Matthew Ruane our MOTM from last night’s game

Photo: MichaelMaye.com

Last night was a frustrating one all round from our perspective, in a game where we lost momentum just at the point when we looked well set to complete a successful comeback against Galway.

A number of our players found the going difficult last night but one man who can be more than happy with his performance is midfielder Matthew Ruane. In only his second start in a competitive fixture at senior level for the county the Breaffy player put in a real hard-working shift at centre-field. It was a performance capped by a great point from play to spark our comeback after half-time.

Mattie’s strong display earns him this week’s Man of the Match award. He wins the award with 35% of the vote, with Jason Doherty next on 17% and Aidan O’Shea on 9%. Well done to Mattie and here’s to more of the same from him in the future.

56 thoughts on “Matthew Ruane our MOTM from last night’s game

  1. For self flagulation I’m now watching League Sunday, it’s not any better second time around I’m afraid

  2. Well done, Matthew Ruane! Here’s to more of the same in the coming months and years.

  3. Very well deserved by Mathew.. Mathew looks well set to complete for a starting position in the Championship, and Fionn McDonagh as well..Looks like James Horan is committed to mixing up the team and giving Chance’s to several young players, and indeed some older player’s.. . It may not have been the best selection in order to beat Galway, but as a way of finding some badly needed new talent, we have done reasonably well.. I think Galway probably done more research into beating Mayo than visa versa… Given that Shane Walsh, what a player! was taken off versus Kerry the previous Sunday, with a pretend injury, when Galway had a great chance of beating Kerry in the final quarter..It backfired on Galway last week, but I wouldn’t give Galway a chance of beating Mayo without Shane Walsh on Saturday night.. anyhow I don’t think that James Horan or the Mayo team were in any way fooled by it. I actually taught that, with the game probably out of our own reach against Dublin at halftime, and Paddy Durcan was withdrawn, that Paddy was being minded for the winnable Galway game.. When I seen Paddy Durcan in front of me in the stand on Saturday, I knew my theory was wrong. . But definitely Galway were up to their tricks, and Shane Walsh wasn’t even on initial 26 Player’s submitted… and we are probably still looking for new talent, If we found one more new player, or an older regained good form.. We would be doing great.. Eoin O Donaghue and Conor Louftus are probably not fully established Player’s just yet, We know for sure that both are very good Player’s.. . So the cup is Half Full!

  4. I’m beginning to slowly recalibrate after Saturday but hadn’t the stomach to watch League Sunday last night. I’ll stay away from the pod until tomorrow too so that I can fully absorb it in as painless a fashion as possible.

    One thing stands out for me in the aftermath – surely if JH was absolutely intent making sure we take down Galway he would have started Andy? Or even Reape given he’s been playing steadily recently? This is not a criticism of JH – just an observation.

    It would seem to me this game may have been built up to be far more important to us than to KH and his team.

  5. Bang on @rock .. That wasn’t our strongest starting team available on Sat ..Should have won it but Christ it was hard to read so much negative stuff on hear about management and this team going nowhere / finished . Don’t think we will win the All Ireland but do think we will win Connaught and whoever beats us later in the summer will be a good team .

  6. Well done to Mathew Ruane. He’s having a great year and hope he continues to develop in to a great player for us.

    I would have thought that the 10 minute period where galway were down to 13 would have been the perfect time to have connor Loftus on the pitch. Think he could have stretched galway for that 10 minutes with some accurate passes.

    My only gripe with connor is that he seems to get pushed off the ball far too easy and maybe not dogged enough in winning 50 50 ball. If he could improve on this he would be a major bonus to us.

    I don’t mind if we loose a few league games but I would far happier if we were loosing them playing a game that looked like we were playing to a specific game plan. At present we don’t seem to have much structure to our game. It might not take much to add that but it sure would be nice to see some structured play before the league finishes.

