Kevin McLoughlin our MOTM from last night

Kevin McLoughlin

Photo: Mayo Mick

Okay, back to business – the votes are in and this time it’s our flying wing-forward Kevin McLoughlin who scoops the MOTM award with 42% of the vote. Kevin was a real live-wire all night and his 1-3 from play provided strong proof that he’s got his 2012 mojo back. Stephen Cluxton clearly couldn’t deal with him in any kind of rational way on the night either!

Congrats to Kevin and also to Jason Gibbons whose storming midfield performance saw him garner 31% of the vote in second place. Congrats too to Mikie Sweeney whose 1-1 off the bench saw him also make the top three, with 5% of the vote.

91 thoughts on “Kevin McLoughlin our MOTM from last night

  1. Brilliant to see Kevin coming back to form at just the right time. Long may it last. Know there are a few still doubtful about Mikie but his performance speaks for itself. And Jason G has been a revelation so far this season. Still stinging about last night but fjnding it easier to see the positives today. Off we go again next week.

  2. Fair play to kevin,’een! He did play a stormer and well done to him. Hopefully he’s back to form and can keep it up consistently. Having said that, I though he played a different role yesterday than he has in a long time.
    I know gibbons has been getting a ton of credit, and it’s due, but looking back again at the match today, Aido was immense, we’d be a completly different team without him. I have a feeling he wants to and will carry this team in time. His work rate yesterday was unreal.
    Anyway, that’s for another day. Fair play to super Mac.

  3. Well done to Kevin, it was great to see him getting back to his goal scoring form too. He took his goal really well. Fair play to Jason Gibbons, he has a really direct style of play when he gets the ball in space. Hopefully Mikie will get a start the next day, to score 1-1 was a great achievement for him. A special word about Tom Cunniffe also, fair play to him putting his club final disappointment behind him. He’s a very solid performer and he gave a lovely assist pass for Mikie’s point too, a very intelligent move, drawing the player then giving the pass.

  4. Absolutely love Kevin McLaughlin for style, pace & pure heart. Last year he wasn’t firing on all cylinders but thank God he is back. I remember being in Ruislip 2011 when he didn’t start couldn’t believe it but he came on as a sub and completely turned the game in my opinion(man beside me thought it was Trevor Mortimor). Best all rounder for years. Last night the linesman on Cusack stand side brutal! We were in section 304 & he did ignore many incidents particularly regarding Diarmuid Connolly he should have walked before Cluxton but as a Mayo fan behind us shouted when Dublin got a line ball….. Oh now you have figured how to wave that flag!!!! I hate listening to all he experts who would have done this that & the other…..OK have an opinion but keep the
    criticisms from being personal.

  5. Yeah. I agree, TC did well and that was a peach of a lay off to Mikey. Hopefully he will start the next day, with Keith moving back!

  6. Well done to Kevin,great performance but I think our best player this year has been Jason Gibbons,always knew he had it in him but didn’t get a fair crack at it the last few seasons.Think Mikey Sweeney has to start against Derry,gives us a different option up front also I think we need to get Keith back in the corner.looks like Aido is getting back to the form he showed against Donegal,if he could release the ball a bit sooner we have a mid field to match any in the country.I have read most of the posts after last nights game and fuck it lads we’re not that far away or as bad as ye think.Improve fitness a bit and correct the silly mistakes we made last night and were as good as what’s there.Read a lot of posts slating us after last nights game but if we won it the same people would be on posting how good we were.We have one game to play with a chance of making the play offs,whatever happens we’re in division 1 next season,fuck all of posters on here gave us a chance of that three weeks ago,every team has a bad day but if we’re real supporters we’ll stick with them come what may,Maigheo Abu

  7. Of course in the Irish times paper today, Ian o riordan has to be an ass and call Kevin mcloughlin by a different name!
    Where the hell do they get these lads from. Kevin mcloughlin is a household name in GAA circles, would he call colm cooper or eoin o gara by a different name? No

    Kevin o loughlin indeed.

  8. Up with a sick child … Hence the early post !!! Just one question regarding match sat night then all eyes on Derry it may seem ridiculous but can’t fathom any other reason … Mayo had the ball and the announcer said 1 minute of Extra time to be added but there was still a minute of normal time to be played could it be as simple as them thinking they only had one minute to waste time ??? (Timing issues again ? ) Great post regarding comments Willie Joe well done with this site long may it continue .. Maigheo Abu!

