Calm down: this place hasn’t gone #GE16 crazy – and will, you’ll be glad to know, remain a political bullshit-free oasis for the next three weeks – but, seeing as voting in the hot topic of the day, let’s do a bit of it here.

You know the drill by now – match at the weekend, we could win, we might lose, that kind of thing. The Dubs are 2/7 favourites to win on Saturday night and, given our contrasting fortunes last weekend as well as our extremely long list of players either injured or unavailable, another paddlin’ could well be on the cards. Or not, as the case may be.

What do you reckon: win, lose or draw? Vote! Vote! Vote!

How will we do against Dublin?

  • Lose (70%, 307 Votes)
  • Win (25%, 110 Votes)
  • Draw (5%, 23 Votes)

Total Voters: 440

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66 thoughts on “Vote!

  1. It might be 15 against 15 but the dubs have a far stronger machine at all levels and with our injuries and absentees the only thing we can be contemplating this Saturday is keeping a very tight defense where any dub with goal on his mind will get the shoulder and land back in ballyer or wherever they came from. Even the most optimistic of us can hardly see us winning or drawing this, I don’t mind, just don’t let them in for a bag of goals and swelling their heads even further.

  2. Does anybody have any information on what injuries David Clarke, Chris Barrett, Seamus OShea, Conor Loftus, Alan Dillon and Andy Moran have and when the are expected to be back to fitness???

    Is it just bad luck we have so many injuries in the panel at the minute or is there any other reason. I know the players have had a busy few years so you would expect some wear and tear but so have Kerry, Dublin and Donegal and they do not seem to be suffering to the same degree with injuries.

    Also I know we are not long back training but neither are Kerry or Dublin and considering they both got to the All Ireland Final and would have been away on team holiday and other trips they seem to be far fitter than us at the moment.

  3. I’m not normally this way inclined, but there’s not a lot of evidence to suggest we can win this encounter. Its early in the league, we have many players unavailable for selection, the new lads are not up to Div 1 football pace just yet and the seasoned lads are not up to pace yet either.
    Meanwhile, Dublin really toyed with Kerry for the most part last weekend and that was a fairly good Kerry team. Even at this early stage, they are excellent all over the field, but particularly in the forward line, where they remain lethal. They just haven’t skipped a beat since September and on the form they are in, look likely to cruise to a win here.

    But, we have something going for us, we are at home! There will be a large crowd, big atmosphere! the Dubs love to travel , so it should make for an exciting game.
    With that in mind, I believe Mayo will raise their game, but even so, I don’t think it will be enough this time. But, anything can happen and this is why we play the games, not just mail them in.

  4. One thing is for sure about this upcoming game….Mayo are less likely to be taken by surprise than Dublin. We know the situation we re in. We know we ll have to fight tooth and nail to even stay with them. Could it happen that the Dubs might venture onto the pitch expecting our fellas to be prostrate on the grass? Could they maybe,possibly,please be so very over confident in their abilities that it might take some sparkle off their performance.
    In any case we ll be there doing our bit and taking what we can from the encounter.

  5. Went with a loss and that’s not being negative but realistic. Too many factors against us I’m afraid. I would hope that the trimming received in Cork will help focus the minds. An improvement in performance is what I’m hopeful of rather than a win.
    It’s early days yet.

  6. St Pats Oldie says: I will agree with you on that. If we can come away with something positive from the game it will be good. A serious drubbing probably will do us no good at this point. We will need a storming finish at the end like we do most years.

  7. Haven’t even entertained the idea of a win..can’t see it happening ..remember vividly last year’s encounter and was not expecting the bashing we got..AND there was a super turn out of supporters that night..hoping for an improvement on the Cork scoreline but expecting a similar scenario to last year..obviously would love an upset..

