Looking back, looking forward

Whatever about the upcoming County Convention, it sure feels like a very becalmed time right now from a Mayo GAA perspective, which, for me is just as well as it’s far from becalmed at the minute from a work point of view. But, then again, there’s only just over a month until the 2015 inter-county season gets going (sort of) with our Round 1 FBD match against NUIG.

There were two pieces in the papers over the last few days to break the tedium, one looking back and the other facing ahead, one conjuring up feelings of wistfulness and what might have been, the other whetting the appetite for what lies ahead in the new year.

The first was an interview with James Horan, which took place around the All-Stars match in Boston at the weekend and which got wide coverage yesterday – Irish Independent, Irish TimesIrish Examiner. The bit that got the headlines was what James had to say about paying managers but the more expansive piece in the Indo includes some reflections from him about his time in the hot seat.

The second is a very upbeat interview in today’s Irish Independent with Cillian O’Connor (which has already been mentioned in the comments). This is unashamedly forward-looking, which is very much as it should be and which, for me at least, gave me a bit of a shot in the arm when thinking about 2015. Tomorrow is another day and all that.

105 thoughts on “Looking back, looking forward

  1. Looking forward to Christmas and downtime with family and friends but can’t wait to get on the road again on Jan 4 to support the Red and Green it will be a very interesting year with new management and hopefully some new blood discovered for the white heat of battle later on in the Summer this team have given us so many days out in still extremely proud of them for the way they came back against Kerry in Croker in the drawn game and the way they fought to the bitter end in Limerick hopefully please God there are good days ahead

  2. I particularly liked the comment about a number of the minors pushing on.

    I was despondent when JH left but the likes of COC seem absolutely determined to maintain those standards and drive Mayo football forward.

  3. Would it be too early and arrogant to be looking to the semi final with dublin? I beileve thats what every single practice game and to an extent league game should be geared towards! I think we’ve earned the right to look that far ahead. Galway will improve, no doubt about that, the rossies will make shapes but ultimately barring a mass exodus of the squad we should reign supreme in connacht. Quarter finals seem to suit us so in my opinion its all leading to the dubs.

  4. I think that next year we should really concentrate on getting our own house in order. I think in 2013 we were too fixated with Donegal after the 2012 final. Then when we beat them we never reached the same level again. Then last year we probably got caught up in the Dublin hype and tried to ensure that we had a plan in place for them, to get revenge for the 2013 final. That game never happened. Kerry came from nowhere, they came in under the radar (imagine a team with 37 All-Ireland titles doing that!) and caught everyone off guard. Who knows how 2015 will turn out. Fixing the leaks in our roof will be key rather than checking out the leaks in our neighbour’s roof. We shouldn’t get caught up in the revenge factor again in 2015. Been the best team in the country in 2015, should be our main objective.

  5. I think it’s a bit too early to be talking about the dubs màyo need a few more forwards to fresheh things up a bit and with new management should be given time to do it.

  6. I think the forwards are there to win an ai, we just need a little bit of luck its plain to see. Maybe the likes of darren coen might grab the bull by the horns and just explode onto the scene, maybe new managment might bring the best out of him, just look at fellani at manchester utd. Theirs no major reconstruction to be carried out, just a little tweak here and there. Cormac reilly effectively won the all ireland for kerry never forget that!! along with paul durcans error…which is pure an utter luck on kerrys behalf. Id gladly face kerry again, would not fear them at all.

  7. We need to start conceding less goals. Our concession rate has been very high in league n championship. Talking about pressuring the kickpass in is sidestepping the issue. You can’t prevent over 75 mins of football at least ten good accurate kicks going in to the danger zone. With a guy like Donaghy you don’t even have to be that accurate as he has the ability to win unfavourable ball. A full back around the 6’2″ or 6’3″ mark is required. Alternatively a tall player pulled back as direct sweeper.
    Another thought is that a bit more height is needed in the half forward line. To be an effective kickout option.
    FBD should be about resting players n getting game time into new/fringe players.

  8. Can’t wait for the season to kick off in a couple of weeks. Its always an exciting time facing into a new season with the prospect of seeing new talent on display in the early rounds of FBD and national league and the hopes and dreams that this will finally be our year come championship. The added factor of our new management team makes it all the more appetising ! Roll on 2015 !!

  9. Juan, and (puckout if you are serious !!)
    Kerry have won twenty one senior finals in the last sixty one years and Mayo have won none in the past sixty four. The referees didn’t give them to Kerry and they didn’t take them away from Mayo, with any pinch of reality this will have to be firstly acknowledged.

    There have been many occasions where both teams won games because of very soft calls and many where they lost games because of some hard ones. Kerry had no right to win this All Ireland but they did. There is a reason for this, they had an opportunity to win it and they instinctively know that these opportunities have to be taken, full stop. Sometimes you don’t win them despite your best efforts but before the battle commences, that realisation that everyone must be at their best and that everyone can be trusted to do the job entrusted to them by their Manager always exists in a Kerry dressing room.

    No doubt that confidence is a big part of winning and I know that even after the five recent years the fear of what if we don’t win one with this team was starting to sneak into many a conversation. Very often a team weighted with expectation will in the darkest corner of their collective mind contemplate doubt. This current Mayo team are a fantastic team and should have won an All Ireland in the past three years,, was it doubt or was it a need for a number of extra talented players in several lines of their team, I think a little of both.

