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Cute Cavan men catch Mayo

Sport

Cavan’s Gearóid McKiernan fires the ball past Mayo goalkeeper David Clarke for the only goal of last Sunday’s National League match in Castlebar. Pic:Michael McLaughlin

Mike Finnerty


MAYO will need to win one of their last two remaining matches in the National League against Tyrone or Donegal if they’re to secure their Division 1 status for 2018.
That is the stark reality facing the county’s footballers after last Sunday’s defeat to Cavan in Castlebar as they slumped to their third loss in five games.
Mayo travel to Omagh next Sunday to play Tyrone (3pm) in a repeat of last year’s All-Ireland SFC quarter-final and they will welcome Donegal to MacHale Park seven days later.
Both Aidan and Seamus O’Shea could return to Mayo’s match-day squad for the first time in this campaign after they both played for 60 minutes for Breaffy on Sunday morning.
However, Mayo won’t know until later this week if either Diarmuid O’Connor or Jason Doherty will have recovered from their hamstring injuries in time to face the Ulster champions.
Speaking to The Mayo News after last Sunday’s shock two-point defeat against the Breffni men, Stephen Rochford tried to accentuate the positives despite his team’s perilous league position.
“We only had two points this time last year and had to go to Roscommon who were beating all around them at that stage,” he recalled.
“We have an opportunity to win a game next week, but Omagh will be a very difficult place to go to. But we’ll take on the challenge.”
Yet again Mayo paid a heavy pride for conceding a goal that was described as ‘soft’ by their manager.
Gearóid McKiernan’s effort just before half-time gave Cavan a huge lift while Mayo seemed rattled.
“That was crucial,” admitted Rochford.
“If we were four points up at half-time we would have asked different questions of Cavan.
“We played Kerry here in the league last year and, having played well, conceded a goal just before half-time and lost that game as well.
“But we got ourselves back into the game in the second half, went ahead, but then conceded two points quickly.
“These are tough games and the younger players that are coming in will learn a lot from them.”

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