  7. Since Saturday evening there has been a number of excuses being mentioned to explain the result. Heavy training being done, injured players, team selection, Management decision/lack of decisions, its only the league, Mayo are a summer team, We were experimenting so the result didn’t matter (the result did matter against Galway who we haven’t beaten in years, YEARS), lots of ifs and buts etc etc. I don’t believe any of these. from a position of 1 pt down with 15mins to go with a strong wind at our backs Mayo should have won comfortably. At this point in the match Mayo showed a serious lack of communication and direction on the field and there were enough senior players on the field to guide the team home, O’Shea, Moran, Keegan, Higgins, DOC, Doherty all should know what to do in this position but no one took responsibility when it really mattered. Saturday night really showed how important Cillian O’Connor is to Mayo and why he is Captain. Some have called for him to be benched because he missed a couple of frees but he is the driving force of the team and without him the team looks lost.

    I am confident Mayo will improve and be competitive in the championship but Cillian O’Connor needs to be on the field.

  8. Agree on Cillian its would be the difference if we could get him to have a year like Andy had in 2017 or Lee had in 2016.

  9. I don’t know whether to laugh or cry when I see some of the hyperbole here, when we win a few games we are unbeatable and when we lose a few we are terrible. There was even a poster maintaining that we were the third best team in connaught!!! Honestly I despair if we lose next week to Kerry (Most Probable) will that push us back to fourth?? sure Leitrim are flying maybe they will overtake us!!!. And this judgement was based on Roscommon being somewhat more competitive against Dublin than we were. This did not take into account that when we played the Dubs they were playing at home in croker, they were coming off a defeat and hurting, had 2 weeks to prepare for us, and no matter what anyone thinks the dubs still see us as a bigger threat than most teams as we have ran them closer than anyone which meant they really targeted a win to put us in our place and possibly quell any good run of form we could gain momentum from.

  10. Well done Mathew. Fine athlete and Consistently good since making the team and definitely worth your place come championship time.

  11. Well done to Ruane, has been excellent in his outings so far. V disheartening loss again on Saturday, not pushing on from a point down with the wind with 15min to go was a real kick in the stones, thought Coen showed well despite a couple of wild attempts near the end, would like to see more of him in better conditions too. AOS again slowing play dwn way too much, its time to play him at midfield, his. natural position FFS.

    Hard to see us getting anything down in Tralee, would like us to play with a sweeper in this one and give them wing backs full licence to bomb forward, our kick passing game has also gone to pot. Walsh has the potential to cause havoc for our full back line. Would go with something along the lines of this:

    Clarke
    O’Donoughue-Harrison-Barrett
    McLoughlin
    Durcan-Plunkett-Higgins
    AOS- Ruane
    McDonagh-C O’Connor (if fit)-D’O’Connor
    Reape-Coen

    Subs-Hennelly-Coen-Crowe-Keegan-Boyle-Vaughan-SOS-Doherty-Boland-Loftus-A Moran-Diskin

    Think Keegan, Boyle and Doherty can sit this one out, have played plenty of football so far this year and might need them fresh if we have to get a result against Monaghan in last game. Cillian played CHF for Mayo for quite a chunk of Horan’s first tenure and did well, picked out some fantastic passes, only other two players I think we have that are capable of playing in this position with effect are McLoughlin and Loftus so think it’s worth another try, Coen and Reape in well able to take a score given good ball. Would like to see Diskin get a good run in this game too. would play DOC as a 3rd midfielder more than a wing forward. I think with having Plunkett at CHB and McLoughlin as sweeper would allow Durcan and Higgins to bomb forward and cause problems. McLoughlin can also help out with any ball played into Walsh who I’d expect to have an edge on Harrison. Barrett and O’Donoughue needed for this one as both are tight man markers.