  8. The league for us will begin in Ballybofey on the 28th. The main job Saturday is to avoid a complete rout. Dublin are coming down on Thursday and have had a big training weekend planned well in advance, which might deaden the legs ever so slightly. The only problem is with such a strong panel to choose from, they all know any drop in performance is likely to see them receive the curly finger.
    Anyone who reads what I post here will know I am far from a negative poster, but I feel one thing that has waned slightly since Horan left is the notion of consistent competitiveness. There were games under Horan were you might have felt a win would be tough but even if you lost you knew it wouldn’t be a hammering. I feel that is the most important characteristic that needs to be brought back to the team by Stephen.

  9. Well boys and girls if you’re expecting a trimming , make some yoyos out of it , pp have the spread at four points even money . That’s Dublin to beat us by more than four points at evens.

    Have a sneaky feeling we will win this by 16 points or more.Everything is going to go right for us on the night , AOS and Evan Regan will bag a brace a piece , Connolly will be sent for an early bath , McMahon will get a straight red also , Dublin supporters will get drunk , spend a fortune in Mayo the weekend , everyone in Mayo will be happy out.

  10. Anyone read Sean Moran in the Times today? – compulsive reading – I would like to hear how folk who are working at growing and developing the playing youth outside of our capital city feel about some of the statistics in the piece. Presumably the content is accurate and if so it is shocking.

  11. To put the Horan ‘consistently competitive’ mantra in historical perspective, our first visit to Croker under JH resulted in Dublin hitting 4-15 and leading by 14 points after twenty minutes. We did hit back to 3-13, because Dublin fell asleep. When they woke up they tagged on five points in the closing minutes.

    Having said that, I’m worried after last Sunday. I’m taking heart from the positive spin most posters are putting on the defeat. And, the league can be a bit crazy, as quite often, last week’s beaten dockets put one over on the crowd who looked world beaters the previous week.

  12. If we are hammered again at the weekend catcol, I dread to think what kind of reaction there will be here – even though the reasoning should remain the same as this week’s.

    I too believe that the campaign begins in Ballybofey, but am still hoping that every game is different and that we can knuckle down and challenge harder on Saturday. No-one wants to be humiliated. But as with everything, I guess we have to have patience and have faith in the management team too.

  13. I’ve seen it too, richardmgd – I might do a quick piece on it later on if I get a chance but I’m not sure if this will happen either.

  14. Let nobody think that Mayo are going to get anything soft in Ballybofey. It`s the makings of another hard and difficult game.

    The same can be said for the Monaghan game. Anyone who thinks that we`re on easy street after the Dublin game are fooling themselves.

  15. I for one am not saying it’s easy street after the Dublin game Observer. What I’m saying is that the injury list should be shrinking, some of the club players involved in AI action will be back and we’ll have had a further 3 weeks training. I hope by that stage to start seeing more of a shape to the team and maybe some inkling of what we hope for in playing style.

  16. hopefully the performance against cork will act as a motivation to put in a much better performance against the dubs.

  17. I disagree with the view that our league starts in Ballybofey. It has already started and we are in difficulties. Saturday’s game is crucial in many ways not least for Stephen Rochford. How any new leader or manager responds in difficult circumstances is a defining factor in how successful they will be. Handle it well and everyone has confidence in you – handle it badly and doubts begin to emerge. That is just how life is in leadership and management. Therefore it is crucial for SR. and his management team that we put up a real battle on Saturday night even with a very under strength team. Winning is not at all crucial or even expected by most reasonable people but a very competitive and abrasive attitude combined with a savage work rate IS what’s expected and needed. If SR. can get this from the lads then his leadership is greatly strengthened and mayos pride and morale are very much in tact. If on the other hand we suffer a humiliating defeat this will do damage to everyone.

  18. I was just checking out the dontfoul stats page there now on the Mayo v Cork game. Two main stats stand out for me. Cork had 28 shots on goal we had 25. Cork had a conversion rate of 68%. Ours was only 48%. The second stat to take note of is Cork won 18 of their 21 kick-outs, we only won 14 out of 24 of ours.