    Along with this years cavalry Kerry will have Tommy Walsh and Gooch back to give it one serious final lash for the “soon to be departed” players. If you are serious puckout I’d be putting a good mortgage into the offertory box. With respect to you and others, they lost a five point lead with four minutes of ordinary time remaining in Croker and a seven point lead in Limerick. I know it has happens on occasion, but the reality is that All Ireland winning teams rarely lose a grip like that on a game, whilst the lead was early in the replay the lead for Mayo in the drawn game came at a perfect time and should never ever have been relinquished.

    The new management team must develop another few men to get this team over the line, I was in the company of a few Kerry players from the last decade recently and the general opinion voiced was that if Mayo won either of the last two they would have had the belief to win this years one as well. The point I am making is that swagger, belief, arrogance or what ever you choose to call it is strengthening for one team and harmful to the other, once both teams believe it is well founded.

    Good luck in Connaught next year, and the League is only eight short weeks away so the whole thing starts again!!.

    I hope you all have a safe, peaceful and a happy Christmas and may football be our biggest worry in 2015.

  10. Gamechanger10, thank you for a very reasable and positive summary of the place we find ourselves in as Mayo supporters. I hope we can all keep your opinions and attitude in mind as we travel the country next Spring encouraging those new faces who will be given a chance to impress and being patient with the new management as they put their stamp on the campaign.
    As HopesSprings Eternal rightly says, being the best team in the country is the only goal now. And best of luck to PJ in the vote at the weekend.

  11. Venues for fbd are confirmed.

    NUIG – MacHale park
    Sligo IT – ballina
    Roscommon – Connacht GAA centre.

  12. I fully agree HopeSprings – so true how Mayo for the past few years looking back at their previous season only to get caught out by the unexpected. I remember there was a great post on that point on the blog while back – we’d reach the standard of the previous year but not push on beyond that and thus get caught out.
    It’s so difficult to see how ’15 will go but dying to get out on Jan 4th to see a few new faces.

  13. Ah jaysus, back to Bekan. I’ve only just dried out after last year!

    Is there not a ground free in either county with a covered stand in which that game could be played?

  14. That home fbd game is normally played in ballyhaunis but it was probably John Prenty idea to switch it to Bekan

  15. Agreed, Anne Marie. Most of us are still a bit damp when we think about last Jan’s visit.
    Cannot understand why it is not Ballyhaunis as it has proved to be an excellent pitch in all weathers and while the stand is not too big it does provide some shelter. Are they trying to justify the C of E’s existence? I always considered it too big and that smaller centres spread throughout the province would be much more useful. It’s a hell of a long way from Belmullet or Ballycastle [and a lot of other places] to Bekan
    Nor can I understand why John Prenty should want to move a game away from his own club ground. Are Ballyhaunis planning work on the ground or surrounds during the winter?
    If so Charlestown should be the obvious alternative.

  16. A new year Beckons.

    We “will leave 2014 at the River” regroup and start again.
    Hope and and a undying loyalty to the cause will keep us interested once again.

    2015 Fresh Blood will be introduced to the Team for the FBD but the real warriors will return in early spring refreshed from a longer than expected break ready to put good the wrongs of last year.

    My 2 wishes for the New year are
    1. Mayo for SAM (as always)
    2. Someone to put a sock into Liam O Neills mouth.

  17. It was due to be in Austin Stacks park under lights on the Saturday night but due to renovations taking place it had to be moved to Killarney on the Sunday. The pitch will be in far better shape in Fitzgerald Stadium than it would have been in Ausin Stacks in Tralee. An extra 30mins I know for the Mayo folk but it should be less punishing on the limbs of the players on the first round of the League !!

  18. Re the Kerry v Mayo game is now in Killarney.

    Killarney is definitely worth a visit the night before.
    I’d recommend it as a good place to go for a night out

  19. Re MacHale Park and the Rugby World Cup, if Connacht get a fair deal from the IRFU there should be two western venues. Assuming that the Sportsground in Galway is upgraded as one [what room is there on the site for expansion?] Castlebar is the logical second on capacity and facilities alone as the biggest all seater stadium outside Dublin. Converting Pearse Stadium to all seater would drastically reduce its capacity. It should make for a big boost to Ireland West Airport too.

  20. When choosing venues for competitions such as the rugby world cup accommodation size plays a big part in the selection process. Limerick,Cork,Belfast,Galway,Cork the five obvious choices.

  21. Most of what the county secretary has to say at the Convention today regarding the managerial debacle is to do with social media:

    “The whole affair was blown out of all proportions with Mayo grabbing many column inches in both local and national print media. The situation was also making headlines on the national airwaves. Yes it was not handled properly but the way that social media users joined with their comments was very sad and in many cases hurtful. Many of those who commented have no idea what it takes to run the affairs of the County Board and the fact that this is being done by volunteers seems to go unnoticed. The abuse that the chairman and indeed his family had to endure was uncalled for.”