  12. If we can’t call being 1 pt down with a full 22 mins of playing time left with a gale force wind at our backs and not even getting a draw terrible, then we might as well stop any logical commentary. Remember there was 7 mins of injury time.
    We are blooding young players and that is a positive. But, in-game there needs to be more evidence of composure and game mgmt from the senior players. The young players need better leadership from the senior players.
    – 1-1 conceded to a 13 man team and going on all out attack with it only possible to score from within 21 yards.
    – Completely unaware of the time on the clock in the 7th min of injury time. That’s unacceptable at this level. There was 42 mins played by that point. Even if you hadn’t asked the ref, how can you not feel time is nearly up by 42 mins!!
    – Giving up 3 frees at the end of the game to miss the draw (whatever about the win, missing a draw was inexcusable)
    – Being narky with the ref during the night and throwing angry tantrums. Our young players observed that.

  13. Agree with a lot of that Mayomad. Composure was a critical ingredient and it sure was missing in those last 11 minutes of normal time. It has to be said, Galway are very good at this aspect of game management against us and we showed terrible lack of discipline in conceding frees and then mouthing resulting in difficult frees becoming much easier. Shane Walsh did very well with these, though I think overall he promises more than he delivers.

    Yes Cillian is important, but remember against Galway in the league last year he got the line!

  14. Ruane is certainly staking his claim for a starting berth, which given the absence of Tom Parsons, we really need someone in that area who will do a job.
    As regards the game, bad night all around again. Very poor game management compared to exceptional game management by Galway.
    Kickouts bad, giving away silly frees at the end and really we should have been emptying the bench in the last 15 minutes. You can certainly see why Boyle was getting subbed off at 55 minutes while Rochford was on the sideline.
    But that really wasn’t the worst of it, what was worst was getting the difference down to a single point and then not scoring for 20 minutes. Galway were definitely the cuter of the 2 teams on show and their Goal while down to 13 men was certainly the winning of the game – that was quite unforgivable on our part to allow that to happen.
    We looked like a team that’s just not playing well as a team – too disjointed, little clear direction or game plan from what I can see.
    On the flip side, that is all stuff that can be improved upon so as long as some learning is taken from this, it’s not all doom and gloom. Cillian still has to return and that should provide some impetus to an improvement on current form which seems to be the source of much negative view, based on the results of 2 games.

  15. Agree with JP. We had the momentum, wlittled a 7 point lead down to one and then inexplicably hit the wall, when we really should have pushed on to a comfortable win. Agree too, it was our senior players who didn’t offer the leadership we required. A lot of soul searching to be done.
    Moving on, the game against Kerry will now be our yardstick for where we are at present.
    Hopefully our forwards will be sharper. I cannot see any great change in our pattern of play whereby attacking moves pan out laterally. If that’s the way then we need to be able to take long range points. If there is one area of play where AOS needs to improve, it’s in his taking scoring opportunities. I can’t remember when he last pulled the trigger. Practice practice practice.
    Not much between Coen and Reape at this point bar Coen having a better attitude. Hopefully they will develop into Comer type players that offer us a direct route as an option.
    Further we have to look at creating goal scoring chances. Our build up play has become so laboured that defences have lots of time to get organised and close out any goal attempts.
    Bit of soul searching for management too before we size up to kerry

  16. Discipline was our problem. Leaving players one on one near the goal has been a problem all year – remember Roscommon goal at the end of that game. Discipline in the tackle not present. Too frantic in the second half when cooler heads was what was needed. Shoot for points. We had was more possession than Galway when playing with the wind but we did not engineer shots like they did. Now after saying that these are league games. We have virtually lined out completely different teams for each match. I really hate this joy then depression swing after each game. We have never taken the league serious so don’t panic. Seeing Galway players hugging and kissing their supporters after the game was funny. This is a problem we used to have too. Going daft to beat Galway and then flop in the next game. What the match has proved to me is that there is little point in going to these league games. It would be much better for me to put the money expended into my club rather than into Croke Park’s pocket to further enhance the chasm of funding between the city and rural counties.

  17. Pat Spillane spouting rubbish again. Highlighting how 16 year olds should be allowed to play senior club football. Player welfare ignored because it suits some clubs in his area. No way should 16 year olds play senior. Some 16 year olds nowhere near the level of physicality to cope with senior football. No point saying leave it to the managers. Some managers would play their granny if they thought they could fulfill a fixture. Also he calls the Donegal motion as unfair and anti Dublin. Just more of the old boy brigade. The Kerry Dublin love in continues.

