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Galway v Mayo Analysis: Why Galway's Championship Run Ended So Abruptly

Galway v Mayo Analysis: Why Galway's Championship Run Ended So Abruptly
By Matt Hurley Updated
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Mayo have done it again. They’ve knocked their major rivals Galway out of the All Ireland SFC with a big performance. 

There were some critical things Kevin McStay’s team did right, hence why they won.

However, going into Dublin next week, Mayo needs to improve in some aspects, especially around the kickout.

Here are some statistical takeaways from the game in Salthill. 

Galway v Mayo: Use of the Gale

It is the elephant in the room.

Galway led 0-8 to 0-3 having played with the synonymous gale force wind in the first half.

The Tribesmen scored 0-6 from turnovers compared to Mayo’s 0-2.


Their intensity seemed to be on point too. Padraic Joyce’s side conceded no scorable free and won seven turnovers inside their own ‘45 without fouling.

However, Mayo won the second half by 1-7 to 0-4 with the gale.

They built up a better scoring margin and also shot more accurately than Galway did.


Galway’s shot accuracy with the wind was 53%, not great.

Mayo’s in contrast was 80%.

That was the difference.



It was unlike Mayo in many ways to be calm in front of the posts in a pressure game and Galway to be the opposite.

Whatever McStay said at half time worked.

Just to clarify how tough it was playing against the gale force wind, Galway’s shot conversion rate was 40% while Mayo’s was 37%.


The use of substitutes

Maybe this point epitomises the contrasting experience of both managers.

At half time, Mayo brought on Enda Hession instead of Jason Doherty.

A masterstroke by McStay in many ways as it allowed Eoghan McLaughlin and particularly Paddy Durcan and David McBrien to make more breaking runs.


Durcan hit two brilliant scores while McBrien burst through for that all-important goal.

Cillian O’Connor was brought on at the right time and showed why it was a good decision after hitting a point.

In contrast, Galway brought off Damien Comer. Last year’s All Star might have been injured but it was clear that Ian Burke did not add the same focal point for a long ball.

The long ball tactic caused Mayo problems in the first half but that presence wasn’t felt in the following 35 minutes.

Maybe it was worth putting Matthew Tierney or Peter Cooke in there, a tall powering presence.


Also, not to bring on Robert Finnerty or Tomo Culhane until the last 10 minutes was questionable.

Mayo’s second half intent

It was mentioned before that Galway managed to score 0-6 from turnovers in the opening half, Mayo scored 1-5 in the second half from turnovers.

McStay’s team bided their time and in the second half, they pounced. 

Ryan O’Donoghue didn’t even take a shot in the first half. Within the first ten minutes of the second spell, he is on 0-2.

As mentioned before, Paddy Durcan seemed to be more up for it and so did Tommy Conroy. 

They sensed blood and went for it.

When Mayo are in the groove, they look seriously good.

Dublin will be watching with interest.

Will Dublin push up on Mayo's kickouts?

First negative about Mayo here, and quite unexpected considering the year they have had in this facet.

Galway put pressure on Colm Reape's restarts in the first half and Mayo lost eight out of 14.

Reape even kicked two of them out of play.

Overall, the green and red lost 11 out of 21, only winning 47%.

Lots of people will wonder after this game whether Dublin will push up next Sunday.

Galway's poor shooting

Just one point in regards to the losers on the day.

The shooting from them last Sunday was unrecognisably off colour.

They converted 48% which was shocking.

They had more shots than their opponents (25 to 18) but still lost.

Kilmacud Crokes man Shane Walsh has been taking a lot of flack on social media in the last few days.

There was no doubt watching him live that he looked tired after a long year.

The stats back that up.

He took 9 shots, converted 4, that’s under 50%.

A pale shadow of his remarkable 0-9 in the 2022 All Ireland final.

The extra long break might do the former Kilkerrin-Clonbeirne man the world of good.

For Galway, it was a disappointing afternoon after what looked like a promising season.

SEE ALSO: All-Ireland SFC Knockout Draw: Epic Quarter-Final Fixtures Confirmed


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