player, but for sheer workrate, pace and stamina Lundy is the main man for me

    Have to say I’m beginning to get worried about Galway. Add Ian Burke, Martin Farragher and Sice to options like the Lundy, Walsh, P.Sweeney, and Danny Cummins and that is some forward line. They’re not good enough for us yet, but they’re coming. What will ultimately let them down is the gaping holes they leave in defence and they’re far too top heavy to beat a top team like Mayo for now.

    What will most likely beat Mayo is a sheer defensive effort or an all-round finely balanced top starting 15 like Dublin or Kerry. Galway aren’t up to pulling off the former, as they showed with their lackluster display in Castlebar last year, and don’t have the latter yet. But they’re coming

    Finally, a huge thanks to Inisboffin for that report above

  43. Davy J- with the frankly ludicrous (in my honest opinion) gap that takes place between Provincial final- AI semi-AI final of the club championships it places a little less emphasis on how each respective semi was won, as momentum is much less at play. The sooner the ‘calendar year’ club championship comes in- the better!

    Think those odds are about right, it’s very hard to see any weakness in that Corofin side. When you look at their bench from the last day Joe Canney, Justin Burke, Jason Leonard, Aineis Lawless, Padraig Kelly, Conor Cunningham, Alan O’Donovan to name but a few (these would make any team in the country really), it shows what massive strength in depth they have also.

    Goes to show the importance of a good man in charge also. They always had the players, however they have a much needed spring in their step this year, which is ominous for everyone else

    They’ve made the Galway Club Championship a no-contest and who knows Connacht might just follow too. Though it is a bit early to be making such predictions. But for now, yes obvious favourites and I fancy them to get the job done with a fair bit to spare

  44. Why is everyone making the leap from winning a club semi to potential Connaught champions? Corofin have won nothing yet; Mitchels were in the same position last year and beat a team many had tipped to win outright.

    Even a win in club championship guarantees nothing. The Sunday Game panel (for what it’s worth – not much), tipped Galway to win in Salthill in 2013, mainly on the basis of their U21 triumph.

    That’s not to belittle a club title or U21; very worthwhile to win either, or both, but on their own terms.

  45. Corofin holding Connolly wasn’t that much of surprise afterall Connolly only scored 0-1 from play in his last three games against Rhode,portloaise and Garrycastle. Mossy Quinn was held by Fitzgerald who is probably still the best defender in Connacht.

    In the past Alan O’Donovan,Sice were the main scorers for Corofin both mainly free takers. Now they have Ian Burke Lundy two good scores from play that will likely win them the All Ireland.

  46. Ultair, while Donaghy wouldn’t be top of the Christmas card list I’m not especially bitter about his role in our downfall last season. Ultimately, he played a massive role for Kerry on both days; we were unable stop him and that is our problem and our problem alone. All credit to him for that and given his own fall from grace fair play to him for standing up and being counted when Kerry were practically being written off. So just because he played such a big role in our downfall doesn’t make him a villain in my eyes. (Just a pantomime villain.)

    But I’m more than happy to argue the point (and whip out me violin) when those from other jurisdictions are trying to portray him as being unfairly persecuted. That’s not cos of the history – I’d happily argue the same about the likes of Ciaran Whelans or Sean Cavanaghs of this world.

    I am unashamedly glad that a Galway team beat Stacks, because it can only benefit the province, the resulting greater competition will be ultimately helpful to ourselves. There also there is a strong Mayo connection with that Galway team. So no sour grapes there on either count 🙂

    Incidentally and in an unrelated point, I just read that Christopher Bradley who took a shoulder from Donaghy yesterday will miss the club final as a result. It looked like a perfectly legitimate shoulder to me, but it resulted in a broken collarbone for Bradley, so the outcome was similar I guess to Pat Harte who came into contact with Tom Cunniffe in our game v Tyrone 2013. I wonder if shoulders (and the question of S&C) will be the next GAA controversy?

  47. Anne Marie I would agree with you. There will be a whole pile of resistance to any such proposals to take physicality out of the game, reduce fixture overload, improve the game etc.
    GAA players would be built like soccer players if the rules were properly applied. I’d have no issue getting rid of the shoulder n properly police barging n steps

  48. Well said Ultair. Donaghy in his day was a class act. Just because Mayo failed to curb him isn’t his fault. Of course he’s tough but so well he should be. He plays to win. Maybe if we played tougher we’d win too. I’m sick to the the teeth of reading the childish, whinging and whining comments about him. Grow up!!!!

  49. Still moaning about Donaghy is ridiculous at this stage. I admire him because he is a winner. He generally turns up when it matters and is definitely not one to hide. He has the medals to show for it. Good luck to him.

