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Injuries grow for Moran’s Mayo as Laois await

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Injuries grow for Moran’s Mayo as Laois await

Edwin McGreal

AS Mayo’s injury worries continue to mount ahead of Sunday week’s All-Ireland quarter-final against Laois, Mayo manager Mickey Moran has criticised the pressures his players have been put under since the Connacht final.
Speaking in the aftermath of a weekend in which six Mayo players picked up injuries, added to previous injuries to David Brady and Austin O’Malley, Moran says the burden his players have been under with League, championship and U21 games is too much.
“We’ve less than two weeks to go to the quarter-final and people in Mayo expect Mayo to win. I don’t know where that expectation is coming from because it is impossible to prepare as we would like. From the Galway game on we would have liked to have six good training sessions done from then to now but we have only two done and not one full one. In Derry if the county team was preparing for an All-Ireland quarter-final nothing would be allowed to get in the way, it’s obviously not the same everywhere,” said Moran.
Problems with the amount of games his players were playing for the clubs, particularly at U21 which Moran says he knew nothing about, led to Moran and his assistant John Morrison not taking training on Tuesday of last week and a tense stand-off ensued for the next 24 hours.
Calm was restored following a meeting with County Chairman James Waldron on Wednesday and Moran wants to get on with it now, although a list of injuries longer than he would hope for is not helping.
“We have to try and prepare now as best we can but we have so many injuries that it will be impossible to have a proper session on Tuesday and we will have to draft lads in on Thursday to try to have a proper game situation which is what you need for preparation,” added Moran.
Injury concerns centre on David Brady (foot), Austin O’Malley (shoulder), David Heaney (shoulder) and Trevor Mortimer (hamstring) who are the most serious concerns. Ronan McGarrity (dead leg), James Nallen (hamstring), Ciaran McDonald (back), all picked up injuries at the weekend while Colum Lyons didn’t line out for Breaffy due to glandular fever.
“The players have been brilliant but it’s obviously not the ideal scenario. Hopefully we can turn things around, that’s what we have to try to do now and hope the players heal quickly. Something overall has to be done with the situation. Too much pressure is on players. I think there is merit in a county season running from February to June and and club season from July on with a two month off season. It’s certainly not working as it stands,” added Moran.
Laois will be Mayo’s opponents in Croke Park on Sunday week and Mickey Moran was present in Portlaoise to witness Mick O’Dwyer’s men defeat Offaly 1-9 to 0-4. The Derry man was impressed by what he saw.
“The game was the type of derby game I expected but Laois were excellent in the second half. They were only two points up at half-time after having a strong breeze to their backs but Laois excelled in the second half, keeping Offaly to just one point, a free. They showed character, strength, fitness and effort and look in great shape. They have Padraig Clancy back now and it will be a very tough game for us, especially as they are so used to and suited to Croke Park.”

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