  18. A few posters are calling for Mayo to demonstrate a clear game plan or style of play. I’m not sure about the rest of ye, but that’s the last thing I want to see in March.

    I’m fairly confident they know what they want to do with the squad they have and understand what they’ll need to do to deliver. They’re clearly looking at what they have in terms of experienced players, and what they might have in relation to the young lads. Ruane, Reape and McDonagh are all showing very well. Plunkett and Diskin are also in the frame. That’s not a bad return this early in the new regime.

  19. One other positive thing I noticed, James Carr was togged and looking strong and lean. He is probably the quickest big man on the panel.

  20. I think we have to take the positive’s from the league so far, we have unearthed a few players that makes our future brighter. Its not all doom and gloom. James Carr could be a big addition,With him Diskin, Reape 20-22 years of age they can only improve. Like the look of Plunkett, an intelligent player, we have enough headless chicken. A few others may not be ready this year but this experience will stand to them.

    I see in the Western that a decision will be made regarding the game in New York on Thursday regarding ticket sales. What some people may not realize, there is current construction going off at the venue. The bar and the function room are being knocked with plans to rebuild. This will take the guts of a year, so construction fencing will take up alot of room behind the goal previously used. This will reduce the attendant. I know a few on here have been there before, so you can invision that impact it would have.

  21. Just adding in some detail on that loss of momentum and how the game swung away from us, here’s what I have from the notes I took during the match.

    I timed Andy’s point from the forward mark at 55 minutes, that made it 0-10 to 1-8. Jason Doherty then had a free (for a foul on Kevin McLoughlin) that came back up off the upright (with no-one inside in case there was a rebound) and after that Andy hit a pot shot wide off the left. Walsh then got the first of his three late frees for them, following a foul by Boyler, on the 61 minute mark. We had two further wides after that, one from Diarmuid after Boyle had made a great upfield burst, and the other from Darren Coen who shot wildly wide from distance after a slow, lateral build-up. Another Boyle foul (this was the one after which it took Walsh nearly 5 minutes to get back on his feet) and that Walsh free, as normal time ended, put them three up. Darren Coen then hit another bad wide, after more slow build-up play, before Lee Keegan gave away another 14-yard free, which Walsh also converted. When we finally scored again, Diarmuid off the left, it had been a full twenty minutes (with the wind behind us) since our previous score. His point, and Donie’s one that followed, came too late to save the day.

  22. I think after scoring 7 point’s in a row in the second half, we expended so much energy .. because of the manner of our come back, winning Galway kickouts, turning the ball over and running the ball very well, but every time, and for 20 minutes Aiden O Shea was central to this come back.. I think we tired,or rather AOS tired, this takes an enormous amount of energy… If we contrast this with the way Galway kicked the ball into the forwards when they had the wind, it’s not nearly as hard… I think we need to balance out our very good running game with some good kicking into our forwards to have a chance of beating the Galway Shawl… Galway managed to get a few score’s by kicking into the wind and manufacturing a few frees late on in the game. One of which, was sold to, and bought by Ref Maurice Deegan. Colm Boyle had his arm’s outstretched to prevent the Galway forward advance, the Galway forward ducked his head into Colm”s hand and went down like sack of Spud’s, holding his face, in a coreographed pre-planned dive. . But back to the kicking game, we definitely need to bring some of that to our game plan, Darren Coen, put in a few judicious kicks against the wind in the first half and it almost bought allot of reward.. . Something we might need in our locker if are to meet Galway and their Shawl again in the Summer… Pearce Stadium, the Pitch is pristine as most hurling grounds tend to be… the Shawl will be as difficult to get through as the traffic congestion around Galway tends to be, when Mayo come to town… The parking will be atrocious, and the wind will be the same as it was in Castlebar last Saturday night!

