When one League ends, another starts

I came across some numbers recently from a Gaelic statistics website and I was shocked with what I saw. MacHale Park has not been a fortress for the Green and Red when it comes to the National Football League.

The study done by Gaelicstats.com (here) has assessed every point gained in the National Football League by all eight teams in each division. Since 2011, Mayo have played 25 of their League games at home. They have lost more than they have won in MacHale Park (11W, 12L). They drew twice also in that time and have picked up a total of 24 points from 25 matches in the six year period, giving them a point average of 0.96.

It leaves them 25th on the list with only the likes of Wicklow, Carlow and Carlow languishing below them with averages less than 0.8. Unsurprisingly, Dublin have the best home record in the league and have only lost three times in Croke Park in 26 games, giving them an average of 1.65 points.

Mayo’s away record reads the exact same from 25 games as their home record totalling an average of 0.96 on the road also. However, that point average means that they’re the 9th best team on the list for travelling with our neighbours Roscommon, sitting pretty on top with a 1.38 average. Our other neighbours, Sligo are the worst team at grinding out a win on the road, winning only four of their matches with an average of 0.42 points.

Mayo have finished 5th in the League in the last three years in a row and four times overall since 2011. They have finished 4th on two occasions and their best placed finished was in 2014 when they finished 3rd. On that occasion, they clocked up nine points, the highest total in the six-year period while their lowest points total came in 2011 when Mayo only managed five points.

Our league form certainly hasn’t been the best, but it seems like we’re just happy to be in Division One and, as long as we stay there, that’s all that matters.

The end of one league season was met with the start of another league season as the Mayo football league threw in. Round 2 took place last weekend and this is how some of the Mayo county players got on in the Division 1A.

Ballintubber were head and shoulders above Crossmolina on Saturday evening and that advantage was partly down to the scoring of Cillian O’ Connor. The Mayo forward notched up 2-4, with three of those points coming from frees and the two late goals coming within a minute of each other. Conor Loftus featured for Crossmolina and popped over a point for his side and Alan Dillon had a forty minute run-out the ‘Tubber.

Aghamore also grabbed a comfortable win on Saturday evening against Charlestown with Fergal Boland getting 1-4 of their 2-12 score-line. Tom Parsons was ruled out of the game with a finger injury which was a huge blow to Charlestown and Brendan Harrison anchored the middle of the park for Aghamore.

Garrymore and Ballaghaderren could only share the spoils in their round two tie. The evergreen Andy Moran was Ballagh’s top scorer with seven points, five from a free and one from the ’45 line. Shane Nally was ruled out of the game after picking up an injury against Breaffy the week before.

Ballina had a sixteen-point win over Bohola Moy Davitts. David Clarke was solid between the sticks and kept his second clean sheet in the league. Ger Cafferkey played the full 60 minutes in his second match after returning from a long-term injury which is welcomed news for Mayo supporters. Evan Regan pitched in with the Ballina scoring, popping over four points with three of those coming from placed kicks.

A single point was all that separated Davitts and Hollymount-Carramore with Colm Boyle’s Davitts coming out on top. Boyle hit two points for his side, one of which was a superb effort from outside the ’45 metre line. Stephen Coen lined out in his usual centre half-back position for Holly-Carra putting in a tight defensive performance for his team.

An Aidan O’ Shea goal two minutes after the restart was crucial in separating Breaffy and Claremorris. In fact, all the O’ Sheas got on the scoresheet for Breaffy, with a goal for Aidan, two points for Conor, one of which was a free in the dying minutes when the sides were level, and one point for Seamus.

It was a great weekend of football action in Mayo’s Division 1A and great too to see so many of the county players on the scoresheet for their respective sides.

12 thoughts on “When one League ends, another starts

  1. Great to hear from you again Darragh. This is my favourite time of the year with club action taking centre stage. I believe that our strategy for the National league is the correct one and it has served us well. Not too surprised at our home league record. It’s our home championship record that is the important yardstick, and that one is right up there in the last few years.

  2. Any opinions in what team should start for our game against Sligo/New York.
    Team I would like to see start for it :

    1.David Clarke

    2.Brendan Harrison
    3.Ger Cafferkey
    4.Keith Higgins
    5.Lee Keegan
    6.Colm Boyle
    7.Patrick Durcan

    8.Seamus O’Shea
    9.Tom Parsons

    10.Shane Nally
    11.Aidan O’Shea
    12.Diarmuid O’Connor
    13.Kevin McLoughlin
    14.Danny Kirby
    15.Cillian O’Connor

    Would like to see Nally and McLoughlin in 10 and 13 as there left footed and can score. Would like to see Kirby rewarded for his league form but don’t think he has the legs for midfield for the likes of Fenton or Jack Barry. So a full forward target man role would suit him better and would free up Aidan to go out the field where he is at his best.Much prefer to see Andy coming of the bench when the game opens up as he always gives us a lift.

  3. Commiserations to our Hurlers, that was a great performance by Keith Higgins, some operator for sure. @ th, I like the look of that line out. I can’t think of any change I would make to that.

  4. I think I would keep Nally in reserve as he can play anywhere. COShea or Loftus. Otherwise looks good on paper. Has Aidan O Shea the legs for centre half forward. Im thinking of Kilkenny or Gainey, how does O Shea?
    Hopefully you are close to starting fifteen.

  5. @TH – thats a pretty formidable starting XV, although I do think we might see one or two left to come in off the bench to unleash some extra wattage as the game enters the final quarter. We’re more likely to see SOS listed among the subs with Aidan starting at midfield. I do like the idea of Nally starting in half forward line and Kirby at FF. Andy to come in off the bench in the final 20 mins perhaps – at 33 we need to see his contributions best served as impact sub for these upcoming crunch games.

  6. @OnTheDitch I don’t kno I thought Nally was the most in form player over the last 2 league games v Tyrone and Donegal. Plays with the head up and can give good ball inside which is something we lack.Boland who started well in the league struggled in the last 2 games.I just think Aidan is at his best at centre forward in the 1st half of the Kerry game in Limerick in 2014 he when he ran at Kerry they couldn’t live with him.Peter Crowley had to continuously foul him.When him and Cillian clashed heads was when we lost that game and probably cost us the All Ireland.

  7. Your team def worth a try. Pity we didnt see Kirby at ff in league.
    I do think theres a lot more to come from Conor O Shea. Just seems to lack a little bit of self believe. Any he has chance to shine in a few club matches and that should count for something.
    The bench will win matches. We need strong bench. One thing Galway had in win over kildare

  8. Ballina 2-16 Kiltane 1-4 with 15 to go!! The Stephenites quietly building an exciting young team heading to their third win from three in the league.

  9. The half time score was bizarre. Aghamore 5-1 Crossmolina 2 pts.
    5-1 is a bit mad not to have at least 2 pts on the board. When those young Aghamore forwards become fully grown men watch out.

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