Search Results for 'Sam Maguire'
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The age-old debate of club versus county seems to raise its ugly head year after year. For a county like ours with such a prominent senior football team that has been in so many All Ireland finals of late it seems we still cannot get the balance right between club and county. The same problem occurred again this year with a fixture pile up as our county champions and genuine All Ireland contenders Castlebar Mitchels had to play six games, six weeks in a row, eventually losing to now Connacht champions Corofin in extra time having run out of gas during that period of extra time. Some may be wondering what about Westport? They had the same conundrum. They even had to replay a county semifinal against Shrule/Glencorrib mid-week such was the backlog of games. However, Westport were not on the go for a continuous 18 months as the Mitchels were, and Westport had plenty in the tank at the final whistle of all their games.
This one is hard to comprehend,very hard. Some are harder to take than others. This defeat is pretty difficult to take. Our 1996 loss to Meath is forever etched in my memory for all the wrong reasons, it's very similar to last Sunday.
And we are off again. It has been a long and winding road this year for Mayo on the field and when we thought we had reached the final destination two weeks ago, the car was pointed for home, neither full of joy nor regret, but full of more questions and possible answers. The steering wheel will be turned out on to the road and thousands of cars pointed east to the capital once more, thousands of Mayo fans will make the trek from Blacksod to the bridge in Shrule, full of hope, expectation, and delight tomorrow morning. For this Mayo team have another shot at glory, not redemption. It may be 65 long years since Sam Maguire came here festooned in green and red ribbons, but over the years in between hundreds of Mayo men have donned the green and red and given us some glorious days. Days that other counties could only dream of being involved in, we have been there, we have stood among the greats of the game and we have never done anything but seen our warriors give their all for their families, clubs, towns, schools, communities, themselves, and for us, those cheering them on from the sidelines.
Mayo put in their best 70 minutes of football under Stephen Rochford's watch to easily account for Kildare in their third round qualifier in sun drenched Elverys MacHale Park last Saturday. There is no question it had to have been the most relaxing 70 minutes Rochford has had since he took over the reins. The opposition has to be taken into account however. Kildare are no longer a force in football, they struggle to beat division four teams, they are probably the fifth best team in a Province that has only one decent team, but as the saying goes Mayo can only beat what is put in front of them.
What a mouth watering clash we have in prospect for Sunday. Some of the biggest names in planet GAA competing against each other. We can now definitely say the three best teams in the country are left in the race for Sam Maguire, no one can argue against that. Kerry did all they had to do to get by Tyrone and reach another final but Sunday’s clash between Mayo and Dublin is the one we have been waiting for. The games against Dublin are incomparable especially at championship level. People all around lose the run of themselves. Croke Park is a cauldron of unimaginable noise, even deafening while wearing a headset and on radio duty. The league game in McHale Park this year between the two sides almost attracted a crowd of 16, 000, the likes of which I have never seen before for such an early season clash, which is where I am going to start. Dublin came into that game on a serious losing streak and in relegation trouble, Mayo were on the crest of a wave. All Dublin folk will tell you that game was the turning point in their season; they gave Mayo a right trimming winning by 2-18 to 0-10 that evening and went on to comfortably win the league thereafter. They have since won nine games on the spin.