O’Shea all set to return to action
MAYO manager James Horan is poised to start Aidan O’Shea at midfield against Down in next Saturday evening’s All-Ireland SFC semi-final at Croke Park.
The Breaffy powerhouse hasn’t started a game for the county in more than three months but lined out alongside Barry Moran at centre-field in a trial game last Sunday, and looks set to return to his number nine shirt next weekend.
The 22 years-old has been sidelined recently by a stomach muscle injury but came off the bench against Sligo in the Connacht Final and has been working hard to make up for lost time in recent weeks.
The Mayo team will be revealed to the players at training tonight (Tuesday) and is expected to be released to the general public tomorrow.
The Mayo News understands that Jason Gibbons also caught the management’s eye last weekend while Seamus O’Shea, Alan Freeman and Michael Conroy are also pushing hard for inclusion in the Mayo attack.
However, it remains to be seen what changes, if any, James Horan will make for Mayo’s first ever championship meeting with Down.
The Connacht champions were in Limerick last weekend for a ‘mini’ training camp.
Interestingly, Ballinrobe forward Alan Murphy lined out in the aforementioned ‘A’ v ‘B’ trial game after accepting an invitation to link up with the squad.
Murphy, who is currently contracted to League of Ireland soccer team, Mervue Utd, has been in sparking form for Ballinrobe in recent weeks.
In fact, he is currently the leading scorer in the Mayo senior club championship with 3-20 from three games.
A call-up for the 30 years-old came in the wake of injuries to Pat Harte, Aidan Campbell and Evan Regan, as well as the recent departure of Conor Mortimer.
On the injury front, Peadar Gardiner has recovered from the foot problem that kept him out of the Connacht Final win over Sligo and trained last weekend while Chris Barrett could also come back into contention for a place on the bench.