  9. Well deserved Kevin! He’s coming back to the form we know. Brilliant and intelligent footballer. Looking forward to next weekend already. Derry are already through so they won’t want it as much as us, great opportunity! MaighEo Abu 🙂

  10. great to see kev mc back to his best, we were only talking about his goalscoring on friday…

    folks dont forget that this year will see the HOOTER introduced at Croke Park , willie joe mght need to introduce something similar here on the blog!!

    and finally for the Horan out brigade, be careful what ye wish for, if i see kevin mcstay and his folder coming then i am blaming ye lads 🙂

  11. While i agree Doc picked the ball off the ground ,the ref did not see it but it was brought to his attention by the umpire—this is not allowed in the rules imo
    Also Gavin talked about Cluxton tripping Mac—it was a kick with a much longer suspension.

  12. Disappointed with the draw and done a bit of ranting myself coming out of Croke Park but as WJ as said on his other post calmed down once the sun rose Sunday morning.

    I turned in the guy in the seat beside me and said “Dublin will get a goal” when we were messing with the ball towards the end and so they did. You can’t blame JH for that and if we are to be making silly mistakes then now if the time of the year to get them out of our system.

    Great to see Kevin Mc back on form and he was brilliant as was Jason Gibbons and Andy Moran played well and as usual Lee Keegan. Few others were not at the races but we will leave it at that.

    What grinded my gears most was the Dublin fans and I want to be careful what I say here but about 40-50 of the hill brigade with there drums were chanting coming out of the stadium “If you hate the Mayo B%**%£”ds clap your hands” – now id have thick skin like most of you here but young kids were walking out with parents and didn’t need to hear that sort of trash being aimed at them. Dublin fans also seem to have a gripe with Mayo fans on hill from last September which in my view they should build a bridge and get over it. Not very classy.

  13. Definitely a nasty element among Dublin supporters in Croke Park. Guys in their 30s/40s down the front in 306 turned around when the OGara goal went in and were in the faces of Mayo supporters behind them. Shame to see that kind of stuff coming into GAA.

  14. I agree. Aido was terrific the last night. Fetched clean ball in midfield and provided us with primary possession and he doesn’t always get the credit he deserves.
    He does need to look at his game though, when it comes to off loading the ball before getting crowded out. The thing is, he is such a big powerful man he fancies his chances to break through almost every tackle!

  15. Great to see Kevin with his mojo back & claiming ‘Man of the Match’.
    Mind you getting the MOTM on this site comes with a few health warnings … hasn’t been great for previous winners!
    On our overall situation we are not as fit at this stage of the year as in previous years which has been a factor in our recent endgames. It would appear that we may be learning our lessons & planning our peak fitness for later this time. With this in mind we may all be a little harsh in our criticisms … it is no mean feat in itself to have guaranteed survival in a very competitive Division 1 with one match still remaining …. particularly given that we have had very long seasons these past two years.
    Well done to James & the team in maintaining our long association with Division 1.
    Any further in the League is a bonus really.

  16. I’m going to post something now that will probably get me killed!!
    Horan, tactically, got it almost spot-on the last night and any of the errors were individual based errors by the players and not from the line.
    Firstly, Kevin Mc lined out as No.10 but moved into the corner at throw-in and scores 1-3. As important, his closing down of the Dublin backs reduced the options available to Cluxton and he riled Cluxton so much that he lashed out and gets red carded. He also very nearly played in Freeman for, what would have been a tap-in.
    Secondly, Higgins lined out at No.11 but moved to the wing where he helped to close down the Dublin kick outs going wide to runners. His tracking back helped also and he scored a fabulous point on the run. That experiment was designed for a game like the Dublin one, and while it wasn’t perfect, it is a big improvement and worth sticking with as an option for the bigger games.
    Thirdly, Moran lined out at No.13 but played centre half forward and got through a huge amount of ball. Lost his balance and slipped at 2 crucial times though, blades or studs?
    Fourthly, we wanted a more direct option in attack and we tried it with the long high ball into Freeman. It wasn’t a success although Kevin Mcs goal came as a result of it. The ball was a yard or two too short and favoured the full back coming out. A bit more juice on the kick in and it would have travelled over O’Carroll and into it’s intended target. It wasn’t Horan kicking the ball in!!!
    Fifthly, he introduced Sweeney when the Dub defense was tiring a little know that his speed and ability to find space would be an asset. Also, O’Carroll is not as mobile so he would struggle to follow him around. Result is Sweeney scores 1-3. In fairness to Freeman, Sweeney was getting the ball in different areas of the field but tactically, it worked.
    As regards our defense? We lost 3 of our starting 6 and our keeper gifted Dublin 2 points from terrible passes. 6 wides in both halfs didn’t help either.
    Not all doom and gloom today.

  17. Ya i agree lads . I was not one bit impressed with a group of their fans. I agree all fans have some nasty characters but with the dubs there are nice group of them . Even heard a Dublin man in our section of the Cusack ranting off about Mayo loosers . Now if we had indeed won it would have being much easier to take . They need to get back into their box. I have heard a lot of unsavoury reports from so called Dublin fans on the hill going back over the years.