    These are two areas with a lot of room for improvement for us. We scored less than 1 out of every 2 chances that we created and only won just over 1 out of every 2 of our own kick-outs.

    At least if we can make some improvements in these two areas, it will be a sign of progress for us.

  19. I see that a COShea and A Galagher were both playing for NUIG today versus UCD. I presume they are also both available for Saturday night so.

  20. I noticed another gem on dont foul blog.
    In all sectors inside 45, frees kicked from the hand are more accurate than from the ground.
    Its dont foul so the stats are from a large sample size and well mulled over you can be assured. I guess the narrowly wide from the ground gets less criticism than narrowly wide from the hands. I’v often thought a bit unusual that the soccer kick from the ground is seen as traditional just because it was the old rule. The kick from the hands is more native to the sport.
    You would wonder how many good freetakers have been missed out on due to the fascination with off the ground kicks.

  21. Diehard…………..Last 5 lines of your piece above are spot-on !! – that’s exactly what’s required on Saturday (…..and the first few lines not too bad either !)

  22. I dunno about that stat from frees from the ground. What about when the conditions also play a serious part.

    E.g. If you are kicking into a gale from distance I would say you would get better accuracy from distance from the ground simply becasue the ball would stay for longer at a much lower trajectory.

    Also it doesn’t actually say from whom that stat is taken but lays the claim to all cases. Personally I would take a regular of the ground kicker versus a regular out of the hand kicker.

    E.g. it would better if they had a direct comparision for someone like say Bryan Sheehan (nearly always takes off the ground) versus say Bernard Brogan (mostly out of the hands).

    Of course you can always tailor the stats anyway to suit your argument.

  23. Absolutely agree with Observer 2 there will be nothing soft in Ballybofey or in Monaghan or indeed when Kerry come to town but the management team deserves time and patience and to be honest the players owe us nothing I think they will do themselves justice on Saturday night maybe not win it but I’d be happy with a good workrate and no silly goals being conceded

  24. We must be patient. The prevailing view among supporters last year was that a bit of tweaking here and there by Noel and Pat and a couple of new players was the answer to our woes and would finally get us over the line. Like a recession, sometimes you don’t know you’re in a trough until you’ve been on a downward spiral for two or more subsequent phases. So it could be with us. We may be at the end of a cycle that began with Horan’s tenure. James didn’t have the most auspicious of starts, a mediocre enough league campaign and a near disaster against London marked the beginning of his management. But piece by piece he assembled his team, imparted his style of play and slowly but surely the players bought into it and brought us to the top table. We are at the stage now where some of our key players from the past few years are in the latter stages of their careers and the new players are transitioning up to the level of inter-county play. It’s not the well-oiled machine that was wielded by Horan. We are also competing against Dublin and Kerry teams that are in their fourth years with their respective management teams and are at the peak of their powers. Then you factor in a resurgent Cork and suddenly our path back to the final is a rockier one.

    Rochford must be given a chance, I believe the coaching staff have what it takes to manage a team that will compete at the highest level but honestly we could be talking in years before we get back to and exceed the level we were at. It may be that we get relegated and fail at the provincial level and qualifiers this year, but honestly given that the team has played at such intense levels, playing two full seasons with replays against the top teams over the past two years (practically full AI campaigns), would it be such a shock if we were to bow out early this year? Will supporters call for the management’s heads if this happens?

    But it’s still only the first week of February and no-one knows how the year will pan out. Whatever happens on Saturday night – win, lose or draw in whatever fashion, we will be in roughly in the same position at this stage in the league as we have been in previous years. We will have our two most difficult games out of the way and with some hard work over the three week break and more players returning to the squad we will be in a good position to earn enough points to maintain our status in the league. So whichever way the result goes I won’t be panicking.