  22. Just back from a long county convention. I now know where Pat Shortt got a lot of his material. A draw for a trailer load of sand was the most exciting part. Our new vice treasurer announced during his acceptance speech that “I’m not a great man with finances but I’m a great man to stand on a gate, which I’ve done hundreds of times”, reassuring to know that such capable men are in charge of a €2,500,000 budget.
    It was pointed out to the returning treasurer that the counties end of year profit were actually not €72k as stated but €150k higher by a qualified accountant. Our treasurer agreed with this and moved on.
    Our newly elected central council delegate announces during his acceptance speech that he “was unsure what the job actually entailed but that he’d give it his best anyway”

    Michael Connolly seems a competent man and I wish him every success, although he got some angry glances from the top table when he announced that he’d never claimed an expense from the county, I’d be guessing not too many of the others could say the same.

    plus ca change, plus c’est la meme chose.

  23. Ger,

    I didn’t pull out!!

    The County Board didn’t allow my name go forward for election as I was unable to attend Convention due to a long standing family commitment here in Dublin.

    As far as I can see there is no such rule in the GAA Rule Book http://www.gaa.ie/content/documents/Official%20Guide%202014%20Part%20I%281%29.pdf

    Rule 3.13 deals with nominations and once you are nominated then you are nominated to stand for election as far as I can see.

    The County Board had already breached Rule 3.15 by not issuing the Financial Statements one week in advance of Convention. They were only issued on Wednesday.

    Once I get a formal legal position on both points I will decide next steps.

    PJ

  24. Reading the convention report is almost 18 million still owed on MacHale now five years since it was built?

  25. That is an utterly depressing read, Liam.

    I believe there was a strong condemnation of things that were said on social media about the management appointment process. Social media includes you and I and all those who post on this blog, among others. People saying exactly the things that are being said in every living room in Mayo. There’s a strong sense of denial emanating from this event.

    PJ, Mayo GAA have stated on Twitter that you refused to accept the nomination for the position. I take it that’s not the case?

  26. The mind beggars belief. Surely if Liam and PJ are telling the truth here, and I’m in no way doubting they are, then we’ve been sold another pup. I find it uncomprehensible that the treasurer hadn’t his homework done regards the finance of the game here in the county.

    Best of luck with your legal probes PJ, I figured something was fishy as they said on the official website that ‘an issue had arisen’ and you couldn’t make it and your opponent Ger McHugh got elected.

  27. Liam, are you saying that at the convention it was stated that the 2014 accounts reported were incorrect by €150,000? By a qualified accountant? AND OUR TREASURE AGREED AND MOVED ON???Who did the accounts and signed off on them, Fr. Ted?

  28. The accountant in question is chairman of Castlebar Mitchell’s. He said that the way the accounts were presented would lead the average person to conclude that the profits were €70k odd and not €226k. Creative bookkeeping and presentation as opposed to dodgy dealings.
    Ballyhaunis won the sand in east mayo, you had to collect it and load it yourself though.

  29. I never refused to accept the nomination Ann Marie.

    GAA Rule Book is very clear on nominations. In addition to the Rule Book the County has Bye Laws and Bye Law 4 states the following…

    “Nominations for Conventions within the County shall be automatically withdrawn at the Convention unless the nominee indicates, in writing, that he/she is standing for election”

    The Bye Law doesn’t state who the nominee should write to! However, I can confirm that I wrote to all Clubs confirming my intention to run do as far as I am concerned I complied with the Bye Law.

    I just wonder how many more complied with this Bye Law!

  30. Who ruled that PJ was not a candidate at Convention, the outgoing or the newly elected Chairman? I sincerely hope that it was the outgoing man because if this is an indication of how the new man is going to carry on we are only getting deeper into the mire.
    It’s nice to know that the new Asst Treasurer is good at something. And we can only hope that the new Central Council delegate is a reasonably quick learner or the five year term may be up before he gets the hang of it.
    I hope the national press do not give the convention much attention as we can do without the ridicule which might result.
    Finally I would not be surprised to see a rerun as it appears that this convention was not held according to rule.

  31. Liam’s Report on the County Convention has given a great insight into the way the County Board works! Fellas just interested in holding office and gathering perks. I felt that the number of former and burnt out former officers putting their names forward for election was utterly disgusting. Give new blood a chance!

  32. I reckon that sand could come in handy for burying heads in. Its what a lot of people in our county seem to do.

  33. Any motions carried Liam? I finally downloaded the booklet today after I saw it on facebook earlier.

  34. Here’s Daniel Carey’s take on today’s events.
    http://www.mayonews.ie/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=21115:mike-connelly-is-new-mayo-gaa-board-chairman&catid=14&Itemid=100008

    PJ, it appears the confirmation in writing should have gone to the board?

    Mike Connelly says he and his brother have had to endure attacks because of their appointments/nominations, which is pretty awful to hear, because in my mind neither of them deserved that. I don’t buy the “nepotism” argument, never did, and I wish both of them the very best of luck in their new roles. They are both facing significant challenges of very different natures.

    Also glad to hear that any suggestions of financial confusion have been put to bed.

    Mayoforever, the incumbents putting themselves forward for re-election didn’t prevent new blood from putting their money where their mouths are and putting themselves up against them, so I think that point is a bit wide of the mark. The real story is the lack of competition for the posts.