  18. In fairness to the Dublin fans, they have loads of the genuine variety too. In scale terms, a larger yahoo quotient is maybe inevitable and there always has been a soccer-type undertone to their support in a way that isn’t the case for other counties (though Donegal and Louth have those kind of elements too) but they’ve plenty of decent, fair-minded supporters as well.

  19. Totally agree. The agenda for the league was to find new players and progress as far as possible. Both are on track. If we beat Derry we’ll in the semis against Cork, Derry and prob Tyrone – a great chance to go all the way.

    Regarding the over reaction from saturday’s match if the same 2 teams meet in the 3rd Sunday of Sept (and thats how it looks right now) Saturday’s game will be considered totally irrelevant by both sides. It was only a league match…

  20. No you won’t get killed Pebblessmeller! You are spot on with most of what you say. The only slight disagreement I would have is that you are a bit too kind to Freeman I felt He was behind his man too often. He normally takes the high ball from in front or shoulder to shoulder. Taking it from behind and above the head of the FB is for giants like Donaghy or big Barry. It is also very difficult for outfield players to give the perfect ball in every time. The FF line must be able to win a good share of 50/50 balls. That said I would stick with him.
    I thoroughly agree that Higgins should be left in the attack/ midfield area. When he fully adjusts to this role and lads around him tune into him he will cause mayhem.

  21. I do actually think Horan got it right on Saturday nite side . We crowded out or back line and made it very difficult for dublin to get a score . Thats what you have to do. id prefer myself seening us crowd it out in there half of pits and make every ball a dog fight for them to get over the half way line and turn them over. This would frustrate them and there is a few lads on the Dublin team that are a little hot headed which we could take advantage of . I thin if we get the basics right and start closing out games we could go on and win the league. Dont forget lads we were in charge of the game for most of the game and the dubs only had 11 points on the board up until deep into second half. What needs to be improved can be fixed .I have to say even though its monday i feel quiet optimistic about our chances .

  22. If you keep up this brilliant level of work you could find yourselff in the Mayo backroom team soon!! Excellent work Pebbles!!

  23. Yeah, I agree here. But there may be something n that. Maybe he is being told to carry it into these crowds to draw a foul? Because he does it so often!

  24. Kevin McLoughlin is back with a bang. Delighted! One of my favourite players. He was unreal the other night. So happy for him. I talked to him at the post match banquet in Citywest and you could see how much playing for Mayo means to him.

  25. Well done Kevin Mc – top class footballer – great to see him back to his best. Delighted to see Jason Gibbons coming of age also – he has grown in confidence as this league has progressed and is showing the full suite of skills this year that we look for in a mid-fielder i.e. great fielder of the ball, able to win the “dirty” ball, covers a huge amount of ground and comfortable getting forward and taking his own score. We will need more of the same next Sunday!

  26. Reading the posts from Saturday night on, initially the overreacting to the level heads that came after the storm had past, yes there were aspects from the game that we would rather not to indure but they happened, and we still came away with a point. Hopefully the Monsenior will learn from them mistakes as it is only March, hopefully too the players will learn and benefit from that experience. This time 12 months ago we were getting ready to travel to cork to avoid relegation, we now can aim at taking down Derry in castlebar to take our place in the semis! All in all we are not in as bad a place as ppl are imagining we are! Concerns yes, but optisim……YES!

  27. I saw a so called Dublin fan shouting abuse at keith Higgins as he warmed up on the touchline before last years league semi final. This prick was two rows back in the Hogan stand and shouting wheres your sheep, hows your sheep etc but i could hear him about 20 metres away. This guy was in his 50s and was there with his wife and two kids. Its no wonder Dublin have such an extremely high ratio of knackers to civilised people when you have idiots like this at the helm of the household

  28. I was off the opinion we would loose this game and over ran at midfield but credit to Gibbons and O shea they played really well and showed up physically inadequatices in MDMCA and Cian hair in my eyes O sullivan .

    Half back s were great going forward . Must say im becoming a fan of Drakes.
    HE s a tough determined gent, in a way reminds me of Alan Roche, no nonsense .

    I think Vaughan has to mind the house better though, he really does leave Caff and co too opened.
    Were lucky to have defenders as good as Caff and Cunnife otherwise we would ship more goals than points.

    I think we need a new no. 6 now im not saying we have a sitter like Francy Gregan or Trevor Howley, but more so a second Cunnife if we had one.

    Higgins a back or a forward is still not resolved and even moreso up in the air after pushing him back v the Dubs .
    For me play him in backs, push out Cunnife to 6 and have barrett and Higgins at 2 and 4 .

