Game day – a win’s a must today

It’s game day again, with a return to Croke Park for James and the lads. It’s a return to win-or-bust territory for them too.

So much has happened since the last time the team played at the venue in the League final at the end of March. Defeat to Roscommon a few weeks after that threw our planned Championship trajectory out of kilter with the fact that today’s match is our fifth in as many weeks being a direct consequence of that wholly avoidable loss.

But there’s no point looking back. No point either thinking ahead to what might happen in the Kerry/Donegal match later this afternoon, a contest with which our Phase 2 clash with Meath shares the billing at Croke Park today.

We need to mind our own business today. Meath are dangerous opponents, with Andy McEntee’s team already firmly in bonus territory for the year and looking to cap the fine progress they’ve made in 2019 with a significant scalp. In that regard, we’d fit the bill for them perfectly.

So James and his team need to come to HQ prepared. They’ll know more than the rest of us why the meltdown in Killarney happened in the manner that it did and they’ll be aware too what they need to do today to get themselves into a winning position and, most importantly, to see the win out.

That’ll be far from simple. But, as we’ve seen so often in the past, this team is at its best when everything is on the line, when doubts are being voiced about their ability to raise their game. They’ve done it before, we all hope they’ll do it again today.

There’s no better place than Croke Park for any team to raise its game. It’s a venue where we’ve consistently performed well since 2011 and you’d have to think the team will respond in the right way to appearing on the hallowed turf once again, for the first time in the Championship since the 2017 All-Ireland final.

I was Croke Park on that emotion-laden day but, sadly, I won’t be today, though I will be following the action as it unfolds. You’re in safe hands today, however – friend of the blog Tom McLoughlin will be penning the match report later on and the MOTM poll will be up there as usual this evening too.

We’ll have a far better idea later this evening about how our hopes rest in this year’s Championship. What we know now, though, is that to have any hopes of further progression at all we need to beat Meath today.

Here’s hoping that this is exactly what we do. The best of luck to James and the team today. Up Mayo.

192 thoughts on “Game day – a win’s a must today

  1. I expect Meath to win , our bucks are dead on their feet plus our injury list is ridiculous at this stage . Be a poor mayo crowd again today , bandwagon is already starting to dwindle .

  2. As J Streicher might say when it absolutely positively has to be….. we have to win today and we will please God and the last time we beat Armagh and Meath in the same season was 1951 they tell me something big happened in Mayo they year was it the shooting of the Quiet Man? See you all in Headquarters enjoy the Hols Willie Joe

  3. God Sean Burke I thought I was negative but my goodness you take the biscuit have a bit of faith Man this team is not finished yet.

  4. The last time Shane lowery led going into the final day of the open was 1951?
    Mayo Abu.

  5. Its knockout basically and in Croke Park in the height of summer.Experience wins today.Hon Mayo.

  6. Go to church Sean Burke…bitta faith man!
    Hope to see a big Mayo crowd and hear the roar to lift our team. Maigheo…
    Enjoy your break WJ… you’ll be fresh for the next game!!

  7. Safe travels to all supporters,best of luck to Mayo i am not very confident on this one I believe that there of that back seven must have found that four leaf clover to start today,just same up Mayo

  8. Looking forward to Croker today.. 2 games see .I expect the usual big Mayo following today.
    Think we will have enough to win by 3 or 4 . This is a must win game and believe we are well capable of it . Bench will key for us today

  9. If we adopted that attitude Sean and gave up on this team they’d likely have been dead and buried a few years ago.
    Positivity needed on morning of match, otherwise best to say nothing.
    Up Mayo

  10. There’s a job to be done today and we will do it. We know who Meath’s danger men are. Keep them shackled, no concession of early goals, score-board kept ticking over and the experienced lads brought in at the end to close it out and Mayo will win. Kerry do us a favour today and we are right back in it. Keep the faith! Up Mayo!

  11. Safe travels to all Mayo supporters today, hopefully Mayo will win, which I think they will.
    Revillino – I loved your post – Mayo can play any division team and make a thriller out of it.
    Thats what makes this team great and seperates them from the rest.

    Anyway see you all later in CP, enjoy the day.

  12. Don’t give up on these lads. They have given us great days out and will again today please god. It was a great feeling winning the league in croker and giving it to all the dubs fans in work who persistently slagged Mayo. I for one will be roaring our boys on today, we need to be the 16th man. We owe Meath for robbing us of an all ireland. Be proud of your Mayo roots and support your county. I would personally carry each of these lad’s off the battlefield as they try and win sam for us mayo people. NO SURRENDER!!!!!

  13. Hi Pullhard,
    It’s a very dry morning and the forecast is the same as yesterday…..the only shower expected in Croker today is Meath!!
    Kind Regards
    Martin the Dub

  14. Ill roar them on like all supporters during the game but my head says the game is up as I think we are just exhausted as a whole .

  15. Nice one Martin….a dry day in Drumcondra will do nicely to put them back on their arses. ’96 still lives long in the memory. Hopefully John McDermott , Colm Coyle et al are there to witness it today too.
    The red and green machine to roar to life again today. Enjoy and safe travelling all the ever loyal fans!!!

  16. Best of luck mayo win or lose always be proud of ye,to many so called supporters jumping on the bandwagon of criticism that the team not deserve?seem to forget the last few years of so many great days and we not done yet?mayo abu

  17. Mayo should be well capable of beating Meath today. Was at the two games yesterday. Roscommon fans were in good numbers supporting their team but had little to no expectation. One of them said that no matter how Mayo get to the latter stages of the series, be it scraping or sailing, they still walk out on to Croke Park with confidence and expect to win. Some people I know think this is a stupid approach but after sitting through Roscommons seventy odd minutes of trepidation I am glad to be green and red. Maigh Eo Abu…….

  18. Just out of bed, nice morning in Dublin, a bit cloudy and not warm, ideal for the 2 pm kick off, the heat won’t be a factor.
    I’m hoping for a game on par with the Galway performance.

  19. I don’t think a Galway level performance will be enough. Remember we only won that by 3 in the end after they missed a penalty.
    We need to make dominance show on scoreboard like Dublin did yesterday and Kerry did a week ago.
    Question is are we able to do that

  20. Last chance to throw ourselves some sort of a life line for the Super 8’s. Lets not depend on other results. We need to see the Mayo of old go out there today and obliterate Meath with a double digit victory. Thoughts of doing enough to win will not be enough today. Do not stop for 70+ mins and make every score count – this team has it in their ability to put our scoring difference back in the frame going into the last round of games. Up Mayo.