    New year, new era. New management team, new chair. New beginnings? Only time will tell.

  35. I could do with a trailer load a sand if anyone know who has it.?
    Was it Dougal or Ted that signed off on the accounts.???
    God help us but I hope the team rise above this shite.
    In my club playing days we dident give a monkeys about what the club
    Officers and committees were doing we knew it was all oul boys talking
    Shite most of the time and sod all to do with what we were doing on
    The pitch.
    I just hope on some level that this applies to Mayo team next year

  36. Thank you PJ. I know the work you put in. I’ll not add to the above comments other than say as a county we get what we deserve. Democracy has spoken and Mayo meanders on, harmless in the final analysis. We will never trouble the silversmith. Good players and exciting runs will mask a multitude of incompetence . For some the FBD can’t come quick enough to pretend that we are the real deal. On we stumble, gather the few bob at the auld gate, use the auld tin box to gather another few bob at a function here and there. Who’d have thought the county needs to raise100Ks€K per year to service debt for the next decade before a ball is even bought. Methinks PJ had a near escape .

  37. Gerry G,
    How did you do as regards winning in your playing days? In my experience winning is easier when all pull together. The alternative is what we had in Mayo about 1992/93 and what Cork had about a decade later.
    Regards PJ not notifying his intention to stand, it seems a strange system. Normally in my experience the confirmation of intention to contest a position is at the time of nomination. It would indeed be interesting to know how many of the candidates for other positions had complied with the bylaw and whether the need to do so was notified to clubs when nominations were sought. It would not be the first time in GAA history a convenient but almost forgotten bylaw was dug out when somebody needed it

  38. Gerry G,
    it was both Dougal and Ted who signed off the accounts. Then they were placed in an envelope which was sealed with wax from Fr Jacks ears. Then the envelope was sent to Limerick of all places to be officially stamped by Bishop Len Brennan. Then the trailer load of sand turned up. So everything was done according to the bye laws. All above board. Everything rosy in the garden. Isn’t that great.

  39. It is easier to look for more money if you have not got any, I dont feel the chairman will last long in the gaa if he does not claim all his expenses, sorry pj did not make it, but might need to be made of rubber to be flexible enough for county board.i was fully behind jh and now feel we need to give our support to pat and noel, I dont think anyone is any doubt but that they have the best interests of mayo at heart

  40. As I stated in a previous blog “actions speak louder than words”. That is why P.J. didn’t turn up. All this bluster and bullshit about by laws etc is crap. All he had to do was be a member of GAA in Mayo, send his name for nomination to County Secretary with a backing of a GAA club. Even before the convention took place he should have notified the secretary of not being able to attend. All the stuff that was written in those blogs about what should and would be done and who would do it was a load of HOT AIR. I suppose they will now write in and say we should have another convention next week.
    The positive thing that we now have is a great chairman and vice chairman. Not fellows nearing or over pension age and they like musical chairs. Mayo County board have at last started with new blood and maybe next year another few of the “long established officers” may be replaced. If P.J. is available he will have plenty of time to have learned from his fiasco. Older and wiser.

  41. With respect True Grit you need to get your facts right before you come on with that type of abuse. I am a Member of Belmullet GAA Club and they submitted my Nomination in accordance with County Board protocol.

    With Willie Joes permission I am willing to upload a copy of my nomination and the letter I sent to the Clubs in Mayo in support of my intentions.

    I have emailed our County Secretary seeking clarification as to their decision…

    “Dear Secretary,

    I understand that at today’s Convention my nomination was deemed invalid on the grounds that I did not accept it? You might please confirm the County Boards official position on this? Can you also please provide support to your decision by way of reference to the GAA Rule Book and/or County Board Bye Laws.

    In my opinion the GAA Rule Book is very clear on nominations and I see no issue arising here. In addition to the GAA Official Rule Book I understand that the County Board has Bye Laws. Having reviewed the Bye Laws from the Mayo GAA Website I note Bye Law 4 as follows…

    “Nominations for Conventions within the County shall be automatically withdrawn at the Convention unless the nominee indicates, in writing, that he/she is standing for election”

    This Bye Law does not state who the nominee should write to!

    Is there another Bye Law which I have missed?

    I can confirm that I wrote to all Clubs confirming my intention to run so as far as I am concerned I complied with the Bye Law.

    Surely if the Bye Law fails to clearly state who the nominee should write to then I can’t see how I failed to comply with it given the fact that I wrote to the Clubs.

    Seeing as we are on the topic of rule compliance I would like to put on record that in my opinion the County Board breached Rule 3.15 from the GAA’s Official Rule Book by not issuing the Financial Statements one week in advance of Convention. As far as I understand the Financial Statements were only issued last Wednesday and reports from Convention appear to indicate some errors in the signed off audited accounts. Again, you might please confirm the County Boards position in relation to both points given the stated penalty for breach of this Rule.

    I await hearing from you at your earliest convenience.

    Regards,
    PJ Monaghan
    Mob: 087-221 6932
    Email: pjmonaghan@lepd.ie

  42. True Grit I was critical of some of your previous posts but the boy cried wolf here. It was very simple as you say to contact the Board. It was bluff and bluster I’m afraid and god only knows what the purpose behind it all was. Technicalities are grand but this is something that is not complicated. Very disappointing that I put my faith in the process PJ put out.