    On another point am i the only one who thought Andy Moran didnt play well?

  29. The Dublin fans are the best around. Don’t mix them up with the Sat night revellers. You can find that bunch of idots in any one horse town on a Saturday night. I really enjoyed the occation. AOS was great. The ball to the full forward line is too slow and way off the mark. Apart from that I was happy with the performance in general

  30. It’s funny, but it shows you the level of intelligence of some (just some, not all) supporters (and I’m afraid some posters on this blog too) that you are the first person to comment on the fact that Kevin Mc played corner forward and not wing-forward as he usually does. Most people pointed out that Andy would move to half-forward but assumed it would probably be Doc to go in to the full-forward line.

    I know Kevin Mc has played there a few times before for Mayo but it was a master-stroke by Horan. If he got that simple pass to Freeman right, he’d have had close to a perfect game. Horan was tactically very good at the weekend but the players faded a lot in the last 10 and Boyle was a big loss. I’d be very confident going into the Derry game. One other thing, the ball into Freeman bar 2 balls was absolutely terrible – needs to improve a lot.

  31. I think the half back line will need to stay back against the better teams, the problem is that if they are going forward against leitrim or sligo type teams they are only practicing a game that can’t be used against the better teams.
    Someone pointed out that Higgins job against Dublin, more closing down cluxtons options than actual forward play so maybe it’s a case if him being used in different positions depending on the opposition because of his versatility?
    With a bit if luck we will beat Derry and see what happens after that, it would be great to get another go at Dublin in the league semi or final.

  32. Yeah, he will continue to cause problems, even more so with the introduction of the black card. It’s definitely a tactic. Powerfull runners like Vaughan, Keegan and the O’Sheas who can break through the centre – either creating easy scores in front of the posts or scorable frees.

    Problem is… go back to last September where the referee allowed a very physical game to play out and those frees just didnt’ come. Mayo had no plan B and they looked lost every time they broke into Dublin’s 40.

    Alan Freeman – Plan B.

  33. I would have said that McLoughlin played centre-forward, with Freeman isolated inside and Moran playing deep at midfield. In my view a centre-forward plays from the 40 with his back to the posts. O’Connor was given a free role, but like Moran, roamed across midfield.

    Higgins played either as a sweeper or an auxilliary centre-back. Can fans now chill out and stop the campaign to get him out of the ‘forwards’. Numbers mean nothing no more.

    Yes, the ball into Freeman was sh*te.

  34. I am with Willie Joe on this having lived in the Capital for ten years until recently. Most of the genuine Dublin GAA people are great supprters with a deep knowledge of the game outside of as well as inside the Dublin club scene. I enjoyed many great club nights up in Donnycarney that was very similar to the type of atmosphere you would find in Knockmore , Kiltane or Castlebar with plenty sound men and women to have a good logical chat about all thing football and hurling. We know every county has the yahoo element and it’s hard for the Dubs because allied with success and their larger fan base this element can be amplified more than in many other counties!
    I don’t care much for Vinnie’s though ( remind me of a cross between Knockmore and Crossmolina) as I was more of a St Benilda’s man myself due to my housemate playing hurling for them (still plays junior brilliantly according to himself) so if there is any Dub bashing to be done we should take aim at them and Willie Joe in my humbel and of course totally unbiased opinion !!!!!!!! (There can’t be any rule on here that’s democratic if prevents a bit of Vinnies bashing !!!!)

  35. Few things I’d disagree with there, but the main point you make is so true – that numbers mean very little anymore and people need to realise how fluid the game is now. Higgins wouldn’t be a natural centre-forward but he could end up being brilliant where is at the minute and helping out our mid-fielders.

  36. Does any know what the story is with David Clarke, I had the understanding he was nearly fit enough for last years final, just a couple weeks off, but i heard a rumor he wasnt coming back recently, hopefully thats all it is, a rumor.

  37. yes it is too slow and i have being saying this for ages yet. Our attack needs to be far more snappy and direct with lads showing for ball

  38. He is currently a large way down the road to getting his hamstring 100% and will be back in the reckoning soon but probably won’ t be available till the championship is the last I heard

  39. Thanks Trevor but I don’t think I could stand everybody calling for my head at every defeat!! 🙂

  40. Like a lot if people on here I’ve travelled the country with mayo and I’ve never seen or heard so much abuse in all my life the problem is the abuse was from the majority of dublin supporters while I’m aware there’s a few gobshites in every county it is only a few when it’s the majority of supporters it’s a different story they should be ashamed of themself.