  21. Big mouth Brady got it wrong again no Diarmuid on the panel no point rushing him back. Good to see Oisín Mullin and Mikey Murray and a few younger lads on the panel

  22. Fuck me Sean that’s a bit weak.

    Yes we might be a bit tired. And yes we’re carrying injuries. But we’re still in there and sport is in many ways about overcoming adversity. Getting the most out of yourself and the collective. We can still do that and there’s every chance that will move us forward.

    I don’t think it’s fair or accurate to refer to our support as a bandwagon.

  23. Another great day that will bring the heroes out on pitch for another exciting game.
    Keep the faith and hearts up for these guys.
    They deserve that much from us.
    They never give up, neither must we.

  24. Let’s not criticise Brady too much.
    He is one of our own and has done more for Mayo football than most.
    He is in the media now and I guess he reports what he hears. Horan himself said he thought DOC would possibly feature.
    I don’t think what Brady says is making the difference for us one way or the other

  25. When I looked around me in Killarney Sean there was a fine Mayo following.. probably as good as has ever followed the green and red that far south. You don’t go to every game in the belief you’ll win them all.. I knew there was very little chance of us beating Kerry but I do give us a good chance of beating Meath today and I will travel in hope. You may have lost faith in us winning or winning what you perceive to be acceptable to you what we should be winning but you have no right to be commenting about the number of Mayo supporters who travel, don’t travel, travel in faith or blind faith or for whatever reason. There’s nothing wrong with calling a loss or a win but don’t be calling on perceived lack of attendance to support your own faltering faith in our team or to justify the game is up because that’s pure bullshit

  26. @sean burke,good man yourself,brilliant attitude as usual.

    For what its worth i think we could easily lose today.But that constant negative shite out of some supporters would make ya puke.
    I dont know where youre getting the idea there was a poor Mayo crowd in killarney either?

  27. Anyone know what time gates open ?
    Was going to head on early and get the carvery
    But if it’s nit open till one will have to eat around I Connell street

  28. Very much looking forward to the games today. We enjoy playing in croker. Meath of course will be well up for this. So nothing less than our A game will suffice.

    For me our big Achilles heel is turnovers. Far too often we give away possession and momentum to the opposition. Turnovers are killers. We need to be more patient minimise our turnovers.

    Keith Higgins given more freedom would give us another platform to create opportunity. Looking forward to seeing if he does start on half back line.
    Finally, Darren coen and cillian o Connor are game winners. Great to now have 2 instinctive scorers in ff line. Patience in possession and composure will win today . Which ever time muster the most of each of those will leave croker the happier

  29. We can only play what’s in front of us today, and to your point the rest of today’s action is none of our business for now. I’m going for a Mayo win with a dramatic finish to the Super 8’s in McHale Park in two weeks that will see Mayo and Donegal Progress. Mayo had a Rollercoaster of a year in the league last year and we’ll avoid any talk of what happen in the 2018 Championship. This year we got a national title, we’ve seen a nice few new (Top Class) players get their start and even though we did it the hard way we made it to the Super 8’s. Progress in any fashion has to be recognized. I’ll put my hand up and say I wasn’t a huge fan of James coming back. I don’t believe you go backwards to go forwards, as they say. But looking at what he has done so far this year, the future of Mayo football is bright and gives us all hope. Progress is always a bumpy road. Will this be the year the hashtag #mayoforsam causes a twitter melt down by them reaching the holy grail? It could happen this year as easily as any other. Keep the faith – Hup Mayo!! And safe travels to all the fans…!

  30. Good luck to Mayo today its hard to call but a win against an improving but with some way to go Meath is well achievable. Note the way Tyrone didnt panic against Cork yesterday and closed out a Cork team that have restored pride in their county and will be motivated next year and should beat the awful Roscommon in the next match.

    Connaught football is looking pretty poor as of right now probably needs Mayo to produce something good now.

  31. Anyone know anything about oisin Mullins, I’m not living in the county so not familiar with him at all.

  32. Good luck to all of us – team, management and supporters! We’re back in Croke Park and our team have had good days there. The younger lads had a good day there on League Final Day when we won there!

    Meath will fancy their chances and why wouldn’t they with their running and energy?

    But we have a team of warriors that will have our support now and into the future. I’m happy to be supporting them today back in Croker. James is at the helm – I have confidence in his abilities to lead. We don’t know the result but we know our job – to support the team and they have our support! Mayo abú!

  33. Time to stop the negativity and digging up of past history and the goalkeeping debate.
    Today is the day to support our proud Mayo warriors and the new boys on the panel.
    We will win today. I did say we would not beat Kerry.
    Our boys have made all our supporters all over the world very proud to be from Mayo and to day will be no different.
    The red and green heart is alive and well.

  34. Deirdre Dee if seen posts on previous thread I believe he was one the lads along with Aidan Orme I said have great potential going forward. U20. No nonsense defensively with good drive and game reading ability

  35. Hi All,
    A really strong wind after picking up here and that wasn’t forecast….Will defo make a difference if it keeps up. I ‘ll sign off now and once again best of luck as always to Mayo and best of luck to Gamechanger10 at 4 for his beloved yeeeras!!

    Kind Regards
    Martin the Dub

  36. Bandwagon is simple to explain , Down qf game in 2012 had less support than league games since 2013 -14 because of the success of this team . I don’t understand your denial , it’s factual that mayo support has increased greatly in this era . I’d hazzard a guess it happens most teams who have a run of good years . And I stick by my original point that the support will drop off.

    As for the game itself I can pretend to be all confident and thump the chest with all sorts of bravado of revenge blah blah but I think unless our players have been reenergised since last week we are in trouble .

  37. I agree with you Pat, David Brady was a
    Great Mayo footballer, he gave his all for the
    team. He is in a different role now and probably
    taken out of context most of the time.
    We have a habit of turning on our own
    Need to concentrate on the game today and
    move on. Up Mayo.

  38. David Brady gave everything while playing for Mayo, and a nice fella when you would meet him, always friendly, I actually saw him taking part in the sleepover for charity one night outside the GPO on the lead up to Xmas a few years ago.
    Time for Mayo to announce that they are back in Croker today, no more excuses.