  25. What would have happened in 2010 if we had shown the patience we are displaying at present. A heavy defeat on Saturday will have a bucket load of posers calling for heads to roll and proclaiming the sky is falling down or something like that. I was not in favor of the SR appointment but as a supporter I will back them to the end. I see this as my roll and contribution and I am happy with this arrangement. I am glad we gave JH time and I will always be grateful for the great times on the road chasing a dream. In Cork last Sunday there were signs of a foot passing game emerging and that is a great sign. Our pace and responses to the breaking ball was a worry, but it was still January.

  26. diehard, as Martyk has already said, you’re last post there is spot on. Yes we have very little chance of winning this match, but it’s in every ones interest to make Dublin work their socks off for the victory. Rochford will I’m sure be telling his players the importance of giving a good performance, especially in front of their own supporters and also to restore some confidence following the Cork game. Donegal as we know will be a tough match for us especially in Ballybofey, so that’s why a good showing v the Dubs is a must.

  27. I wouldn’t be panicking even if we got relegated. Donegal won the AI from division 2, McGuinness didn’t care an iota all his focus was on September.
    One thing I noted from TV3 highlights was the super performances of a few players. McHugh for Donegal topped the list and Paddy Andrews and Paul Mannion for Dublin. The emergence of strong full forwards McBrearty, Newman for Meath and Comer for Galway. All very effective but none as strong as AOS or Kerry’s Walsh. So without a sweeper all teams are in trouble. We have 3 choices for the role, young DOC, Keith Higgins or Donal Vaughan who comes out top in the beep test in training. Higgins would be my pick at the expense of loyal servant Doherty.
    I’d be thinking Freeman should play in FF line Saturday as he troubled Dublin in 2013 final before substitution and he needs opportunity to keep Kirby out of the team.

  28. I’d like to see Drake in for this one too as I liked the no nonsense way he defended (when in defense) in the drawn Dublin game. He was putting up a wall out in half backs sending signal thou shalt not pass. Body language was that he’s tough. Not sure if FB line or HB, probably FB line as we have so many half backs. Guys like Kilkenny wouldn’t get through him easily.

  29. Shuffly Deck, although I really love the idea of competing to stay in Div 1 year on year (…..nearly 20 years unbroken now, I think), I see that one of our All-Ireland Finals in the ’90s was when we were in Div 3.

  30. Ultair and Shuffly Deck…. I agree 100%.. time and patience is needed.. Think of how useful the qualifiers would be in terms of extra match practice.. Kerry won a recent All Ireland from the qualifiers. We have been a flawed, nearly right team for the past few years. Now we need to eliminate the flaws and get it right!!! Then, and only then, Sam, here we come!!!

  31. @ pj McManus, pj, a heavy defeat would indeed bring out calls for heads to roll and you can hardly blame them if it happens. The thing to remember is that Rochford and co know that they have little chance of beating Dublin with this weakened panel, what we should be seeing if right is right, is a game where Mayo defend their own goal and keep the score low. A game where Dublin blow us away is not good on any level, how can players listen and believe a management that set them up to play in a manner to take a heavy defeat? They can’t and won’t let it happen, I think we will see a very low scoring game and even if we lose it as I expect we will, this game should be all about defending, it’s not like we don’t need the practice.

  32. We seem to forget that Dublin blew us away in the league last year but it did not matter a jot come championship time. Of course I would like to see us coming out on top Saturday night but I cannot see it happening. But neither do I think that all out defence is the best approach, allowing Dublin to come at us. I want to see us fronting up against Dubl;in all the way, throughout the field, for example attacking their kickouts whether short or long. Giving them soft possession anywhere on the field is asking for trouble and this is one case of “ask and you shall receive”.

  33. Shuffly, not to nit-pick, but Donegal competed in the first division before winning the AI.

    They did reach the final on the year they competed in Div 2, though.

    While relegation would be bad, it’s only really next year that will be an issue, we will still have had a tough league campaign under our belts by June this year!

  34. The year that Donegal were relegated from Division 1, in 2013, they had a disaster of a year, remember what we did to them in the quarter-final. It really drains a team of confidence. This team is at the stage where it can’t really afford a lost year, so I don’t think relegation would be a good sign for our team going forward and would do us no favours in the long run at all.