  41. Would like to see Clarke back. Also like the suggestion of Barrett and Higgins in the corners with Cunniffe at 6. That would release Vaughan to a floating role between half back and half forwards. Watched a replay of the game last night – initial reaction was OTT; we didn’t do a lot wrong apart from the inept attempt at possession football in the last minute. GAA website stated the match reinforced the view that these are the top 2 contenders this year so we couldn’t be all that bad!

  42. Spot on Pebblesmeller..thats what I meant when I said earlier that kevin played a different role, but you crystalized and articulatedmuch better than i could have. He wasnt in his more traditional role of scooping up breaking ball in midfield.
    In some ways, I think we give something up by having him focus elsewhere, but against Dublin, its crucial to read Cluxtons intent and disrupt (legally of course) his quick fire kick outs.

    Andy played more of Kevins tradiditional role but at times I thought he was just a bit too slow and held things up too much, allowing Dublin to “reset” their defense in time for the attack. In other words, he was too predictatble. I would have swapped Andy out instead of Freezer, because of his pace and vison, I think Mikey could have moved the ball quicker into Freezer. But thats just how I saw it.

  43. Was on this site yesterday and left without posting, because it would have been drowned in a sea of Shiite.

    Good to see normality has prevailed. Well done WJ for your rant, I understand your sentiments, but the majority of posters/readers would be lost without your blog.

    And for all the negative comments, it’s amazing 89% of readers expect us to beat a very good Derry team and we’ll most likely qualify for the semi’s without a win next week. We couldn’t be that bad eh???

    Out of the result from Saturday, I can only see positives. We were by far the better team, but a combination of fitness & over-confidence let the dubs back in. This is a much better place to be in March, than giving the AIC a walloping and thinking we are world beaters.

    Also, JH was obviously trying various styles of play. We all know that Mayo’s running game is very effective and would probably have destroyed Dublin on Sat, but we need options and we need our players to be working on those options in the heat of battle. Key to this is improving delivery of the high ball and we need our midfield players more tuned in to this tactic. This is most effective when you have willing runners to draw out the defence and create more space for the likes of freeman, who only once in the game had the option to knock the ball down, (which created a goal), whereas the defence always had this option. Poor lad hadn’t a hope.

    I also thought it very interesting, the change when cluxton went for a walk. Kick-outs went from a low trajectory to the high ball. We had been dealing with Cluxtons kick-out’s very well by crowding the midfield and reducing the size of target (notice Freeman on his own a lot) which we cleaned up on.
    Our real strength is under the high ball, but I don’t think we reacted well enough when the (enforced) tactic changed.
    It’s only march, but I think the real work will be to getting these players reacting to what’s going on around them. They can all play football and generally seem to do what they are told, but when opposing teams make tactical changes our guys are not picking up on it. What Saturday’s result will have done is give ammunition to JH, to point this out.

    And by the way, I was pretty pissed off myself walking out of croker.

    Maigh Eo Abu

  44. Ya I was quiet happy with result even on Sat night had quick peak on here and left again, thinking i’d watched another game.

    Biggest things I seen Saturday were
    – Hennlley is a very good shot stopper but gets rushes of blood to head with ball in hand
    – Caff is a class act but boy do we make him work hard , he gets no protection or cover from Vaughan
    – Lee Keegan is immense , superb player
    – Gibbons mixed it with big boys, well done, hopefully grow in confidence and carry that form forward
    – David Drake is a great backup/alternative to any of halfback line. Nearly prefer him to Vaughan at this particular time
    – Andy Moran at 11 is work in progress but needs to improve distribution and speed of distribution, I know he has lost pace etc but he should know what type of ball Cillian and Freeman will thrive on and please keep it simple, not KmcD shots
    – Freeman is top class but play decent ball into him
    – Freeman and Cillian thrive on the over shoulder high ball not the dropping flat high ball, wind forwards should only pump diagonal passes in high
    – Mikey Sweeney has a great football brain and is a Hugh asset . If he was more physically robust you would have to insist on his inclusion in starting 15 but he may just be our Ole Gunar Solsjaer
    – Jason Doh worked hard and is getting into it well
    – Kmc inside is a lethal weapon, great to see him confident

    All in all I was happy with the performance, add some defensive stability and no know, covering for your colleague and were as good as anyone, no pot shots in forwards work ball simply and were going places

  45. Outside of the boot do u not think Brendan Harrison deserved a mention in your post? Saved Mayos bacon a few times and IMO defence played better with him and Boyle on. In the western today def that Harrison was replaced at half time due to sickness . He is a real option going forward……

    .
    What happened in last couple of minutes of game was self inflicted and surely will NEVER be allowed to happen again…….

  46. Yeah, I think I seen somewhere that the hooter was put back to 2015 for some reason. Well done to Kevin, I’m delighted to see him back on form again.