  39. By no means an easy game today as one or two contributors have posted in the last few days but I’m expecting a win nonetheless. It’ll be touch and go all the way though judging by our most recent games.
    It’ll be great to get back to Croke Park too and hopefully show some of our former ruthlessness in putting teams away. Fingers crossed! Maigh Eo Abú!

  40. Meath half back must be shut down and given the performance of our half forward line last weekend we will need a huge improvement if we are to control that area. All of Meaths goals stem from there and in Keoghan they have an outstanding player.
    I expect us to win on the basis that a) we have to and we perform better when it’s last chance saloon, and b) our second half performance in Killarney went generally unnoticed but there was some good stuff in there.
    Mayo by 3
    Hon Mayo

  41. Loftus McLaughlin Boland Carr Moran are subs for forwards. If all 5 started no one would argue I think. Backs are Barret McCormack Plunkett Mullen. Again if all 4 started would we argue.
    Midfield is Mikey Murray so bit light for cover there but enough options to shuffle the deck.
    Still the 3 lads to come back so just get over today and you never know.
    Up Mayo.

  42. Just imagine if a few of the Mayo team ran on today with the Sean Burke attitude. We’d be beaten before the throw in. Sean with a mindset like that you can call yourself a follower but you ain’t no supporter. I first saw a Mayo team in the flesh in ’63, and in every game I’ve ever been to since I haven’t once walked in the gate expecting to lose. It’s an absolutely shite attitude to have and to be honest this team and it’s real supporters don’t even understand it. Have to say this white feather shit is becoming more prevalent though on the various Mayo sites. Ye should be fucking ashamed of yourselves.

  43. I get what you’re saying Fearbolg, but I’m guessing that a lot of people are just getting a bit disillusioned at this stage. I know I am, not with our team of fine warriors who have given me so much joy over the years, but with the GAA in particular. I remember a few years ago wondering why everyone in work seemed to hate Mayo so much and then one morning over coffee I made the mistake of saying that I believed Mayo could win… then it was explained to me that this was why other fans hated us so much, because we had the arrogance to believe we could win when we had nothing to base it on. But what is the point of sport if you don’t believe that you have a chance. I still believe that on a given day this Mayo team could beat anyone… but that belief is being slowly eroded every time I watch Dublin play. Why is it that their players can jump higher and run faster than anybody else? They are getting stronger and stronger. They don’t seem to get any joy from winning any more. But this cycle will end, because regardless of how much money is being pumped in, there will come a time when the kids won’t be bothered to play because it will be too boring for them… there’s too many alternatives that can be seen as a fun challenge.. that isn’t the case for must of the rest of the country so other teams will eventually become stronger, and the GAA will say that we were whining for nothing and so the cycle will begin again. It’s a bit soul destroying to be honest, but I’ll still don the green and red and support our guys every time they take to the field, whether in person or in front of the TV or listening to Midwest… because that’s what sport is all about

  44. Mayo Nation. On the occasion of our first championship game at Croke Park since AIF 2017.

    We are drawn today to this place, this cathedral of football, where our collective soul resides.

    We come not in sorrow ,or mournfulness of past encounters with all the minor tragedies and farce and curses involved.

    No , we come once again in hope and joy and love. In our throngs. As always , being from Mayo, our curse is our hope. Our curse is that we ever loved at all. Our “curse “ is that we openly express our joy and innocence.

    Yet this love , this hope travel , this passion , that even in its most contemplative moments can never be truly quiet, is the stuff of a life well lived.

    A life of energy , and devotion to the cause so that the next generation do better than we did , and through their example , in turn ,make us all better and more decent people.

    We are surrounded by so called “drama “, the stuff of a life of striving. The “drama “ is just the mist of passion.

    The scolds of the perfect are not for us. We worship the imperfect. We worship the striving , we worship the courage and the relentless quest for betterment.

    We are Mayo.
    We worship the journey , not the destination.

  45. Ya, good points, amc. For me, on game day in particular, it crystalizes into one very simple concept: we go to support them in a positive frame of mind. We can analyse the shite out of this game tomorrow, but surely our job today is to support and believe.

  46. Oisin Mullin still U2o next year but don’t think he will be playing in that competition. Standout player with serous pace and from what I saw recently against Galway wasn’t prepared to throw the towel, great to have that attitude in a young player long May it continue. That pace gives him that advantage over our other subs. Pity Akram headed to Chicago with Hanley but they had their reasons. Reape hasn’t been on the bench since New York, felted he had more to offer very attacked minded bench today felt Reape was one who could get scores if needed

  47. Well said Fearbolg,I am as long on the go as you are i have many happy memories of following Mayo,some disappointing days as well,but we support Mayo because of who we are,not just when we win

  48. From the 2 U20 games I saw this year, Oisin Mullins was the standout back. Good experience for him to be in around the team, but don’t think he’ll feature.

  49. Lads some of you should go easy on Sean Burke Comes across as genuine passionate Mayo supporter who attends huge amount of Mayo games I am sure he was in the Hyde in 2011 when this great run started and there was a small Mayo following It has grown massively in intervening years and yes it’s true if team performance levels drop support will drop also Hope the drop doesn’t start today These great warriors have given us everything and I am sure they will do so again today Up Mayo

  50. Perfectly written post Swahili.
    We are all part of the journey not the destination.
    As long as we have the health to be here, then I thank God.
    If Tom Parsons plays even 5 mins, I just want to be present, as it’ll be a moment of pure resilience. Mayo forever.

  51. Please God Horan will have a plan for Newman. Can see them bombarding our FB line in the opening stages!. Lay off Sean Burke a bit, in fairness he’s calling it how he see’s it. I dont agree with his bandwagon comment though. I do agree with him in that I think we’re tired, we’re all entitled to an opinion. Im sitting in the lower davin now ready to roar the boys on, I was 10 years old in ‘96 and that was the first time I felt the heart break. Go on now boys and give ur all!

  52. Good luck today one and all, weather is changing but hopefully it won’t affect the game. As we say up here you can never see Meath get beat to much..

  53. Sean’s passionate Mayo heart is on his sleeve for all to see. Anyone who knows anything of him knows he is one of our best supporters.

  54. Brannigan riding is but left 5 easy points behind us there and after giving them hope

  55. What a terrible terrible half
    Pure dead
    Clarke Boyle Seamie about the only positives
    And mcdonagh’s points
    Coen looks slow again

    The two teams are at a similar level based on that
    I’m not sure if it’s the injuries or not but we seem to have completely abandoned our running game and are obsessed with kick passing now

  56. Boland slowing everything down, get higgins on for him fast! We’re so lethargic looking. Shoukd a punished them in last 10mins there, instead we’re level. Get redbull into them or something!

