Things have gone as much to plan results wise for Mayo as Stephen Rochford could have hoped for in his first two games in charge of the side. But next week will see a steep step up in the standard of opposition on what his side have faced so far when Mayo make the trip to Hyde Park to take on Roscommon in round three of the FBD League.
Rochford said after Sunday’s win over IT Sligo about the step up in quality “That goes without saying. It’s well known that Roscommon have a good bit of work done, I think maybe they had a challenge match, if not two played before the new year. They’ve a lot more work done than us, they had a very strong team out and a good scoreline kicked last week. So it will most undoubtably be our toughest challenge are regards quality and the team we’re going to play. But that’s good, I think it will serve us best, if we can preform to a quality level, we may come out with a result, if not I think it will serve us well going to Cork two weeks later.”
When asked would he be happy with Mayo putting in a good performance next weekend and they didn’t win the game and they would then have a clear weekend to prepare before they take on Cork in the opening round of the league on Leeside he said, “To be honest, I haven’t really thought that far ahead. We’ll see what sort of team we can pull together and operate coming towards the weekend, but you can’t beat games either.
‘But you’re weighing that up with the aspect of being able to plan and try things out and probably more specifically for Cork. Look, we’ll probably have a better idea of what that is next Sunday morning regards what level of team we have and where we find ourselves fitness wise and whether we want the week and whether that would be better. But we’ll be going out to win that game, in that manner we’re looking to get to the final.”
As for the game he’d just watched when asked what he would take out of it, he said “I’m reasonably happy from the basis that we showed a good attitude to the game throughout. Taking it all in the context of (it being the ) second week back, difficult enough conditions from the point of view of soft under foot and a greasy ball. But I thought the lads did well. We kicked 17 scores, probably would like us to be a position to convert more of the goal chances of half chances we created, but hopefully we’ll be able to address them over the next three weeks before we go to Cork
“I think we definitely showed a willingness to move the ball quickly and again we’re feeding the players bits and pieces every week trying to expand it and asking a bit more of them. I think that they bye in large they went around that. Again and we’ve said this to the players, nothing is going to be prefect in January, but it’s a work in progress and we’re happy with the element of progression from last Sunday to this Sunday.”