  35. It’s a completely unprecedented situation that we find ourselves in here. I can’t recall the likes happening before ever. It’s interesting to look at Done Deals revelations in the context. They reveal that we wer nt as far off Cork as it appeared at the time. Most of our inadequacies were simply due to being off the pace…not clued into each other, not there for breakdown at middle, soft marking etc.
    So looking back, Cork was good for us…a few players stepped up. Looking to sat night I expect more improvement in the above areas and that will be plenty for me at this time.

  36. Have to disagree with the gradualist school of thought emerging.

    Whatever happens this year will happen, but the intention of the players, by my estimation, is All-Ireland or bust.

    They didn’t get rid of management last year to embark on a long-term strategy. They took a very calculated step that was high-risk, could have blown up in their faces, and effectively put their past reputations on the line. Andy Moran and Dillo, could have walked away, but committed for another year. They didn’t commit to ensure a transition. Why? They all think, and Cillian O’Connor said as much to Keith Duggan, that they are within steps of the Promised Land and that a different set up will help bring that about. A set up that is more professional, better resourced, and all round, have a better game plan. That is why I maintain they are, or should be, or should see themselves, as under the highest pressure this year. There is nowhere else to go. So any evidence of diversion or eye off the ball, or lack of focus would be very worrying.

    Secondly, management. With the player profile the way it is, Rochford has no option but to adopt the one-year strategy, for 2016 anyway. Donie Buckley has not come back to be part of a five-year plan. I’m sure he, thinks very highly of the players and knows they can land the big one. Ditto, Tony McEntee; he’s not clocking up all those miles for fun, going to Dublin to shoot the breeze and tearing down to Castlebar to be part of a long term effort. Even Barry Solan, staying on board, seems proof of that mentality, employed as he is now by Arsenal.

    Rochford might, in his heart of hearts, think that he needs to chuck out half the current team, and nurture the emerging talent from 2013 and beyond, but he can’t do that; not this year. Even James Horan didn’t do that. O’Mahony claims to have done it after 2007, but even there there still was a lot of continuity. I say, Rochy in his heart of hearts may think that way, because he may view the running game negatively and want to turn Mayo into Galway footballers. He may tweak, but really he can’t be too radical with this bunch.

    So, it’s 2016 or bust for this lot. Let’s hope they give it a right royal rattle.

  37. I also think there has to be a blend though of experienced players when you’re bringing players through , we are lucky in that sense as we have 24/25 year olds like Cillian and AOS who are top class players .
    When Ye say chuck out half the team , I get confused . Leaving Dillon and Andy aside (whom I believe still have something to offer anyway) what other players could possibly retire? The 28/29/30 year olds ? Sure wtf would they retire for they are still as good as any about .

  38. Catcol I agree that that backroom team is looking for an immediate return. Though I am not sure that Rochford is thinking that way. The way Mayo set up in Pairc Ui Rinn was similar to Sligo’s set up last year. No thought to stopping the runners. This is where all the damage came from. IMO the full back line played ok but there were no thoughts for defending further out the pitch. The half forwards did not defend at all!! The modern game is all about running and you cannot change that without having major problems. I could not see any evidence of a sweeper the last day. I cannot see how the game can be played without one (two?) when backs now attack as well as midfielders. I feel that everyone is blaming the players the last day where I feel the system was as much to blame as the players.

  39. We will get better the longer the season goes on. I believe we will struggle to maintain division 1 status, but the we will just about make it. I would not be surprised to see us beaten early in the championship but progress through the backdoor to the final. The longer the new management has the players the better their ideas will be stamped on both the players and the style of play.
    We’ll be grand.

  40. Really don’t see that happening pebbles, if you can’t beat Galway and Ross in July you’ll not be beating Tyrone, Cork , Donegal or Monaghan in August .