  57. Halftime, Cillian can’t win a ball, Stephen Coen is marking the wrong meath forward, the guy with the ponytail is way to fast off the mark for Stephen. Aidan, Boyle, Darren Coen, Boland all playing well.
    Still Mayo should be 3 ahead, game in the balance now as last 15 minutes will be interesting.

  58. Three awful Mises when leading by two.Should be five ahead but keeping meath in this game.Boland and Mcdonagh the pick but need to kick on.Meath are limited enough.

  59. I am happy enough. Wind is a factor. Mayo are probably playing a patient game. Hopefully they can up the pace at the right time?
    Anyway it is a privelege to be here.

  60. Very poor shot selection by Mayo and they had sorted out the wides in last few games but if they lose this they will know the wides have cost them dear. Meath very poor to be honest neither team will be at business end of championship.

  61. To be fair , ref is giving Meath some very soft frees.
    I still believe u can win and think we (dublin) will play u in the semi final. U always save ur best for us 🙂

  62. What’s up with Lee Keagan, very anonymous today. Need someone to get a grip in this game fast

  63. Not sure it would have been Boland the one I would have taken off for Carr. At least he was showing good energy levels

  64. The man who can’t be criticised has found an opposing player with nearly every kickout

  65. Sounded like it was nervy enough for long stretches but that volley of scores late on could prove very important. More or less undos the points difference damage from Killarney. We’re not dead yet.

  66. Mayo are back big time. Boyle my man of the match by a mile.
    One hoodo made right, first team I witnessed Mayo beat beat in the championship.

  67. Well that was interesting. Mayo showed glimpses of what they are but Meath threw that away.

  68. You criticize him plenty Corick bridge, no mention of the numerous balls he took out of the air or the one on one save though.

  69. Well done Mayo,feel Jason had a massive influence on it,won loads of dirty ball but to all who played well,well done,a little life in the corpse yet

  70. Handy enough at the death but plenty to work on. Including kick outs! Our bench made the difference but Boyle was excellent.

  71. Ok, so what’s best result for us in Kerry v Donegal now that we have a – 1 points difference

  72. Eating my words with glee here, and washing them down with Heineken :). Today was all about winning! The 9 points puts a nice sweetner on it. Meath were owed that. Hon Kerry now ta fuck!!!!!!!

  73. Two week break now vital for Horan to rest them and reorganise. That was a poor match lads no point in dressing it up the standard was poor. Moran out for Kerry expect Donegal to hound Kerry but with Clifford, O Brien and O Shea they have a good chance.

  74. Hope Kerry win today, leaving a winner take all the with Donegal, not sure how the permutations will work if 3 teams in up with 4 points. Rather have it in our hands with a win and we’re through scenario. Felt some players got on the scoreboard today but there overall play was disappointing Seamus o Shea looked great for his first start of the season felt he has more energy than Cillian and again Kevin Mcloughlin even though they got the goals. Two week break should help think Keagan is not 100% rest will help him. Andy Moran had a great second half and can’t say enough about Colm Boyle

  75. Great win, flat enough for 50 mins but the experience of Andy, Colm , Lee, Aidan, Seamus & Harrison who all played very well. Cillian good on frees, solid performance but a lot to tighten up on.

  76. Both Donegal and kerry hit with injuries David Moran big loss for Kerry, Ban Gallagher and McGhee huge losses for Donegal against Kerry forwards

  77. Don’t think the scoring difference job was great Wilie Joe to be honest. If Donegal win by one point, we’d have to beat them by 6 in Castlebar to overtake them (assuming Kerry beat an already eliminated Meath). That goes up in magnitude if Donegal win by more. Should have scored a lot more and we might rue butchering so many chances.

    We need a Kerry win or a draw here.

  78. Whatever about butchering chances the final score flatters us. I don’t think points difference will be a factor because any kind of win for Donegal is a mountain. If they draw a one point win is enough.
    We’re way off the level but hopefully rest and a few injuries clearing gives us a 50 50 chance. I think the 5 weeks is a factor but still quite a few missed passes were without much pressure.
    All the same happy to be still in.

  79. We need a Kerry win or a draw…If Donegal win by the minimum we will have to beat them by six..every extra two points after that in a winning margin will add one more to what we have to beat them by. So really unless the result is a kerry win or a draw it is highly unlikely we will see beyond the Supe 8s.

  80. Better team won out.

    Andy was top class when introduced. Not sure what we’ve done to deserve Colm Boyle. 10/10 from him today but I’m looking forward to seeing the replay for his yellow card. Looked like it could have easily been a straight red. Great foul in hindsight.

    Nice to beat Meath. Long, long time coming.

    Go on Kerry.

  81. We made very heavy weather out of that. Meath very poor and mayo too, until the last quarter. Ref was muck, blowing arbitrarily for every contact and gave meath some very soft frees. Mayo have an awful lot to work on, but we always get better in august. Andy made a big difference. Boyler immense. Too many players didnt show up. A draw with kerry and donegal would be lovely, thanks

  82. Ken, I know what you mean about boyle challenge, it looked bad, but tv replay showed it to be nothing more than a yellow.

  83. Good enough out, good to see the positive impact of the bench. I doubt there’s much practical difference to a Kerry win or draw for us is there? That’s assuming Kerry account for Meath which is the safest bet of all the final phase matches.

  84. Jesus that 9 point win has given us just a glimmer of hope scoring diff wise
    I hope the points we left behind in Killarney at end of game don’t come back to haunt us ………
    But that’s for another day
    Let’s hope Kerry do is a favor

    Boyler epitomizes this team. What a performance. And the ultimate taking one for the team foul at the end . Seamie immense . Andy changed the game .
    Clarke keeping a clean sheet was crucial …….
    Many negatives too but as of now we are still alive .

  85. I thought boland was quite poor today. He is just so one-paced, I know he scored a couple of points but other than that made some poor decisions on the ball. You need pace in Croke Park, it’s as simple as that. He plays at such a pedestrian pace and would be murdered up against the likes of McCaffrey if we ever played Dublin. I’d have Carr or Treacy every day of the week ahead of boland for that reason only. Vaughan is very sluggish too. We desperately need Paddy Durcan and Keith Higgins back as a minimum. Diarmuid or Matty would really add extra athleticism too.