  47. I agree that Drake is a tough no nonsense type player and I was impressed by him in earlier league games but I thought Sat night was not one of his better displays.
    In his first play Connolly ran away from him soloing the ball and David couldn’t catch him. He was also largely responsible for Dublin’s second goal by coming off Whelan to tackle mCaffrey who was already well covered and left Whelan completely free to take the pass and lay it off to O Gara. As d’unbelievables might say “jazes lads ye can’t be doing that!…….ye can’t be doing that!” This is very basic defending but I’m sure he will learn from it.

  48. True should have mentioned him ,Harrision is real option I do fear McHale isnt nimble enough for the corner but fine fullback in right circumstances.

    Yeah was dispointing but for frig sake shouldnt be playing around with it on our 21, that was inviting trouble.

    If you were to analysis, may say oh deeper issues, mental scares etc, lack of leadership, why didnt someone demand that ball, all were happy to handpass it when under no pressure but next thing nobody wanted it?

    As far as im concerned more positives than negatives and its only March, hopefully make Semis and play in croker again .

  49. Hooter was put back until next year at the earliest due to some teething problems. They are afraid a hooter could go off in the middle of a player taking an important last minute free is just one example.

  50. Congrats to Kev Mc. Great performance and did everything you would hope from a wing forward like him. Seems to be rediscovering his 2012 form which can only be a good thing.

    Big summer ahead for some players I think, the likes of Keegan, Boyle, O’Shea, Gibbons, McLoughlin and O’Connor look like they could have a stellar year, which is what we will need along with a few others who just need to find the consistency button but are not far away. Thinking of the likes of Freeman, Cafferkey,Andy Moran, Doherty, Vaughan and Higgins when he is put back in the corner. All top top players and if they find the right consistency for the summer then that is up to 12 formidable players with some other very good players just behind them, the likes of Cunniffe, Sweeney, Gallagher, Dillon, Barrett, Seamie, Barry Moran etc…

    Confidance and excitement is growing week on week! I still say Mayo are only playing at 50% their capabilities and we do have an exceptional panel! Deffo in with a damn good shout of winning the league playing at half throttle and the boost that would give them, with 6 weeks then to work on defence would be immense

  51. Yeah Roger we were wondering on Friday when was the last time that Kevin had scored a goal, well we know now anyway! We were hoping that he’d get back into goal scoring form, hopefully he’ll keep it up now. With Doc, Cillian, Sweeney and Freeman all well able to take their goal chances and Gibbons too, that’s a lot of goal scoring options. We have scored six goals in our last two games, each scored by a different player, so that’s a big positive as well.

  52. Its a growing problem in general…at last years AI semi-final a lone Tyrone supporter was unfortunate to sit in the Mayo section I was in and the amount of derogatory abuse he was subjected to was shocking, (some who were old enough to know better) he was even abused for clapping when Tyrone scored….
    My main point being every county has them and I ‘m fed up hearing this holier than thou attitude from a lot of mayo fans.
    Anyway you can only account for your own behavior I suppose…….

  53. Yeah we were actually talking about this last week, about how Cluxton would react if he was put under pressure and we found out on Saturday night. He gave away a penalty against Kerry in last year’s semi-final after he was penalised for not reaching the 20 meter line with his kick-out and then from the ensuing passage of play he fouled Donnacha Walsh to give away the penalty. It’ll be interesting to see how long his suspension will be.

  54. I held off posting after Saturday as I was gutted with the way it finished. After 48 hours of reflection, My views now are:

    Positives

    Kevin mc outstanding
    Cillian looks sharp and is scoring points from play. This is something I feel he has lacked in previous years
    I thought we were excellent midfield. Gibbons was brilliant. Contrary to opinions on here, I though aidan was very good although he needs to stop running into traffic.
    Excellent kick out strategy…that ultimately led to Cluxtons frustration
    A big score racked up and some excellent attacking play
    We were every bit as good as the dubs when it was 15 v 15

    Negatives

    Again, we failed to close out a tight game. The messing at the end should never be repeated and the only positive is that we will learn from that. Tyrone would never have lost that lead or indeed the dubs wouldn’t.
    The draw gives the dubs a big psychological advantage should we meet again but we have to remember that it is a league game in March
    Goals leaked were soft again..granted I do not believe we would have conceded the last 2 if cafferkey was playing
    Freeman and Doherty were poor although some of the blame for that must go to the quality of the long ball which was desperate at times. Freeman needs to be getting out in front more.
    Some desperate shot selection and some bad wides again plus a goal botched prior to the sending off. We have to take these chances
    Use of the extra man was poor and we seemed to relax a bit when we were ahead. We need to be utterly ruthless