  50. AM, I get what you are saying. Donaghy is by no means an angel and some of the ire directed towards Kerry and the ref after the SF last year from these quarters was well deserved. However, slagging Donaghy off after a loss is at best not very classy and at worst makes us look like very sore losers with a massive chip on our shoulders. We’re better than that. In fairness to Gamechanger he was responding to another comment and if what he is saying about opposition supporters is true then he was well justified in saying it. You always look after your own no matter what.

    We need to move on and the only talking we should be doing on the matter is on the pitch. It’s the only way we’ll avenge all the years of hurt and abuse we’ve taken from various different ‘supporters’.

  51. Its actually strange that sometimes a strong club team can be detrimental to the county team, especially in smaller counties. St. Bridget’s in Roscommon were very strong a few years ago but that didn’t translate into good results for the county team. While the last few years Bridget’s have not been as strong but the Roscommon county team have been getting more competitive. The way the club season is structured its hard to integrate the strong club players into the county team from late March on. Dublin can get away with this but not many other counties can. We seen a club like Eire Og in Carlow, who were very strong in the club championship but it never improved the Senior Carlow team. Likewise in Armagh, Crossmaglen have had much more success than the Armagh county team. So you never know really but in saying that we have won four Connacht titles in a row so we can’t continue to keep winning every year. Still it would be great to win five in a row this year!

  52. Ultair, just to add to your very valid points, I think that people should realize that the more times Cormac Reilly, Limerick, Kieran Donaghy etc. etc. is mentioned the more this fuels the fire in Kerry to come out and shove that down people’s throats. I heard Brian Cody talk about this in an interview, when Clare won the All-Ireland hurling title in 2013. He said that people were talking about a new era in hurling and that it really annoyed him, they used this as major ammunition to get back to the top table again. Shut everyone up in other words. Kerry and Kilkenny thrive on this. Its like after the final last year, everyone was talking about how bad the game was. You can probably be 100% guaranteed that whats driving Kerry on this year, is to get back to the final again and this time produce a great display of football with The Gooch and Tommy Walsh in tow. Thats the way they think down there. I don’t think that we should be providing them with any more ammunition, just beat them on the field of play, thats all we should be concentrating on. Get our own house in order and forget about our neighbours house.

  53. Sean – check Inisboffin’s comment with full team to boot. All part of Willie Joe’s service with on the spot report from Kinvara at 4:20pm or sol

  54. When you go out support your county or your club, I believe you should always show respect for the opposition. Not showing respect is simply letting your self and your club down. When the fat lady sings I always look up at the score board and the story of the play will be displayed there. To loose the game is a minor consequence, to let yourself down is unforgivable.

  55. Now Ultair, while I said I don’t have any sympathy for him in this regard, I didn’t slag him. I have above and indeed last August acknowledged him for the player he is and the massive contribution he made. There are plenty of us here still sore about August, but I’m fully in agreement that I’d far rather we did all our talking on the pitch. And none of it about himself. That we may!

    HopeSprings Eternal, that’s a good point and the calendar probably does play a role. But I think Brigid’s win in 2013 (it was 2013 wasn’t it?) definitely boosted Roscommon if not in terms of a huge contribution to the county team, with a mental lift. The five in a row would be class but I’ve a feeling we’ll have to fight harder for this than we did for the last four. Which will hopefully stand to us … When we meet Tommy and the Gooch in September!!

    I just wish it was Sunday week already. Impatient for this year to progress. Wishing my life away!

  56. PJ McManus, you’re spot on. And I’d add to that point and say that the day you fail to show respect to your own players is a poorer one. Too much abuse in the stands still even after all we’ve been through.

  57. I just wish all the ridicule we’ve got as Mayo supporters would trickle down to the players and they may use it as ammunition for winning the All-Ireland… It’d be sweet, really sweet.

  58. Ah yes Anne-Marie, to meet the Kingdom in September and to beat them would be very sweet indeed! Us Mayo supporters will never let the dream die until it becomes a reality. Roll on the next game.

  59. I wonder what people expect our opponents to do?
    Should ‘shtar’ not try his best for his team, club or county? Maybe we could argue that at times the games aren’t played in the absolute best spirit but then I’m not sure if I’d respond any better under similar pressure. Rightly or wrongly maybe a bit of cynicism is the difference on the big day when it’s backs to the wall time? If, for whatever reason, cynicism exists then we have to overcome that also…..and this extends to bad refereeing too!
    The winning of titles at any level lies within the player/management system and i suppose supporters have an impact on that in the broader sense.
    Anyway, corofin for andy and mayo for sam……in that order please????

  60. Time to drop the anti Donaghy comments. Hes not my favourite player but deserves huge credit for what he has achieved and the fact is that he destroyed us in 2006 and 8 years later we still couldn’t deal with him . That’s our problem not his. Closer to home I would be concerned about Galway this year , not just because of Corofins victory but because I think they have some fine players. Thought Lundy was very good in all games I saw him play last year and S Walsh is class. But as a Galway man pointed out on this site they may be vulnerable at the back. Our other neighbours Ros defend in numbers, something we have problems with and also have some good forwards so all in all a very interesting Connacht campaign ahead. We need not worry about Donaghy til August and I certainly hope we re still there to worry about him then.