  43. I would like to see PJ get involved at some level. I believe he had a lot to offer Mayo football. Something for next year to consider. I fully support the new management team. They deserved their opportunity and I am glad they are getting their chance.

  44. Regardless of whatever confusion or other arose regarding PJ Monaghan’s notification to the board, we must not loose sight of the many points raised by PJ which would need careful examination by the new Co Board. Regardless of any personality issues or point scoring, the fact remains that a lot of issues need urgent attention. We all want the same thing for Mayo and we wish Noel and Pat all the best in this regard, but it would appear that a lot of dotting of I’s and crossing of T’s will be required in the meantime.

  45. Just a quick one on our new chairman, if he can’t take a few shoulder charges from the mayo people I wonder about his ability to deal with the dirty tackling at Croke park when we get sent to Munster to play a Munster team in a replay.

    Whatever “attacks” he and his brother had to endure they will have plenty more to deal with in the next year and I hope they are both up to the job.

    Bleating to the press about attacks hasn’t really endeared him to me.

  46. Fare play pj you had the balls to ask questions. Believe it or not true grit pj made change. paddy stepped down.reshuffle of county board to suit existing members.wake up people stop the nonsence.

  47. Re P.J. Monaghan. Simple fact you did not turn up, no point now in laying the blame on other people. A bit like “Mary Lou” all talk and no proof. It would be helpful if now we could move on and stand behind the people who were correctly elected by the votes they received. Don’t see the point in trying to bolt the door when the horse is gone. As to FDeelin the new faces are chairman and vice chairman, and looking at all the persons who put their names forward for elections they are all involved in Mayo GAA. P.J. Monaghan was the only new face and he got goose bumps at the last minute. It was open to every GAA club member to put their name forward for election and now its time to put up and shut up. We look forward to a new and maybe a better year in 2015. To all supporters who follow Mayo Football and to WJ may I wish everyone a Happy Christmas and peaceful 2014 and thanks for all the people who made 2014 a year to remember.

  48. PJ. The bye rule states that the nomination must be accepted in writing. I feel writing to the clubs did not fulfill this requirement. A reasonable person would have to say that you should have written to the secretary. That and not being at the convention would have to lead one to say that the Boards actions were not unreasonable. Your other questions though do have validity. Did the other nominees notify the secretary in writing? Can this question be brought up at the next delegates meeting? Was this question brought up at the convention?
    I think though that having a vice treasurer stating that he does not know a lot about finance is a complete joke. The South Board have for years been unable to issue receipts, bills, statements or anything to clubs to acknowledge their contributions and now this is heading towards county level. Other issues remain. The alternatives offered of older ex-officers returning to challenge seems false or contrived. The problem is where are the real alternatives? No one putting themselves forward – PJ as a sole lone runner is not really credible. I would finish by saying that by not writing to the secretary has, in my humble opinion, seriously compromised PJ as a credible alternative.

  49. True Grit I don’t think Willie Joe would take to kindly to your “put up and shut up” speak. The beauty of this site is, that we can all express our views in our own way and so long as we keep comments between the hedges as Willie Joe would say, then all’s well. I’m not defending PJ or anyone else here but instead of kicking the messenger, it will be of far more benefit to Mayo football going forward, if all energies are now targeted towards dealing with the many issues that have been raised in recent times, and fixing what appears from the outside to be a very accident prone Co Board.

  50. I think some of the comments and digs at PJ Monaghan are totally out of order and certainly appear to be coming from individuals who have vested interests. The comments are snide, cheap and immature and I quote….
    “PJ probably realised that he wouldnt be getting paid for his position and wouldnt be able to claim travel expenses either, i would say this is the reason for his no show”
    “he got goose bumps at the last minute”
    and there are many more.
    PJ is well able to defend himself but for those that are now twisting the knife in him, I ask you this. Do you not think that PJ raised vitally important questions that still have to be answered? Do you not think that the shelved Strategic plan made sense and should be implemented? Do you not think that his very public and admirable comments were made in the best interests of Mayo GAA?
    I, for one, take PJ’s explanation for missing the conference as an honest unavoidable occurrence. There are none of us here perfect, none of us without faults and failings, and certainly none of us in the position to degrade the reputation of a man who did his best to raise awareness of the malaise within the county board and the deficiencies in it’s structures. Until you walk in the shoes of the other man, you are not in position to judge him.
    Now, I believe the time has come to let the hare sit. Whether we believe that the right men are in the right positions at county board level or not is now totally irrelevant. It is what it is. We, as supporters, need to put all that behind us and clear the atmosphere for Noel and Pat to be allowed get on with their jobs. We can hope that the CB can operate with greater level of professionalism but, in truth, only time will tell on that. for now, the calender is marked and the countdown to the FBD begins.
    Hon Mayo.

  51. I’d just like to echo the sentiments expressed by Pebblesmeller. PJ is well able to defend himself but this site isn’t a place for people to take mean-spirited, vindictive pot-shots at others. While my inclination is always to let the debate flow, I’ve just had to delete a particularly nasty comment in this vein and will deal with others who transgress in the same manner.