    Give it a few weeks and supporters will have got their mojo back, would of made very bad boxers , one good shot in the mouth and they’d throw in the towel.

  41. For anyone outside Ireland that can’t get Irish TV on satellite or indeed anyone without sky, programme in the channel manually on your sat box.

    Irish TV 11.224 H 27500 2/3

  42. Our length of time on the Rd with this team is well documented..I can’t see them getting through the qualifier route..higher risk of lads getting injured etc..

  43. We’ve had a few years on the road with this team as they say but I don’t see why it’s such a big issue , is it the heart break factor ? As some Kerry teams were on the go a lot longer but they won AI s inbetween defeats if that’s what Ye mean.

    Andy and Dillon aside . Most of our bucks didn’t come in till 08/09/10 with Higgans there since 06 granted . We are adding youth too so I don’t see anything alarming about timeline ,age profile . I’m not saying we are a youthful side like say Roscommon but nope I don’t really accept we are a tired team and they will prove that later on . Lots of daft notions about these days , Jim McGuinness alluded to a five year term of a team in Gaelic football and people latched onto it , it grows legs , taken out of context and then social media makes it gospel according to cyber.

  44. Catcol…. one simple fact…we have an unfinished team. Is it going to be the finished article by Summer? Do we want the same results again?
    @ Sean Burke. Kerry won an All Ireland coming through the qualifiers. They were almost beaten by Longford.

  45. As early season week-ends go, this one ahead should be a very interesting one:

    1. Will we put up a fight against the Dubs.
    2. Will our two clubs improve our winning stats in All-Ireland finals.
    3. How will Roscommon get on away from home against Kerry.
    4. How will Galway get on at home against Tyrone in Division 2.
    5. Who will win between the top two teams in Division 1, Cork and Donegal (at home).

    We’ll see how it goes, it should give us some early pointers anyway for the year ahead!

  46. Joe Mc, I’m a big fan of yours and enjoy your comments posted here, even if I don’t always agree with them, but comparing anything Kerry has done in the past with what Mayo might do, is stretching it a bit to far. Kerry’s success rate at winning All Irelands leaves all other teams in the shade. The Dubs might be the dominant team at the moment, but rest assured these Kerry lads will be plotting their downfall maybe sooner than we think. As for Mayo, we can only live in hope, hope, the one true ingredient that keeps us going, and that Joe is something we’ll never give up on !

  47. Hi All,
    I thought the very first comment on this section from Dave was really hilarious about the shoulder and the Ballyer crack. Nice one Dave its great….I think it will be a close game on Saturday, you had us beaten last year almost twice don’t forget. Anyway best of luck on Saturday and her is one for Dave….A Dub walks into the Mater Hospital on a Saturday night covered in blood from head to toe and the nurses all panicked and ran over to him asking where he was bleedin from…he says Im from bleedin Ballyfermot!!

    Kind Regards,
    Martin the Dub

  48. Martin, we had you beaten almost on the drawn game from shear will to not go out on the day and that was only in the dying minutes when the dubs thought it was all over, the replay was annihilation once your boys opened up and the league game last year was another annihilation, you cannot say otherwise. neither mayo nor Kerry can live with your machine today or anywhere down the line from what I can see and the Leinster title is yours for every year you want it from here on, 10 of the last 11 says it all really. Mayo will need to defend ferociously this Saturday or face another gutting, it will of course mean shoulders, etc will be employed, but sure aren’t the dubs well used to using them too?
    We have the scottish premiership recipe now in championship and league of Gaelic football, one team is head and shoulders above the rest, watch Dublin walk the league and win Sam with ease again in 2016, barring a major upset.

  49. Just voted. The negativity from the supporters is astounding. I voted for a win. I’m not driving down from Tyrone to waste my time and money. I’m expecting this Mayo team to fucking well win. I’m sure that’s what the players and management are expecting as well. Why would ya bother playing or supporting a team that you hoped wouldn’t at worst get hammered or at best keep it close and lose by a three or points. I just don’t know.