  86. Donegal keeper has excellent kickouts
    Can’t do the basics

    I’d rather a keeper who is good at his main job

    It sure would mayo 88
    I’ll hit Millenium instead sure :@

  87. The draw keeps Mayo on life support but there appears to be a gulf between Kerry and Donegal and the other two teams. It would be an upset for Mayo to beat Donegal but there is always the chance when its in your own hands.

  88. Great game of football,
    Kerry v Donegal
    Neither team deserved to loose.
    Correct me if I’m wrong,
    If we beat Donegal we go through?

  89. Reverse of last game in the league in Balleybofey where we were away needing just a draw… this time they’re coming to us needing just a draw! Hope some of our injuries are sorted out be then !

  90. Great stuff. Win in Castlebar and we’re through. Simple as that, no more pricking around with calculators and scoring difference!

  91. Never thought I’d shout Kerry on in a game. But that result will do us. Straight shootout now between ourselves and donegal. And hopefully some of our injury concerns will be back for the donegal game. Improvements are needed but we keep the faith

  92. David Clarke’s kick outs are an absolute farce at this stage. Donegal will murder them.

  93. Well it’s in our own hands anyway. We looked very tired today. Boyle was man of the match but off the ball he looked wrecked. Same as Seamus and Aiden. We didn’t have the energy to press up fully or run through them. We didn’t run much for our own kick outs either. We won cos we were the better team. Meath were talked up before the match but I thought they were the worst team we played this year. We desperately need the two weeks off and we need some of the injured soldiers back. The other side is we are going into the last round of the super 8’s with a chance of getting to an all Ireland semi with an injury list that very few teams could withstand. Whatever happens in two weeks time I think it’s been a good year for a team in transition,.

  94. Why wasn’t there an anthem before the game. I see the artane band played at half time. Clarke’s kickouts were poor. Won’t do the next day. Game was poor affair but we always looked like winners. Bring back Higgins and start Carr the next and look forward to beating the dubs in the semi. Up mayo

  95. It was a poor performance. Very flat, tired looking. The scoreline flattered us in the end. No way were we 9 points better.
    Aidan appears to be carrying an injury.
    Clarke shocking on the kickouts again, something seriously needs to be done here. Donegal will destroy our kickout. A plan needs to be implemented for this.

  96. Can not see us getting by Donegal . Donegal by 4 or 5 but it’s not the end of the world

  97. I am very happy with that result. From the first fifteen minutes I felt we had it in us but our scoring let us down. Our poor conversion in the first half meant we couldn’t get ahead. That needs to improve. (However, Meath’s scoring was wayward and had they been more intense it could have been much harder for us).

    Our defending and work rate was positive.

    Aidan and Seamie covered a lot of ground both back and forward.

    Andy is class – esp his ability to set someone else up for a score.

    Well done Kevin Mc – it’s great to see him score.

    For a team playing a fifth week in a row we were understandably flat but I saw enough positive attitude to be happy.

    Very very well done to everybody!

  98. Dreamy, Sean Burke, Km 79, etc., just get behind the friggin team, will ye? We won by 9 points. If Donegal beat us ye can all be Pat fuckin Spillane but in the meantime would ye mind lookin up the meaning of ‘positivity’?.

  99. McBrearty came off with hamstring injury for Donegal near the end,
    A big loss if not available for Castlebar.
    Injuries could be clearing up for us

  100. A lot to work on there for sure.The main thing today was a win,we definitely werent 9 points better than Meath but we’ll take it!
    Meath were very over rated,id have them on a similar level to Down.Also they didnt have the conditioning of a team thats been at the top table for years like Mayo.I was very worried before throw with the news on keith.We dealt with a difficult situation well.
    These lads will rarely let you down even though they didnt play particularly well today.
    A sell out in a winner takes all in cbar in 2 weeks….i guess the bandwagon keeps rolling :;

  101. Last I checked, Fearblog, people can have whatever opinion they like. I will go and support the team as usual, but there’s no rule against a bit of realism. We need to up our game if we want to beat Donegal. That’s just a fact. What happened today will not be good enough against Donegal. I don’t see any problem with stating that.

  102. Fearbolg you may want to reread my post ?
    And that was even before the Donegal draw
    I was behind the team up in Croker as always

    So now
    Bank holiday Saturday night in Cbar
    2 weeks rest
    Against a team we have needed a result against before
    And gotten it…….

  103. Absolutely delighted with that win, congrats to players and management, in championship a team needs pacey players, especially in Croke Park, look who we were missing today, Ruane, o connor, durkan, Higgins, all lads with serious pace, would be great to have 3 of them back for 2 weeks time. Great season so far, won the league, beat Galway, made super 8s, developed new players, and a mighty battle to come in 2 weeks, and lads have a break next wend. Well done Mayo, so proud of them. And Lowery, a Mayo fan, I’m sure,!! won the open!!! Mayo Abu.

  104. Just doing a bit of dreaming here… to win an AI this year we need to beat Donegal, Dublin and Kerry/Tyrone… now wouldn’t that be some achievement!! And before everyone pounces on me, I can’t see us getting past Donegal realistically, but still stranger things have happened with this team!!

  105. Boyler – you smasher! He is unreal. (Why oh why wasnt he on pitch v rossies). Lovely acknowledment by him at end to the Mayo fans giving him a standing ovation. Andy turned the game. However so much misses, paases going astray, kickouts,etc It some rollercoaster to be a Mayo fan!! On we go!!

  106. I’m on Clarke case and I know its not all his fault but Hennelly needs reinstating for our restarts alone.

    Looking at Donegal and Kerry game I saw many similar patterns of play to ourselves. Rochford influence can be seen in Donegal. If we cannot rediscovery the intensity of our best years than I haven’t a clue how to go about breaking them down

  107. Last time I checked Clarke didn’t concede a goal today which was the winning and losing of the game when it was in the melting pot
    And make no mistake it was
    Rock solid under dangerous high balls in
    Point blank save

    Switch over to Donegal game
    They are now in danger of being knocked out Cos their keeper who has an excellent kickout doesn’t save a shot he should

  108. I have no problem with people expressing opinions, with the possible exception of the post that started all this off today from Sean Burke: ‘I expect Meath to win’. Keep that sort of shite up guys and the law of averages will eventually makel ye l byook good.