  52. Good job on deleting the nasty comment Willie Joe!! its a shame some of the insults that are being written on this blog. I do feel however on some of your other blogs there have been even nastier comments that were aimed at the county board, shame some of them were not dealt with or deleted. Not saying they were only written on your blog WJ because there were far worse ones on other social media and print media.

    Its an awful disgrace that people have the need to insult fellow county people and especially those who have volunteered their time to the GAA. Hopefully we can all move on and stand together as a county!

    Just one word to PJ, I do not think its a good idea to press legal proceedings on the county board, wont you be taking away money from the county players (who are the most important) if the county board need to employ a solicitor?

  53. Some of the stuff being leveled at PJ here is very unfair. He had the gumption to put himself forward for this. If it was missed due to some bureaucratic process , whether through his own oversight or that of someone else, then I would be quite confident that he’s still done a whole lot more in terms of a contribution than many of his detractors.

    Anyway – whats done is now done, we need to get behind the team for 2015 and beyond.

  54. It didn’t take long for some posters here to knife PJ – and show their true colours in the process.

    All the man did was make an administrative error. The rapid assumption by some that this was cowardice on PJ’s part is just baffling to me.

    Read the Mayo News piece by Willie McHugh (http://www.mayonews.ie/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=21137:all-fairly-quiet-on-the-gaa-front-in-mayo&catid=14&Itemid=100008) – PJ’s clubmate tried to intervene on his behalf but was slapped down with rules and regulations. Doesn’t sound like PJ chickened out to me.

    Compare PJ’s treatment here with that meted out to Paddy McNicholas and you’d soon wonder who was the incompetent chairman and who was the honest broker trying to actually do something about the shambles that is our county board.

  55. I agree with your post pebblesmeller. Very well put. Some of the comments about PJ Monghan were a disgrace.

  56. I agree with Pebblesmeller on this. And while the outcome for PJ was ultimately unfortunate, he has my utmost respect for bothering to try. The sniping above and throughout various threads over the past few weeks really doesn’t become certain posters.

    I also agree strongly with Digits however on a general level – there is a big difference between insults and criticism, and I’m getting pretty fed up of the disdain for and dismissal by anyone connected with Mayo GAA or with the county board of “social media users”. It’s getting to a point where you can’t discuss anything in a negative light without it instantly – and unjustifiably – being labelled as “abuse”.

    Yes, there are certain users of social media that shouldn’t be allowed within 10 feet of a smartphone, who have no thought for the hurtful consequences of their hurtful tweets, but there have also been many thoughtful, considered suggestions made using facebook, Twitter, blogs etc., and some very constructive, legitimate criticisms made too. Not out of badness, or a petty desire to criticise and knock people’s efforts but because people want the best for their county. But if you’re a social media user (that’s everyone on this blog, by the way), you’re somehow being implicated as complicit in abuse if you dare to criticise the administration.

    There’s a serious whiff of shooting the messenger off it which is unfortunate, because as any good marketer knows, if you can put your own bias (and defensiveness) aside, and listen to what conders are saying about your brand, you may actually learn something useful. And the same logic applies regardless of whether you’re paid, or a volunteer.

    Anyway, that’s my two cents. Pebblesmeller is absolutely correct – as he usually is – and it’s time to start looking forward and getting behind the lads for 2015. We’ll be starting to rally the troops over on Club ’51 for the FBD (4 weeks and counting down!) so if anyone is interested in helping out this year or flying a flag for us get in touch, we’ve plenty of jobs going and the pay is great! 🙂

  57. Is DavyG saying we had an incompetent chairman? That is very harsh and an a personal nsult to the man himself! I feel he did a good job especially when it is a voluntary job! Yes some social media and press were critical some of it was not needed some of it was.
    JH did a great job but you must also consider that the county board worked well with him too as in the four years we had Paddy as chairman mayo were in 2 all Ireland semi final and two all Ireland final and the minors also won an All Ireland too!

  58. Great post Anne-Marie. Agree 100%.

    Angela, I love the usual sympathy for the “voluntary jobs” people. A lot of those are promoting their own egos and if they feel insulted, let them step down, simple. Voluntary or not, they have a responsibility to their position and if they are failing that, they deserved to be criticized; actually they should expect it.
    You may feel he did a good job and others may feel he did a bad job. Both are only opinions and people are entitled to have their opinions.
    As for the “harsh and personal insults”, I have my tissues out!!! Paddy had zero input into Mayo’s success on the field. Happy Christmas…

  59. Whii would like we should be minded to acknowledge that most positions are voluntary , they should certainly be professional, I think we would all agree they fell below that standard last year. In relation to pj he seems to bring something different to the table, I feel there should be room for him,

  60. Angela, the manner in which the current managerial team were appointed, featuring a bone-headed ‘solo run’ by the then chairman, does not suggest competence to me. His subsequent apology and resignation would appear to back that up.

    Have another read of his statement on the matter (http://www.mayonews.ie/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=20748:paddy-mcnicholas-the-statement-in-full&catid=14&Itemid=100008) and let us know how impressed you are.