    Overall, I have come to the view that this is an unnecessary speed bump but that’s all it is. This season will be judged in one way…success= Sam; failure = all other scenarios. League games in March are nice to win but not the ultimate goal. We are building nicely but need to get a bit cuter. There is no doubt we can compete with all other teams…it’s just about our ability to close out the tight games that I worry about

  55. I was actually just thinking that the end of the Mayo v Dubin game was like the end of the Ireland v New Zealand Rugby game last year. Ireland missed a few chances to close the game out, then tried to keep possession at the end of the game but lost the ball and New Zealand scored the winning try in the dying seconds. This was even more disappointing than what happened to us on Saturday night. Ireland used this incident as a sort of a watershed moment. They turned a negative into a positive, can we do this also? Use this to galvanise us for the rest of the season ahead. They mentioned about this moment a number of times during the season. We know how Ireland’s season finished up, as champions, can we do something similar?

  56. But they didn’t have to face NZ to win the 5 nations championship! We will have to face the dubs and I fear sat night will do them more good than us. But football is a funny auld game.

  57. Hi Irene,
    I am not sure if I am misreading your post but you say at the end “keep the criticisms from being personal” yet you single out Diarmuid Connolly who had a great game and certainly didn’t deserve a red card. I know DC is no angel but I think you are being unfair in my opinion. As I said at the start of this post I do apologise if I have misread your post.

    Kind Regards,
    Martin the Dub

  58. I watched the match 7.5 times and am currently watching the second half here. O shea on the ball good dummy bad wide, anyway give the lads a rest they played very well and earned out the draw to the bitter end of the day. I think its time to go back to the drawing board, Alan freeman is not 11 foot he is 6 foot one put the ball on his head and he will win it and stick it in the awld onion bag for ya.

    Back to the game it was a game of two halves mayo won the first half and lost the second match, i think it was a daw. It will be a great all ireland final again

  59. Yeah diehard, it’s so hard to know, will this game make the Mayo players really really believe that they can beat the Dubs? Or will it make the Dubs believe that Mayo are still mentally fragile when it comes to winning the big games in Croke Park? We also seen that Ireland had only beaten France twice in Paris in the past 42 years. Why was this? They just never performed to their potential over there. It’s a very hard thing to do, beating the French in France, most of your players have to play to their best as players have to do in an All-Ireland final if you want to win it. Ireland overcame the French obstacle by most of their players playing at their best in that game. We need most of our players to play to their best in the big games in Croke Park. It’s an amazing stat that in the second half of two All-Ireland finals, Andy Moran’s goal against Dublin in 2013 was the only score from play by a starting Mayo forward. The only other point from play by a forward was Richie Feeney’s one, when he came on as a sub as a half-forward against Donegal in 2012. That’s not All-Ireland winning form and something we need to rectify in the big games.

  60. Hi All,
    Can I just say that there are assholes following every team and I have been subjected to loads of crap over the years because I wear my colours proud and to be honest you cant hate every Dub for what a few of them shout and roar. I was in the company of very sound Mayo people on Saturday in Croker and the respect and craic we all had for each other was great. I agree its very hard to listen to but be the better person and ignore it no matter where you are from. Sorry to butt in on this one but I just wanted to post this.

    Kind Regards,
    Martin the Dub

  61. My main point is, Ireland lost a game that they should have had wrapped up, Mayo did the same thing too. Ireland used it as a positive thing for the rest of the season which we should do too. Use it to our advantage for the rest of the season and try to ensure that if we are in a winning position again that we close the game out and not try to hang onto a lead.

  62. Does anyone except me think that Mayo could just be punching above their weight for the last 2 years 3 months. Vital positions are prone to serious errors and after watching the tyrone full forward line against Cork yesterday we really have only two really scoring forwards Cillian and Kevin Mcloughlin. Freeman is also good enough, just needs a few good games to get his confidence back. Need three other forwards to include a creative centre half forward. Defensively way too open, being opened up the middle all the time. Ger Brennan may not be an eye catching defender but boy nothing soft goes past him as he is always in his position right smack in front of the full back line. Really think with the resources we have Mayo are doing really well to be there or there abouts.

  63. Just watched highlights twice on TG4……..McLoughlin in beautiful form……..We’re not that far away from the mark at all……..but need more leaders on the field and a good sprinkling of cop on and cuteness for the closing out of these games…….One key observation for me, whatever about OGaras 2nd goal, there was loose marking for his first……really need to tighten up there.

  64. Bottom line is Mayo lose big games due to big lapses in concentration at vital times in the game.

    Last year we were all over Dublin like a bad rash and then handed them 1-1 on a plat to let them back into the game. Point from a quick free gone awry and the goal from poor communication between full back and goalkeeper.

    Were one play away from landing the big one. I wouldn’t look too much into league games in March.