  109. Colm Boyle was really something today.
    Happy with 9 pt win and a good rest ahead.
    These guys will always do everything to win when it matters.
    If other teams had 5 games in 5 wèeks and a few injuries to add to that, maybe they wouldn’t be at a fast pace either.
    A well deserved rest guys and we’ll be in a different zone in 2weeks.
    The journey continues…..

  110. Major improvement required to have any chance of beating Donegal. Their form is far healthier than ours. We know it’s in our lads but can they produce it??

    Donegal might think they owe us but 2012 should be enough motivation for any Mayoman.

  111. Em ….. I hate to be negative on a day when we`ve won a championship match . But this was woeful.

    Misplaced hand passes, fumbles all over the place, timid shots that only landed into the grateful arms

    of the opposing goalkeeper.

    I could go on but I would be banned from this site forever.

  112. Clarke dominated his square which is job number 1 for any keeper.

    i thought Vaughan has a shocker again today 2-3 yards behind his man. He’s been a great servant to Mayo but he’s totally off the pace at the moment.

    Boyler dug out a crucial score again when needed has to be one of the best half backs of the last 20 years

  113. if you haven’t got your tickets for Donegal game already, I’d get on for them now, if they’re not sold out already

  114. just to chime in i have no issue with Mayo fans criticising the team,there is a lot to criticise. When you open up the comments in the morning of a big Croke Park game and the first thing is some lad saying we’re definitely going to lose and our support was poor in killarney then i start to bristle.Everyone can have different opinions but be prepared to be challenged on them (especially if down right untruths like the above)
    I dont think we’ll beat Donegal as it is but we certainly wont with the ” Sean Burke attitude ” as somebody called it earlier!

  115. Right so…time to relax everyone. Switch off for a while. We have an all Ireland quarter final knock out game V. Donegal in 2 Weeks. What more can we ask for. These lads never give in!

  116. The last time I checked Meath had led Donegal up to the 63rd minute.

    Donegal eventually beat them by 9.

    We beat Meath by 9 and somehow people say we are far inferior to Donegal.

    It doesn’t add up.

    Fair play to Mayo today. Everyone of them busted there arse’s.

    Well done to the team and Manager.

  117. As usual this wonderful asset of WJ’s blog is a whirlwind of different perspectives.

    Clarke, whilst not perfect saved a certain goal and caught several high balls in / punched them clear. He’s a double All-Star.

    We’ve manouvered ourselves into potentially an All-Ireland semi final despite being hammered with massive injury losses by proven match winners.

    Down away, Armagh home, Galway neutral, Kerry away and today Meath in Croker – hectic schedule and bar Kerry we got by.

    I don’t think we are at our best but they never ever give up.

    Look at how we scrambled in 16 & 17.

    The game next week is all cards on the table, Donegal will be favourites, it’ll be a savage game in front of 30k or so.

    The noise, the colour.

    WE ARE MAYO.

    CANT FRICKIN WAIT.

  118. Also wouldn’t be too hard on those that are more pessimistic than others. It may just be a coping mechanism so you start dealing with the worst outcome earlier

  119. Well done Mayo fair play to them they dug it out and it’s always good to win in Croke Park and very sweet to beat Meath. Imagine if we beat Donegal and Tyrone beat the Dubs In Omagh which isn’t inconceivable we could have a Mayo V Tyrone semi final but that’s for another day. Big improvement required to beat Donegal but wouldn’t put it past us to do it

  120. Everyone has an opinion folks. The best thing about this blog is that you can state them without being savaged like others places on the internet.
    We definetly didn’t have a poor following in Killarney. In fact i thought it was very strong.

    I think the two week break is massive. I thought it was next week….
    We have crossed all the bridges we needed to after losing to Roscommon and are still one of 5 teams thgat can make the Semi final stage.
    We will be at home hopefully get AOS and Durcan right and who knows.
    Obviously the Rochford involvement in Donegal will be huge here. I give them the advantage for sure.
    By the way I don’t think we will see retirements on mass going into 2020. Boyle, Moran, Higgins, SOD are still all excellent.
    Hopefully we get Tom Parsons right too.
    Anyway 2 weeks break has come at the right time……God knows we all earned it!!

  121. If it we bet Dublin by 9 points today people on this blog would still find faults.
    Even at half time today v Meath I was happy that Mayo would come through, Mayo were in control around the middle of the pitch and were unlucky not to be ahead by a few points, this pattern nearly always carries through into the 2nd half of a match.
    The Donegal v Kerry restored by faith in Gaelic football, I always have had a soft spot for Donegal, really nice people, always a great place to go for a few days, wedding last into the next day up there.
    Michael Murphy was the best player on view today, Clifford was a let down.
    Mayo are back got 2-17 today on a day when at least 1 forward, 1 midfielder and 2 defenders were anonymous for about 55 minutes of the game.
    Donegal plan fairly simple, Murphy is the conductor, isolate McBrearty with his marker, they have a few guys that drive forward with power and pace and can shoot from distance.
    Most people will agree that our group was always going to be decided in the final game in Castlebar.
    Cork and Meath need to learn that a game is played for almost 80 minutes not 50 or 55.
    There’s always a bit left in my glass, half full not empty.
    .

  122. I need to look back on the game but from memory right now 2 out of 3 high balls from Clarke were uncontested. So no brownie points there. Lets face facts we have major play restart problem Im singling clarke (he isn’t the whole problem) and I firmly believe we get a better platform with Hennelly kickouts.
    Clarke saves weren’t spectular nor was it needed but Hennelly is as good (outstanding in fact).

  123. A poor game, split open up the middle by a very average Meath team and wrong options taken on several occasions. But on the bright side we put in a good last quarter and are one step away from a semi final place. Our greatest asset today was experience. If we can get Durcan Ruane and DOC back, they will certainly bolster us. Were still in the race and for a team in transition, we are overachievers
    Two weeks break, a chance to recover, and one hell of an atmosphere in Castlebar.. like most posters I’m looking forward.
    Donegal masterminded by Murphy versus mayo masterminded by AOS. Mouthwatering and invaluable experience for the upand coming stars.
    I thought we could have brought on subs but earlier, always my whinge, but again good for James McCormack, that he is on the fringe of things.

  124. Well done lads
    Good win
    Into Quarter final now at home really.
    Two weeks off will seem like a month.
    Really fancy our chances against Donegal.
    Our team cant be analysed so I have given up.
    Final thoughts to Andy.
    What a second half. Pure class.

