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Home improvement needed

MIKE FINNERTY

MAYO are set to make some changes to their team for the first time in the National Football League for next Sunday’s crunch match with Limerick at McHale Park, Castlebar.
John O’Mahony told The Mayo News last night that there were likely to be some changes in personnel from the side that lost to Donegal ten days ago. He also said that with the exception of Ciaran McDonald, everyone was available for selection with Ronan McGarrity back in contention for a starting place again after recovering from injury.
“We want to be playing in the upper division next year so it’s crucial that we take as much as we can from our home games,” the Mayo manager explained.
“The motivation for individual players in games like this is that we still have to identify the 30 players for our championship panel. We haven’t picked a team yet for Sunday but I think there may be a couple of changes. This game could be a case of horses for courses because Limerick play with a much more direct style than Donegal did.
“The Donegal game was absorbing, it took a bit out of our lads,“ he added. “We were very disappointed not to take something out of that game. We have said all along that with us only having three home matches it’s vital that we win them. But Limerick’s form is good, they beat Fermanagh in Clones on Sunday and were unlucky against Dublin.”
O’Mahony fielded a second-string team against Clare last Saturday for a challenge game which Mayo won by six points. Among those to impress were Enda Devenney, Aidan Higgins, Aidan Campbell and Mark Ronaldson, and the manager conceded that the game had given him plenty of food for thought.
“I was delighted with the Clare game as it gave us an opportunity to take a look at other players, other things. Now when we sit down to pick our team this week we can take into account a lot of the information that we gathered last weekend.”
Limerick shot 2-10 last Sunday on the way to beating Fermanagh and Mickey Ned O’Sullivan’s new-look team are beginning to find some form. Johnny McCarthy, Pat Ahern, John Galvin and Michéal Reidy are all familiar names but the rest of their squad enjoy a low profile.
“Mickey O’Sullivan is working very hard with them and he has a much changed side this year,” admitted John O’Mahony. “Limerick are a strong, physical team. John Galvin is a big influence at midfield, Johnny McCarthy is a good defender and I know Kieran Gallagher, who watched them in Clones on Sunday, was very impressed with their physicality. This will be another big test for us.”

Fixture
NATIONAL LEAGUE DIVISION 1A
MAYO v LIMERICK

SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 25
AT 2.30PM, McHALE PARK, CASTLEBAR.
REFEREE: M DUFFY (SLIGO)

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