  23. Leantimes, while I would agree with you that Galway sold Deegan a few dummy fouls, I think its a bit of a stretch to say that Walsh ducked his head into Boyler’s hand. It was a bad tackle, and Boyle was probably lucky enough to get away with a yellow.
    Walsh certainly milked it – there was no way it was near as hard as would have taken him 5 minutes to recover from it but that is now Galway’s style of play now, defensive and cynical. We’ve been watching them play this way for long enough to know to be prepared for it. We weren’t, and it cost us.

  24. Yes Willie Joe, someone else mentioned that it was 20 minutes between scores, and I found it hard to believe. Jason’s miss was bad, no excuse really for not scoring with that gale behind us. Fionn McDonagh btw had a very poor attempt from a free from a similar position – dropped it short! Where Galway were very effective I thought was using their physicality to get 50/50 balls in that situation, driving forward at pace forcing fouls.

    I don’t think, like others, that the best team was on the field, but still we were in a terrific position. And, we have been here before – Salthill in 2017 was almost a carbon copy. Very frustrating

  25. It is frustrating, for sure Catcol. The accepted narrative with many people (here and elsewhere) seems to be that Galway are streets ahead of us, which I don’t accept for one minute. Aside from last year’s League match, which Galway were in control of for most of the 70 minutes and always looked likely to win, every other game we’ve had with them since 2016 has been thrown away by us in circumstances where we definitely had the winning of it. That’s the real annoyance and, from a Galway perspective, I’m sure that’s the source of much well-deserved enjoyment.

  26. FBD, I don’t think that the incident I was talking about involved Shane Walsh, I think it was Danny Cummins.. and I still think it was dive and coreographed one at that.. when you have a reputation, as has Leroy as well, you are going to get punished an odd time in the wrong, to make up for the time’s you got away with something that you should have been punished for previously. Boyler may have lucky on another occasion not get a greater sanction from the Ref in an incident with Shane Walsh.. but Galway definitely played the Ref on a number of occasions… Mind you we can’t hardly blame the Ref, he reduce Galway to 13 Player’s for a period. . Our poor Game Management during that time is entirely our own fault..

  27. Leantimes, I cant agree with you that Mayo simply tired in that final 20 mins, we had more than enough possession, time and opportunities to see the game out, as WJ outlined in his post. IMO there was no leadership on the field in those last 20 mins to take control of things. For me the blame lies with the senior players on the field, there was more than enough experience on the field to manage the game. Also giving away those frees at the end was pure schoolboy stuff, in those positions you have to be cynical, take the black card if you have to but do not concede a free in front of the posts.

    Leantimes I do agree with you the Galway were acting the maggot and lay acting but honestly I would expect the same from our men in the same situation, its never pretty to watch but its something Mayo need to learn in order to win those close encounters in big games.

  28. I am throwing this out there isnt there another GAA pitch near Gaelic Park that the Mayo V New York game could be played?

  29. I’d doubt it James. Football and Hurling as we know it would be very much minority sports over there. Perhaps there’s a case for the GAA to give some 17 Million in funding over 10 years, and the White house to give a million a year to Hurling alone to prevent the spread of baseball, American Football and Basketball in the Big apple. Can’t see it happening though.

  30. Regarding Gaelic Park, as I understand it they are knocking the bar and are planning to clear the ground to make room for the extra supporters. I agree with WJ and I don’t buy into the narrative that Galway are miles ahead of us. From Hennelly’s short kick out to TP that was intercepted, Higgins getting a red card or Parson’s getting injured last year, you can point to an incident in every major game that has cost us dearly. What frustrated me most on Saturday night was the conceding of 1-1 when they had 13 men and our lack of cuteness, Galway looked like the team that had played in All Irelands the last few years and not us.