  125. Amayofan, hennelly would have flapped at those high balls. It’s a good job none of the management team listen to you. Let the management do their job and enjoy the win.

  126. Got the result anyway despite another lacklustre performance.
    So that’s all that matters. Was always going to come down to a last day winner takes all clash

    Donegal seem to be badly struck by injuries now too which will suit us. J mcgee n mcgee mc fadden and ban Gallagher all likely out now

    Mayo have a major issue with the goalkeeping position at the moment. AOS badly out of form too, game passed him by completely

  127. @ Sean Burke.. I would actually agree with a lot of what you said there. The problem is, it’s called common sense; something lacking in the average Mayo supporter. Common sense would ask why a County like Mayo haven’t won an All Ireland for 60 years.. Common sense would ask how we didn’t win at least two All Irelands with this panel; one of the best we had in decades.. Common sense would ask why new players are being tested only now..Common sense would ask why the Mayo team, once highly thought of all over the Country, is now been laughter at by people who follow GAA.. Oh yes,, I am 78 years of age and actually touched Sam all those years ago, but what would I know?? I will be so popular now… 😉 🙂

  128. Uncontested high balls have led to all ireland losing moments in the past, A Mayo Fan.

    Insanity of the highest order what you are suggesting. You are insisting we do something that has specifically and demonstrably cost us massive games in the past.

    Beyond belief.

  129. Revielino, you forgot to carry the one in your sums there. The one about donegal drawing with kerry who beat us by 10. Blinkered maths at its finest.
    The gulf in quality between the two games was massive. We haven’t played to anywhere near that level since the final in 17, almost 2 years ago. Of course its not impossible but I find it hard to see at this stage how we can magic up a performance of that quality in two weeks.
    Of course it was great to win today and it should be celebrated that a hodoo 68 years old has been finally laid to rest. The other 68 year old hoodoo is one we’ll have to forget about righting this year. We’re just not at that level anymore. That penny well and truly dropped with me today after watching the second game, especially when neither team was at full strength. Regardless of the result in 2 weeks, I for one think we’ve had a very good year.

  130. I dont see anyone ‘laughing’ at us Joe McDonagh. What a thing to say after 5 tough weeks on the go. After all the injuries we are still there. Them warriors and us havent thrown in the towel yet.

  131. The vast majority of Mayo fans in conversation during second game in Croker all shared one view which was their delight to take the win and bring the final game to Castlebar, pack it to the rafters and lets see what might happen (also other view shared by all – Andy what a man). When stuck in the tense atmosphere its hard to reflect on these goal keeper moments people are banging on about here but let me say this, when the Meath lad bore down on goal myself and most Mayo supporters around all shared one thought – he still has to get by Clarke! And he didn’t…now guys that is massive in a stadium like Croker where you are sure to face a few one on one situations as a keeper from any half decent team and most likely face a fair few such one on one situations from a top team. Clarke pulled two out of the sky in the first half and he was challenged at the time, he leapt off his line in second to clear ball and man and hurt himself if necessary. He gave one/two bad kick outs in second half and I’m not including the one to Leeroy who called the ball and then slowed into it so that was his error not Clarke’s.
    I for one would be pretty confident that whatever lessons there are to be learned from today will be taken on board by JH and management and we will have a right cut again the next day out. Well done Mayo supporters once again today.

  132. We need to change our goalie against Donegal,otherwise w.e are finished i don’t believe Rob conceded a goal in the all Ireland either

  133. @mayomark – That’s unfair and you’re possible blinkered by blind loyalty to Clarke (and at the same time I respect that). Imo Hennelly is top shot stopper, his restarts are brilliant and provide us with platform going forward. What beggers believe is for us to limp on with an non functioning restart.

  134. Corrick bridge you mad thing…..hennelly gave a penalty to Dublin and got black carded in the final. Clarke does the basics of goal keeping really well,.hennelly doesn’t ……simple as that!

  135. AMayoFan it’s Clarke, Schlingernmann or someone outside the panel.Not Hennelly
    he’s got enough chances at this point.

    Get the impression there’s some wind up merchants on the forum bringing this up again

  136. Have a look at the 2013 All-Ireland final, Corick Bridge. While you’re at it, check out the moment of goalkeeping genius that led to the decisive penalty in the 2016 AIF replay. Let us know how you get on.

    There are two elements to a successful short kickout: 1, a keeper who can hit an available team mate, and 2, an actual available team mate to hit. Clarke was very poor on the first count today. But he had no help on the second count either. When a keeper is struggling, his team mates have got to make runs and give him options.

  137. Lot of negativity here for a 9 point win. I watched both games and have plenty of reasons to be confident the next day. Sure, Kerry v Donegal had better quality, but we know that’s in us when it needs to be. We are short a few players and it’s hard to think any of Diarmuid, Paddy or others that are injured today will start the next day, though they might come on. But Donegal have a few injuries also.

    It would be great to stop revisiting the goalkeeping debate. In my opinion, both are great keepers, Clarke is the best shot stopper, hennelly might have a better directed kickout but it’s the 0 in the goals column that matters to me. Saying if we start one keeper over another then we haven’t a hope is a bit ridiculous.

    Donegal at home in an all Ireland quarter final – I’d have taken that at the start of the year never mind after last Sunday.

  138. @centerfield I’m no wind up merchant and if you’re season holder you will know my face.
    There is hostility coming from pro Clarke which only serves to distract from our admisal kickouts performance. We desparetly need to address this…. For the cause

  139. Quite amazing why some contributors are still basking in the afterglow of the Rochford era, during which we won nothing . As for the goalkeeping choices – nobody can state with any degree of certainty which is the better option, as one has perceived kick-out limitations while the other has perceived failings under high balls. On balance however, I’m happier when Clarke is there. One of our perceived less speedy defenders was benched during today’s 2nd half in favour of a panel member who did not demonstrate to me today that he possesses the required pace at this level – hope I’m wrong. Well done to James Horan & panel for a gutsy performance.Of course we are eminently capable of beating Donegal & probably will, as we will not be favourites to so do – Dublin is just another challenge.

  140. Okay, just had a quick look at the comments there. Almost forgot we won a Championship match by nine point today!

    Look, people, it’s really simple – either everyone stops sniping at each other, posting all kinds of snarky comments designed to wind others up, or else I’m going to turf the lot of you into moderation until I get back. It’s your choice.