    One pet peeve I have (and I may have harped on about this before) is the shyte that comes out of Midwest. Calling one player “Jimmy Goals” and referring to another as a goal scoring specialist, because he banged in 4 goals against Leitrim in the FDB league. When one of our guys sinlge handedly wins us 2 All Irelands like Kevin McManamon, only then should we start using such superlatives-RANT OVER

  65. After seeing the game now on tv, I’ve changed some of my opinions from Saturday night. I’m really glad I didn’t post before now.
    As the old saying goes,
    It’s better to sit back , say nothing and have people think you’re stupid ,
    Than to open your mouth and remove all doubt .
    We played some brilliant stuff , made some silly mistakes and the last two minutes were off the wall , but it’s only March. All is not lost.
    Yes beating Dublin , would have laid down a marker , but beat Derry next Sunday and we’re still where we wanted to be.
    I’ll still be in Castlebar , boots or no boots.

  66. Congratulations to Kevin McLoughlin on a MOTM performance, a timely boost for the Knockmore man. Reading the comments above, there seems to be a complete change of attitude regarding the Mayo performance, as against the doom and gloom of a few days ago. Yes we played some great football be times and took our scores very well, but we mustn’t loose site of the fact either, that having built up a six point lead midway through the second half and playing against fourteen men, we all but threw it away in those closing minutes, and was it not for a very bad wide by Dublin with time almost up, things would have been a whole lot worse. Playing some great football and building up big leads is one thing, but knowing how to close out matches is another. Until such time as we learn to do just that, we will always struggle to win the big games. Derry will be our next test, lets hope we have learned something from last Saturday.

  67. I don’t quite understand the concept “closing out the game” in Gaelic football. Will someone explain it to me please (genuinely). I always thought that if you were winning the game you just kept on playing the same until the ref blew the final whistle. Yeah? No?

  68. Maritn the dub in all fairness did you see the pic in yesterdays Sunday World of the collision between Vaughan and Connelly. Vaughan went into the tackle hard with his shoulder and with his hands clenched together, leaving his head fully exposed. Connely tackled Vaughan with a fist to the right eye socket. A cheap shot if I ever seen one. I agree that Connelly is a brilliant player but there is no place for that cheapshot shite from any player on any pitch.

  69. Yes diehard, your bang on there, just keep playing the same until the whistle, or bring everyone back behind the ball, Mayo did neither.

  70. Look you’ll get clowns wherever you go but for the most part true Dublin Gaa supporters are decent people who just want to see their County beat the County that stands in their way. When the match is over I could shake hands with the best of them and vice versa.

  71. Kevin Mc, a class act, huge heart, brains and skill.
    Jason G , a class midfielder throughout the league and Mikie Sweeney, well I have only seen him perform a couple of times and that was on tv but he has a Gooch like brain and seems able to footpass with like ability, I now see what the lads from the north of the county have been saying for a while and it’s no surprise that Kiltane reached the Inter final, this guy has it and we need to see more of him.
    MaighEo Abu.

  72. I agree with you whitely but the only man in my mind who has single handedly won an AI for his team is Maurice Fitz. Finest footballer of my generation.

  73. I think it was Connolly who brought down Kevin McLoughlin as he went through on goal in the second half. Not a red card but certainly a black, but the ref bottled it having already sent off Cluxton. As for the photo of Connolly’s fist in the vicinity of Vaughan’s face a still photo is not proof of anything but I would like to see the video clip. Connolly has been mentioned in too many dispatches for me not to have suspicions.

  74. They did that in the all ireland final too last September. Someday they will get their “come up ons”!

  75. Nephin, I’ve been following your posts and honestly nobody would think you were stupid!

  76. I still can’t shake that sinking feeling…. There’s no way to dress up the collapse against Dublin. I have serious concern for our team in pressure situation, in croker, in championship in a winner takes all game. Based on past experience’s it all points to a negative result. I honestly believe these games will come back to haunt the minds of the lads when the pressure comes on. I live in hope as always and will support them to the end but I’m the least confident this year than the last two years.

  77. Problem is that the 2 man tackle is allowed now – one on one you’d fancy him to keep going, but 2 and 3 tackles at the same time is asking too much. Needs to look up and assess what tackles are going to come his way – or similarly his teammates need to let him know.

  78. Well done to Kevin McLoughlin on winning the
    GAA.IE FOOTBALL PLAYER OF THE WEEK

    1. Kevin McLoughlin (Mayo) – 546 votes (40%)
    2. Kyle Coney (Tyrone) – 495 votes (26%)
    3. Fiontán Ó Curraoin (Galway) – 321 votes (24%)

  79. Well done to Kevin – that’s the third Mayo player this year to follow up a MOTM award here on the site with a GAA.ie Player of the Week award!

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