  61. There are many who would argue that success for the county’s footballers came despite the county administration, not because of it. I’m not sure that’s entirely fair, but no-one can deny that tension did exist during the Horan era, and indeed during his predecessors’ times. And while tensions are to be expected from time to time, and indeed can be conducive to more productive outcomes and healthier working relationships in the long term, it’s rather telling that this has been a theme down the ages, despite the passing of time and a series of different management teams.

    And our dirty linen has been washed in public on far too many occasions. Contrast this to the Kerry optics. Down in the Kingdom you’d think everything runs like a well-oiled machine and it’s rainbows, lollipops and more importantly, pots of gold all over the gaff. And maybe it does. But if they’re arguing, they’re sure as hell telling no-one outside the county about it.

  62. Having seen some of the vitriol thrown at PJ perhaps Willie Joe should invite the man himself an opportunity to place on record his own views on the final act at the Convention. By the way I agree fully with Willie McHugh Mayo News. The disconnect between what is said by club delegates at county board and what I hear on the ground couldn’t be further apart.

  63. i see gavin duffy is on todays indo saying that he wants to be involved in 2015, good for him and good for us, start him in the fbd at fullback for a half a game and see how he looks in an actual game. He may be an option for a particular type forward that we could not contain last august. Or even try him at ff and do the high ball thing, just like they do to us when they want results.
    What are the chances that c mort will be playing for Mayo in 2015? Hes definitely putting out the message, but why the hell doesnt he just call connelly and holmes and talk directly rather than national media?

  64. I’d love to see Gavin at full-back for a game I have to say, but that’s not based on any current insight on his game or his preferences or his mobility, just the sheer size of him!

  65. Yes would like to see him prosper, though he talks about the Galway club scene as being a bit of a frustrating one in relation to game time also.

    And, in the Indo also, interesting to see what James Kavanagh had to say about training with Galway: scratching the surface compared to Kildare. What an indictment. He expects K. Walsh to address this.

  66. Still am totally confused as to the legality of Gavin Duffy playing for Mayo. I do not know how he qualifies.

  67. Rober,

    Rules 6.3 to 6.5 OG Part 1 covers rules re transfers and declarations for Club/county. Gavin”s first club was Ballina Stephenites and his first county was Mayo. So under rule he is entitled to declare for either or both, Ballina and Mayo. He does not have to declare for Ballina to play for Mayo.
    Any player is entitled to play for either his first club/county or the county of his current residence subject to transfer or declaration. Declaration is where he wishes to return to his first club/county and does not require sanction by any other authority.
    This has been the rule for at least 50 years unless I am very, very much mistaken.

  68. Andy D you may well be totally correct but Gavin needed to have played adult football with Ballina prior to his rugby career to be now eligible. did he play adult football with Ballina or was it all underage?

  69. Ann Marie is right and I have been saying this for a long time. The language and conduct of some of the social media posters merely serve to weaken the case being made by the social media commentators who are fair, kind and even handed in their commentary. I believe that most (all?) people who serve on the county board do so out of good intentions even if they sometimes get it wrong. The manner of opposition is as important as the tenacity or strength of the case being promoted. Despite what some groups might say in order for opposition to be effective it needs to have some effective popular support. Mad commentary allows the board to say ‘lads these guys are mad look what they are saying – poor us having to deal with these headers’.

  70. That’s it in a nutshell, Sinabhuil. Many of the criticisms of social media are based on classic examples of playing the man, not the ball – and once you get personal, your argument immediately loses credibility. And that’s fair enough really – once you start calling someone you’ve never met a fool, from behind the safety of your keyboard, no-one is really obliged to listen to you.

  71. @rober I am pretty sure his last couple of games of football before he turned pro with Connacht were with the Ballina seniors and I think his last game was for the Stepehnite seniors v Knockmore in Knockmore. I would be 99% sure he played a few games at CHF for the seniors during the summer before he turned pro in Rugby.

  72. Rober,

    Read the rules. They state clearly that a person’s first club is that at which they played U12 or above including Go Games provided they were not more than two years under that age limit, i.e. if he only played for Ballina age 10 his first club is Ballina. Therefore his first county is Mayo. He has the choice, having transferred to Salthill/Knocknacarra of playing for either Galway or Mayo.

  73. I have good time for Gavin Duffy. He was a top player for mayo at underage and he was a fearless and skilful rugby player for Connacht, Ireland & harlequins.

    However I do think he is past his best in both codes and don’t feel he has anything to offer on the playing field. Gaelic Football has changed a lot and the pace of some players is frightening. I can’t see how Gavin could live with the pace. His knowledge of professionalism in sport would be helpful alright in any code but that’s as far as his contribution should go IMO. Maybe he’ll prove me wrong but I really doubt it….

  74. Sure there’s no harm in giving him an opportunity in the FBD. He has to be tried at some stage. Or else it’s pointless him being in the panel.

  75. Correct me if I’m wrong but JH didn’t have him on his match day 26 during 2014 campaign…. He wasn’t considered by salthill in some of their championship games either…. I feel younger players deserve a shot in the FBD rather than a player who because of his age is past his best. As I’ve said previously he has something to offer as he was a professional athlete for many years and his experience could be more than helpful with younger players.