    Anyways I’m heading down tomorrow eve. Is anybody meeting up for a few pints? I won’t entertain any sad faced woe begotten conversations about injuries or fitness levels etc. Let’s stick it to the dubs on Saturday. We’re well able for them and we owe them bigtime. Let’s send them back to the big smoke wtih one hand longer than the other.

    If there’s any dubs down fer the weekend. Don’t be frightened by cows. Cows are dead sound. There not dinosaurs or anything. They give milk and cheese burgers and steaks. The black and white ones, they give ya the creamy pints of Guinness. You’re all welcome. Looking forward to the match.

  50. Would love to see Mayo win but as we learned in the past few Septembers that the team with the better footballers on the pitch and subs normally wins ,, .we really need to bang in a few goals against them to test them . Looking forward to it ,, actually enjoying seeing the ‘ fringe players up against top class footballers ,, we will need them as the year goes on ,, enjoy the weekend ,

  51. Nice one Martin the Dub we really cheer around here these times. If you are going to McHale Park enjoy the game. Bring the big Blue and Bluer AIG brolly with you as I believe the sky over Mayo could come crashing down on top of us any day now.

  52. Mayo McHale, ma man. I don’t believe in hope without realism. We are hoping for over 60 years. We have the talent, no doubting that. It’s just not being used right. I would now equate Mayo with Kerry. We have matched them and should have beaten them but we f..ked it up ourselves. I’m only saying we need to get it right!!
    Then, everyone look out. 😉

  53. Very interesting coverage of Dubs win against Kerry last week on Setanta Alliance Leagues Extra.Good analysis of system they have in place by Mossy Quinn . The players are tuned into what each other have in mind. Big emphasis on O Sullivan’s role in midfield covering back.Not always him but always someone…Connolly a few times.Attacks starting at the back,sweeping up the field, forwards out in front all the time because K backs are defending behind. Point made that defenders should be in front some times and sometimes behind depending on how far the ball is coming from. Cooper and Mc Carty and the other winger the carriers. The ball is moved as swiftly as possible starting with Cluxton….it’s his way…quick short kick or accurate longer one cos someone has run and earmarked the target fur Cluxton.He seldom has to hit a fifty fifty ball to the middle .They just think more quickly than the opposition! The forwards tear into opposition with controlled aggression…get by or are fouled or recycle to another runner.But speed is the thing combined with the football skill and thinking with the one brain as it were.

    It all looks simple enough….the hard bit is …can you do it? Roll on sat night!

  54. Needless to say I’m dreading this in counter as feel that we simply aren’t strong in midfield or ended the back line for that matter. I think that we’ll be fecked out of it by dublin much the same as last year’s humiliation only slightly worse. I may sound negative but after making the decision to support the boys in cork and end up getting a poor showing from them I can’t really take a positive.

  55. Inbetweener.. it can be done you know. Jim Gavin remarked that the defeat by Donegal was the best thing ever to happen them. It exposed their defensive frailties. He set about correcting it straight away and the next year they had a new defensive system in place. Note i say “system”. The role of sweeper, per se, is past. Anyone can defend!! I did notice Connoly back a lot because he had red boots on and I saw the boots.. There is nothing to stop Mayo doing the same thing but it takes time…
    Did anyone notice last year how the two corner backs closed in to help the full back every time, creating 3 players in front of goal at all times. Great stuff!!

  56. Mayo were employing a defensive system later last year with Diarmaid especially, Kevin Mc and Doherty all coming well deep. We also tried the sweeper but it fell on Drake a newcomer in the first game. With that system we were very competitive against the Dubs. What we didn’t do was fine tune it in the league ala Tyrone in Castlebar who showed a defensive system actually yields more scores.
    It works better in the league when teams not 100% fit whereas come championship 1 v 1 almost works. Don’t forget Tyrone made a decent Monaghan look poor and got a rake of goal chances v Kerry. The system nearly took them there.

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