  31. Is the Mayo Panel open ended at present with Darren Coen and James Carr coming into the panel of late , with all these forwards getting a run , I dont know why Liam Irwin from Breaffy, Jack Reilly Charlestown and Peter Naughton Knockmore don’t get a shout, 3 of the best scoring forwards in the County at present.Thats what we are missing at present is players who kick the ball over the bar
    Anyone know if Conor Diskin is injured , he hasn’t featured since the game in Omagh, really hope we see him against Kerry in Tralee!!

  32. I have to respectfully disagree about Mayo having all these games within their grasp. Galway went 4 up, game over, instruction went in not to concede a goal. The O’Connor and Vaughan points were basically allowed once a goal was not conceded. Galway butchered a few chances in the second half, a 21 yard free and a 2 in 1 goal chance. They also lost their best midfielder Tom Flynn and 2 black cards. I actually thought Shane Walsh had a poor game, Antaine O’Laoi played better than him(2 points or Harrisson) Johnny Heaney was my MOTM, scored a point, set up a goal, all from wing back. I also thought John Daly was the best half back on show. His foot pass to Peter Cooke for Michael Dalys point was top class. I don’t think this is smash and grab stuff anymore, this is a quality galway squad which is being added too all the time, O’Laoi/J Daly/Cooke.

  33. As far as I know, TH, Conor Diskin is recovering from injury but I’m not 100% sure about that.

    The point I was making about last Saturday night’s game, Big Mike, related to the position we were in with 20 minutes left to play when we were only a point behind, the wind at our backs and all the momentum with us. The win was definitely in our grasp at that point but we stalled and let it slip. It was our failure to score again until the dying seconds, combined with the stupid concession of those three frees that Walsh converted, that lost it for us. Once Galway were four up as the game entered injury time, then of course it was a winning position for you.

  34. @Big Mike, you taught Shane Walsh had a poor Game… I wouldn’t like him ever to have a good game V Mayo If that’s the case…. I think without him last Saturday, I wouldn’t give Galway a prayer of beating Mayo, He was by a mile the best player on view!. And is by a country mile Galway’s best player . Very hard done by not to get an All Star…. I don’t think that the ‘Galway Shawl’ type of game suits him particularly but there you go!

  35. Yep the goal scored when it was 14 v 12 outfield is a bit of worry as to why management couldn’t organise a set up that prevented a goal .

  36. Did anyone see the heading on the western people regarding the mayo v new york game

  37. WJ I get your point but for some reason, Galway have been able to spook Mayo at that exact point in the game, they were ahead in 16 and Flynns goal just knocked them out if their stride, 18 same thing with Heaneys goal. I think they could have come up with a big play it they had gone behind Saturday. Just my own opinion.

    Lean times, I am a fan of Shane Walsh but he was dispossessed on numerous occasions kicked 3 or 4 wides and fail to rise a free from the 21. He is capable of a lot more. For Mayo I was actually impressed with Darren Coen, nice point, kept trying and plays with his head up, if he got a run he could be a good addition.

  38. Thanks for the update last fifteen minutes WJ. it does not make pretty reading, considering the steady clawing back of galways lead up to that point.
    We needed leaders to stand up at that point but instead experienced players played right into Galways hands. The only way they were going to score was from close in free kicks and we presented them with those.
    It defies logic to be honest. I would not be too hard on Coen in the sequence of events over last fifteen. He didn’t stop trying and shrewder decision making will follow with time. I thought Fionn McDonagh looked a bit tired. Between mayo and college commitments, I would rest him against Kerry and have him back fresh for Monaghan. Ruane must be feeling a bit but his performances outweigh anything I have ever seen for Breaffy. Real coming of age stuff, the one positive from Saturday.
    Let’s hope it’s just a once off but a lot of head scratching before we face the kingdom.
    Thanks again WJ for that dreadful fifteen minutes to reconstruction. Painful as it may have been

  39. Conor Diskin did play for Claremorris against Garrymore in the South Mayo O’Mara cup last Sunday week.

  40. Well done to Matthew Ruane on getting MOTM. Well deserved. He is definitely standing up to get one of the Jerseys for the summer. As predicted and just like a baby needs it’s nappy changed my arrogant Galway colleague didn’t waste any time in making his way to my office to gloat about the win and let me know about his pure delight in seeing Mayo lose to Galway again. There’s banter and there’s good old slagging but this guy takes it to a whole different level. It is hard to take. I hope to god things get better in the next round but going on the last two games Ican’t see us beating Kerry.

