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It's Taken One Game For Pat Spillane To Write Off Mayo

It's Taken One Game For Pat Spillane To Write Off Mayo
By Gavin Cooney Updated
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The league, or to give it its former title, At The End Of The Day It's Only The League, has thankfully resumed, to give us a tantalising glimpse at what a proper Championship should be like, what with its even and fair structure consisting of regular games of importance between sides of a similar standard.

For some fans, however, the league marks a great loss of innocence; the reality of football has a bothersome habit of puncturing pre-season optimism. This beset Meath fans, this weekend. After the brimming hope of the winter under Andy McEntee, it didn't take the Royals long to revert to type, and were beaten by ten points at home to Kildare.

Mayo fans, by contrast, lost their innocence years ago. They know the unique anguish of pesky hope, so Pat Spillane has decided to disabuse them of that notion altogether.

Mayo were edged out by Monaghan in Castlebar on Saturday night, and Spillane believes that, in defeat, they once again betrayed the weaknesses that have caused them to miss out on an All-Ireland title that is less desired than it is yearned for with religious fervour.

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Speaking on RTE's Lague Sunday, Spillane listed off Mayo's Roll of Pain:

So right, last night, as a Mayo person, a Mayo team that hasn’t won an All-Ireland since 1951, a Mayo team who hasn’t won the League since 2001, 16 years ago, a Mayo team, who according to newspaper articles this year, whose players were responsible for getting rid of the previous management.

So right, this was their night, big crowd, they’re a passionate crowd. This was their night to send out signals that this is a different team this year.

He then meditated on their failure to do so:

Sadly, the signals were mixed and poor. Monaghan were up for it mentally, were up for it physically, bullied Mayo out of the game. As signals and signs go for the year ahead, not good signals out of Castlebar last night.

And Spillane then cast his eye a bit further forward, by asking the age-old question: why haven't Mayo won an All-Ireland?

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Two reasons – lack of marquee forwards to go with the O’Connors and a lack of an attacking plan. They reverted to type and their decision-making was very poor.

The statistics make grim reading – in the second half, Cillian O’Connor was the only Mayo player to score, they went 22 minutes of the first half without scoring, they went 18 minutes of the second half without scoring, and the first point from play of the second half came in the 24th minute of the second half.

Unless they find a couple of marquee forwards and come up with an attacking plan, they’re never going to win that All-Ireland.

Watch it below.

Pat Spillane on Mayo 

 

See Also: On A Weekend Of High Attendances, The Crowd In Thurles Was Eye-Opening

See Also: Martin Clarke Pretty Much Confirms Retirement From Inter-County Football

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