  76. Patriot
    You may be right, and maybe there is a young lad somewhere but I can’t name him, that can meet the physical power of the likes of donaghy or tommy Walsh and beat them in a 50/50 situation. You just can’t beat power. Plus you must remember Duffy was a professional and wouldn’t be shy or easily intimidated.
    Or even let Duffy in to ff to give the opposition something to think about, high ball in and he has the strenght to hold any back off long enough to make things happen.

  77. The round 3 fbd game against the rossies has already been switched to machale park, from no protection from rain to plenty but surely theses type of pre season games should be given to other grounds in Mayo?

  78. Other grounds now get no consideration at all, a game under lights in Aughamore or Ballinrobe on a Friday night would be great.

  79. Great to see Cillian enjoying his football but if he played for Kerry I would be concerned for his safety playing against a few of the backs lining out for one or two of those teams. He is a class act and they bring a very different edge to the table when it comes to extra talented forwards !!!! I hope he is safe and lining out for Mayo at the critical stages of 2015.

  80. Cillian faced Peter Crowley and Shane Enright, the two Kerry defenders, in the championship this year and I’ll tell you they are no angels on the field of play, far from it actually. Below is an extract from the former referee John Bannon’s piece in the Examiner after the Mayo v Kerry replay:

    Reilly’s officiating lacked consistency

    In the 11th minute, Peter Crowley drove his head down into Boyle and yet Kerry were awarded the free. A correct penalty was given to Mayo in the 17th minute but it should have been a black card, and therefore a red, for Shane Enright as he had picked up a yellow earlier in the game. Kerry should have been down to 14 for the remainder but Enright was free to make another foul in the 21st minute on Aidan O’Shea before Kerry wisely replaced him.

    Crowley and Enright’s primary job is to target the opposition’s best forwards, so you’d reckon that Cillian has learned a lot from playing against those two lads. Cillian is well able to look after himself.

  81. The referee stopped the play after Crowley had a suspected head injury after the impact, the ball was not turned over remember, in truth Kerry were in a wonderful goal scoring position from the ball that was kicked in after that clash.
    If Cormack O Reilly was commenting on a mayo game how would you feel ??? I think you would not be impressed as you would feel that he had a bias towards Mayo after the (second) semi final (not the quarter final as he gave Cork a torrid time). Bandon where Kerry were concerned was a consistently terrible referee, in my part of the world McQuillian and Bannon were cut from the same cloth, all referees have a bad day now and again but these two consistently saddled us here in the Kingdom. I remember we were playing Dublin in a semi final and Tommy Griffin ( pulled by the arm and stopped ) was fouled in a gimme position in the forward line, the whole of Croker including the Dubs audibly gasped and even Bannon obviously clenched as it was so obvious but he didn’t blow,,,, in Kerry everyone knows that Bannon has issues with Kerry, in any assessment where Kerry are concerned he blatantly shows his bias. The vast amount of referees do not have agendas going out on the field and when I cool down I will acknowledge that fact but I don’t have much time for McQuillian but I have absolutely no regard whatsoever for that incompetent Bannon. He does not have the strength of character to be faithful to the responsibility of his trust. As stated some refs have frustrated me and indeed broken my heart but I honestly believe I have only ever in the last forty odd years that I have been attending games believed that there was a particular agenda swaying the judgement of the ultimate arbitrator. Bannon holds that title,,, just check his assessments of games in which Kerry have been involved, there is a frightening consistancy and it’s in colours other that green and gold..

  82. Gamechanger,

    I don’t know anything about Bannon’s analysis of the semifinal replay and it’s irrelevant anyway as is any perceived [by Kerry] bias against Kerry since he is retired from refereeing.
    What cannot be denied, and I have not heard anybody, Kerryman or otherwise try to do so, is that Shane Enright should have received black cards twice, for fouls on Andy Moran and Aiden O’Shea subsequennt to his already received [and well deserved] yellow.
    Another thing which cannot be denied is the silence of Paddy McEneaney, referee coordinator, spokesman and defender because he knew as well as every other unbiased observer that Reilly’s performance was indefensible

  83. See o connors interview on independent that’s some schedule for him college football and McKenna cup in January he will be busy

  84. Andy d I agree totally that Enright should have received a black card for that tackle on Cillian and nobody could argue otherwise. O Reilly made mistakes on both sides but I think McStay didn’t do either himself or Mayo any favours on the Sunday game, to go over a game and cherry pick instances where he felt Mayo were hard done by was short sited in my opinion. I know he tried to show impartiality by showing a token few from Kerry as well but his red and green glasses were in sharp focus. The reason Mayo lost that game is that they were beaten up a stick around the middle of the park, the ball going into the Kerry forward line was very ripe as a result. Anyway there is little over two weeks to the start of 2015 so it will all start again,,!!

  85. It seems a bit ironic that a Kerry man purports to have concern for a Mayo forward coming up against some hard, tough tackling Northern defenders, considering some of the challenges the Kerry lads made down in Limerick. Concern for the safety and well being of the Mayo lads was the last thing on the Kerry players minds that day! But hey, the 2014 season is over, Kerry did what they did. Roll on 2015 and may the best team win out, hopefully we have learned a lot of very hard lessons this year, that we can put to good use next year…..

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