  41. James Fleming..Just saw it..Makes a bit of sense to get tkts organised b4 hand..Would be bedlam at the GAA grounds that morning otherwise..Read that groubd has onky 2,000 capacity which is far smaller than I imagined.

  42. Galway are ahead of us right now. How much ahead is hard to say. If they get their injured players fit and the Corofin lads back and can blend everyone together and we don’t improve significantly then I’d say they are well ahead. That said I expect come championship time we will be far more cohesive and better organised. Time will tell.
    I would be slow to criticise Boyle too much. He has qualities I love in a player – courage, commitment and ‘a battling mentality’. I thought he really got stuck into them and worked like a demon. A couple of the early decisions that went against him were questionable and I can understand his frustration. How himself and Chris Barret messed up that last ball between them when either, on their own, would have won it easily, is hard to excuse. There was no way Shane Walsh should have won that ball and then got fouled for a handy score.
    I really blame our forwards for allowing Galway a quick kick out and then let the goalie saunter out to the 45 with the ball when we had 2 extra men. This lead to their goal – a killer blow. If ever there was a time to push up and pressure their kick out it was then. Poor game management.

  43. Just had a review there of the 2013 League results – we had 2 points after round five, having beaten Kerry in the first game.
    We then lost to Dublin, Tyrone, Down, and Kildare, before beating Donegal and Cork in the final 2 games. As I recall Cillian kicked a couple of outstanding scores from the sidelines in the last game against Cork, without which we were in fairly precarious position and a loss would have seen us go down, and if a draw, only the last minute equaliser Dublin got against Donegal, we were Division 2 bound. As it happens, Donegal were relegated, and we made the Semi Final of the League. We lost the Semi final of that league to Dublin, and sure we all know how that Championship ended for us too.

  44. I don’t think there was anything wrong letting Galway have the short kickout, even during the period of black cards. They still had to work the ball the length of the field with 2 men less.

    They had the gale so if we pushed up aggressively, Lavelle would have kicked the ball 60 or 70 yards downfield. It would then have been a lottery who it broke to.

    Galway only had 4 forwards at the time so it’s head scratching how our backs got pulled out of position so badly.

  45. I thought Matthew Ruane deserved MOTM after Saturday night, Im delighted so many others agreed – he has obvioualy been well taught in Breaffy.

  46. Looking ahead to the Kerry game, we need more of a physical presence in the full back line to mark Tommy Walsh. This is the chance for David Drake or Caolan Crowe to stake a claim. I’d move Higgins to the half back line to make room for one of those.

    Keith and Michael Plunkett to offer protection to our full back line and not go sauntering upfield too much.

    Hennelly
    Harrison, Drake, Barrett
    Higgins, Plunkett, Durcan
    Aidan, Ruane
    McDonagh, Diarmuid, McLoughlin
    Doherty, Coen, Cillian (if fit)

  47. It’s certainly good to see Horan giving several new players some game time in the league – but how do we get to the level that the likes of Kerry & Galway are at by blooding new players and at the same time winning? These teams look to be much better organised right now and much more incisive in attack

  48. Well done Mathew a great game indeed. I do not believe as others do that the new players we are finding will be making big inroads in summer. It will take time and patience.. Mathew could come close as will Fionn. I believe there are better young players to come in later.. I would not be writing off EOD or Boland or Loftus, or Drake as others seem happy to do. This is team building season, remember the one everyone wanted, at least until it happened.