    I’ve a provisional list drawn up already and unless several of you wind you necks in sharpish I’ll be forced to act on this. I don’t want to do this but too many of you are taking the piss at this stage for me not to. Over to you …

  141. Corick Bridge, I’m a big fan of Robbie but he’s not in the same league as Clarke (the best we’ve ever had) You might like to have a re-watch of the 2013 all Ireland before you start saying Robbie never conceded a goal(s) in a final. Hard to take you seriously when you come out with clangers like that

  142. Day J who had two own goals scored against him? I completely agree that David Clarke is a good shot stopper but his kickouts are shocking,I don’t want to criticise anyone who gives so much time to Mayo

  143. wouldn’t agree with opinion that AOS WAS off pace today….maybe a bit but i am just home and watching match back and think he really put in a good shift

  144. I have made the case for Clarke all along, and a very good vantage point in Croke Park today . I have to say some of his restarts were dodgy, very dodgy… Some of it was Clarke’s fault but not all of it….We have next weekend free, badly needed…If Clarke is to stay in Goal, we our team needs to work on some restart cheorography… Our Goalkeeper whoever he is need’s to know to whom the Ball is being kicked out to, in the different circumstances at different times that pertain during the match, and our outfield Player’s need to know the protocol as well….At time’s that didn’t seem to be the case today, our Goalkeeper David Clarke seemed to change his mind at particular time’s . It’s an obvious area where work needs to be done on… However Clarke was at his shot stopping best again today, excellent in the air and brave as a lion…. Boyler was my MotM, closely followed by the timeless Andy Moran… We would have taken your hand off the results we got in Croke Park today… I couldn’t wait for the second Match, but I will get a good look at Donegal on Saturday August 3rd … Hope it’s a sell out, with a brilliant atmosphere…We need to win, where as Donegal only need a draw…. Let’s make the Mayo Home Support a major plus for Mayo…. Hopefully some of our Boy’s will be back fit for action again, we are missing ye badly but if and when ye are back, ye will get one hell of a welcome…We can do this!

  145. It is ok to have different opinions, lets not fallout over them though. Not going to get into goalie debate, today was just about getting a win.
    Second game was really good, and shows that the Dublin march will have a few steeper steps to climb than they have encountered to date. Injuries may play a big part, can we get most back, if McBrearty out then a big loss for Donegal. Who knows, Donegal will rightly be favourites, but we would have taken this situation post Roscommon game.

  146. Ah Now.

    Not so blonkerrd.

    I don’t remeber David Moran the man of the match against us playing today against Donegal and I don’t remember Donegal playing 3 qualifiers before getting in to the 8’s which we did before playing Kerry.

    Kerry was our 4th game on the spin on their home patch where they hadn’t lost for 24 years.

    No blinkers Ah Now.

  147. @Michaelincork

    When there are two matches on, the anthem is always played before the final one, not the first one. So it was played before the Kerry Donegal game.

  148. Please tell me that picture going around of the girl holding the child of Prague in croke Park is fake… We really do embarrass ourselves with the over the top stuff

  149. I know people are saying allot negativity with our win. I’m delighted with the win thought we were poor (meath were worse). As of our chances next day so let me say this I do feel we can beat Donegal. Today was my first chance I got to see them up close since Bonner took charge. Lovely quality footballers and pace, energy and intensity was high. There pattern of play is simliar to ourselves. I look forward to Horan plan to get us over this one… It starts with correcting our restarts

  150. @leantimes – exactly I couldnt agree more. I saw man of the match Boyle with his back to ball on restart.
    So much more needs to happen to aid Clarke. Hennelly has to be consider next day

  151. Lads and lassies- would ye give over about the goalie debate. They are both super keepers with flaws and some like one and some the other. No keeper is perfect. James will pick the team to win and we’ll support them. This over and back about goalie is actually getting petty. Yes it’s a serious debate but make your point and move on.

  152. Worth noting we scored 2 – 17 today despite some terrible shooting.

    A Moran still has so much to offer and Carr did well also.

    One major negative was how easy Meath ran through centre of our defence….that has to be closed off for Donegal.

    Can’t quite understand some person’s negativity re Clarke. He did very well today overall…shot stopping and in the air (where he’s also excellent).

    The keeper debate apart from being tiresome at this juncture is also moot…….Clarke will start against Donegal whether some people like it or not.

  153. Rev.
    Conviently failing to mention 3 regular donegal defenders missing today.
    Time will tell. There are 4 teams that showed this weekend that they are contenders. Unfortunately we’re not one of them. I accept we’re a team in transition, many on here think we’re contenders this year. That’s the difference.

  154. Looking at the stats, Mayo won 76% (16 of 21) of their own kickouts and Meath 64% (16 of 25).
    In the other game Kerry won 80% (21of 26) of their own kickouts and Donegal won 88% (22 of 25). In fairness, the kick out is a particular strength of the Donegal goal keeper. However, there is more to goal keeping than kicking out the ball, and the goal keeper needs someone to kick to.

  155. @spotlight. I’ve been one to call restarts. Really do you think he did well on his lockout? I saw it different.

    Anyway, so so so so glad of break. We will win this next one. Horan will correct what’s needed

  156. Goalkeepers are under huge pressure when teams go for the cheesy american sounding “full press”. You seen the Kerry keeper almost cost them the game today with Donegal messing up a certain goal chance. Donegal will try to force Clarke to kick it long next day but with both O’Sheas on the pitch should Mayo fear that really. I noticed Donegal took to fisting the ball instead of fielding it from long kicks tailor made to put McLoughlin in to pick up the pieces. I have to say McHugh is very exciting and he will look to get onto those breaks too.

  157. @Moose 97.. Why does a picture of a Mayo fan with a ‘Child of Prague’ bother you?…It definitely doesn’t bother me. And I personally am not religious but people all people are entitled to have their own beliefs, if that’s what it actually is!.. The more Mayo fan’s the better I think, I wouldn’t want to exclude anyone of faith, anymore than I would want to exclude non religious person either… They are all great, … Our Ship will sail into Stormy Waters, how are we still afloat? …On Saturday the 3rd August in Mchale Park Castlebar, fingers will be crossed by non superstitious people, prayer’s will be said by athiests , even more prayer’s will be said by the true believers, and that’s both Donegal and Mayo, sometimes it’s actually a good thing for the world to see what it actually means to you!

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