  61. I’m confused with all this so called slagging of Donaghy, the way I see it, the only ones saying anything about the big man are the very ones who are saying we shouldn’t be critical of him. Sure he was a thorn in our side last year, but he wasn’t the first and I’m fairly sure he won’t be the last. And yes, I would imagine most of us were pleased to see him on the loosing side last weekend, so what, seems natural enough to me.

    As regards abuse from the stands or wherever, since when were Mayo supporters supposed to be any less guilty of goading players, or ref’s for that matter. No, don’t think we can claim any moral high ground in that regard, attending some club matches in Mayo will tell you that. And do we have a chip on our shoulder? well maybe, and after all those years, could you blame us….

  62. Cos Donaghy has made a fool of us for 10 years it’s not his fault. He has the medals

    Tyrone bamboozled us too and we cry about horrible football.

    Until we get rid of the purere than pure attitude we’ll be bridesmaids

  63. See on Mayo News Jason Gibbons and Tom Cunniffe played against Clare at weekend. Gavin Duffy, Conor OShea, Danny Kirby, Alex Corduff and Neil Douglas also featured. Doesn’t give team or any report just mentions that those guys played.
    Chris Barrett will be out for another few weeks. Tom Parsons and Andy Moran could be back for next game.

  64. Some of the anti donaghy comments above are pathetic. If I hear donaghy or Cormac Reilly complained about again this year I will go nuts. We sound like the ultimate whingers and sore losers.

    We lost last year coz we threw away leads in 2 games from match winning positions against Kerry. We almost threw away a 6 or 7 point second half lead against cork too in the quarter final, people seem to forget that?? Ironically Cormac Reilly helped us out that day to scrape over the line against Cork!
    We have a problem closing out big games – it cost us a couple of all Ireland’s in the last few years (Dublin 13 also springs to mind), and for me it’s one of the biggest issues Noel and pat need to fix. As for donaghy – if he was wearing a mayo jersey for the last ten years he’d be a cult hero and we would all love him.

  65. Mac’s left boot – I would tend to agree at this stage. I don’t want to hear anything more about “Limerick” when the fact is we need to look in the mirror. Closing out games has “always” been a problem with Mayo county teams.

    I heard the panel has been further cut in recent days. I won#t however mention names here until its made official. Tough time of year for players that are cut and the hardest job a manager(s) has to do in my opinion.

  66. Have heard the same Steve and it’s inevitable but it’s a tough old job surely. I hope the right decisions have been made as we gear up for another year of this.

  67. HopeSpringsEternal, as a centre back, Id be more concerned about what his man did in the game than his getting two points. Another question is how much space did his man get while he was off looking for those scores?
    The big weakness in mayo football is our defenders attacking too much as individuals and not thinking and acting as a unit. A centre back kicking two points should be a rare occurrence. There are plenty lads up the field to kick them over without needing to leave a big gap in the centre of our defence to do so. Just release the ball to them earlier and stop making runs into their space all the time.
    That is a big part of why our forward don’t perform, there is generally 2 half backs, plus their men, blocking up the space they are looking to run into.

  68. That’s interesting, TheMaestro, as a feature of Mayo’s first two games in the league is the likes of Keegan, Boyle etc. generally staying back and holding their positions rather than bombing forward and leaving gaps. I would agree with you in general – defenders should defend; for that reason I’d prefer Cunniffe to Vaughan in the half-back line, for example. But Keegan and Boyle can take their points just as (if not more) effectively than most of our forwards. Should we ignore that source of scores altogether in a given match if the forwards are not doing their stuff? Even Kieran McGeeney / Tomás Ó Sé / Seán Óg De Paor etc. usually chipped in with one or two most days for their counties.

  69. Its amazing that even a good news story in Mayo GAA is turned into a negative one. I suppose it sums up us Mayo supporters! Two of our up and coming players were involved in an All-Ireland winning colleges team. One of them, Stephen Coen, inspired his team, held his direct opponent scoreless and scored two points from play. His team also held their opponents scoreless in the second half. In saying that, yes our defenders should defend first but to be able to kick points from play is great to see as well.

  70. This year will be a particularly tough cut. A serious amount of competitive options in defence/midfield/forwards.

  71. I was also in Kinvara

    Gavin Duffy was played at sweeper but came off with what looked like a hamstring problem as did Alan Dillon

    Thought Danny Kirby looked a good option at 14

    Definitely a more defensive mindset this year

    Pat Holmes constantly at defenders to get back so it will be interesting to see how much our half backs are curbed going forward

    Thought Forde and Corduff looked good

    To try and put any mystery to bed I believe that Keith Rogers was playing at 5

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