  49. @Big Mike
    I think yea have some quality players but don’t think yea are a quality side. Not yet anyway.
    No more than ourselves Galway got hammered out the gate by Dublin, something like 11 points they were beaten by in this year’s league.
    Besides contesting a league final and winning connacht the Galway side have shown little else.
    Beat this Dublin team or come within a point of them after 150 minutes of all Ireland final football and then I will say Galway are a quality side.
    Now the Mayo team that contested 4 all Ireland finals in 6 years. That’s what you call a quality side.
    Come up with the goods first and then you can call Galway a quality side.

  50. TBH, overall, I don’t think there is much between the teams. IMO Galway now have a greater scoring threat – that is when given the licence to play on the front foot. The one thing I am hoping KW can build on this year is consistency, having seen some erratic performances over the last few years. Dublin still a mile ahead of everyone. Kerry are gradually building, and imo are best positioned to challenge Dublin – but still don’t think they are the finished article. Tyrone gradually improving..

  51. It’s still hard to gauge IMO, I thought we’d be a lot wiser after the Galway game in knowing where we are at but would you put your house on Galway beating Mayo in the championship , I doubt anyone would tbh. Galway would be favourites and rightly so but something tells me theres a lot more in Mayo yet or perhaps that’s wishful thinking . Cillian will make a fair difference for a start .

  52. The classiest underage player I’ve seen in recent years has been Ryan O’Donoghue. I’d be hopeful he can make an impact yet in 2019 once he gets fit. Cian Hanley also a bit of an unknown quantity once he gets back in contention..

  53. The difference between this years league and the last couple of years is we’re trying out new players this year. Performances are still up and down. Theres plenty of good and bad. As someone earlier said, we were all crying out for new players to be given a chance and when it happens nobody likes it. I don’t believe we are showing any signs of designed coherent forward or defensive play yet, it’s like James is sending everyone out man to man and lets see who stands up. Can’t see us setting up the same way come championship. It’s year one again for Horan, get to a connacht final, hopefully win it but Galway will be favourites and be competitive in super 8’s but more importantly find 2-3 new starters, anything more is a bonus this year if ya ask me. People are saying we’re in decline but Id like to think we’re on the rise!

  54. Galway are a fair bit ahead of us now, and there is no denying that. We haven’t beaten them since 2015 and every year we had an excuse. Caught on the hop, sending offs, last minute goals, injuries etc etc. There’s no more excuses now.
    In truth we saw 2/3’s of a Galway team last Saturday evening, and in my opinion, they beat us fairly comfortably. At half time, wind or no wind, I felt our goose was cooked and there was no way we were going to make back a 7 point deficit against that defense, especially when we have zero goal threat.
    They dominated midfield, winning 50% of our kickouts and 60% of theirs. They dominated the breaking ball. They were miles ahead of us as regards efficiency in front of the posts (72% success rate from play versus our 29%), were far cuter than us in relation to working the clock (see when they were playing into the wind their keeper going for the furthest away ball for his restarts and them taking over 1 min for each free), and were a much more fluid attack in their movement, running off the ball and delivery of the ball into space (they scored 1-7 from play versus our 0-5).
    Maybe I am wrong but I just don’t get where some people say we left this game behind us! At no point in that game were we ever in control of matters. The only time we got a run on them, of sorts, was between the 15th mins and 30th mins of the second half when we got 3 points without reply. But even then, when you dig a little deeper in to that period, we were not in any sort of control as we were scrambling all over the pitch with no shape or idea to our attack.
    For proof see these stats to show just how aimless we were and lacking any sort of control to our attack….
    From minute 15 to 41 of the second half, bear in mind with a very strong wind at our backs, we had 13 attacks. We scored 4 points from play and 2 pointed frees. However, we had 5 wides from play and missed 2 frees – one dropping short where the keeper caught it unchallenged! and the other hit the post. From the 29th min to the 38th Galway worked three frees in scorable areas (two coughed up by Boyle!) and pointed them all taking 3 mins off the clock on each occasion.
    More efficient and cuter. They deserved their win and when they get the rest of their players back on a dryer quicker pitch, we will have a huge job to beat them in the Summer.

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