MAKING PLANS Mayo manager James Horan is due to meet Mayo GAA chiefs in the coming weeks. Pic: Sportsfile
ALL Mayo GAA clubs have been given an opportunity to submit questions for James Horan ahead of his end of season review meeting with senior County Board officials this month.
Last week’s County Board meeting spent 45 minutes discussing the fall-out from the All-Ireland Final defeat to Tyrone with 14 different club delegates speaking on the subject.
It was decided at the end of the discussion that all clubs would be given a deadline of 6pm this coming Friday to submit their questions for the Mayo manager.
This came after a suggestion from Aghamore delegate, Larry Warde, that ‘specific questions be sent to the County Secretary’ that could be put to Mayo’s management.
“We all understand how much hope and expectation there was for the All-Ireland Final, and realise that everybody is extremely disappointed,” said Mayo GAA chairman, Liam Moffatt.
“A review will take place between the senior officers of the board and all of the senior coaching team where aspects of preparation and performance will be reviewed.
“The review will take place within the next two weeks and updates will follow.
“The timing is deliberate to give a break to all involved. It allows everyone involved to process and verbalise their thoughts, and we did not want to proceed with a review without hearing club’s thoughts on the matter.
“What will be in the review will be all aspects of performance,” he continued.
“You’re looking at an open and honest discussion on the technical, tactical, psychological and physical sides of it. Those four pillars encompass nearly everything.
“Obviously logistics will be discussed; is there learnings for the County Board in terms of supporting the players and management? Is there learnings for the management team?
“Those questions will be asked, and constructive criticism and constructive feedback from clubs is welcomed. We want to find solutions.”
Pat McCartan of Hollymount/Carramore, one of the first delegates to speak on the topic, said:
“We have to learn from lessons of the past. And get the thing right. . . I would describe myself as a broken man coming out of Croke Park, and it’s getting harder and harder to go up the road.”
Ballinrobe delegate, Gerry O’Malley, who was one of many speakers who said that they had ‘no issue with the players’ remarked: “It looks to me like we didn’t learn from the Kerry-Tyrone game. . There seemed to be no Plan B. It’s about our ability to change our style of play when the need arises.”
“There was significant analysis done,” replied Liam Moffatt. “There were attendees at the Kerry-Tyrone game. The amount of time put into analysis was huge.
“Was the four week wait a bit harder than previous, when every other game was every two weeks? With an All-Ireland Final as well, you’ll always have an element of performance anxiety; when something doesn’t go right for you.
“When you see outstanding players mis-execute a simple handpass in the early minutes of the game, that’s an error, that’s anxiety. The expectation, the pressure can affect performance.
“Those points will be raised and asked because they’re constructive.”
“Mistakes were made both on and off the field, we accept that,” added Dermot Butler, the Mayo GAA secretary. “But to be fair, until we meet with James [Horan] and his backroom team it would be unfair for us, on this side of the table, to speculate on anything.
“James Horan and his management team also have a right of reply. We will ask the questions.
“Let’s be honest, there was a minor and and an Under-20 team that didn’t perform this year either,” he added. “The [senior] hurlers were the only team that brought All-Ireland glory to the county. So when clubs are sending in questions, let them include questions for minors and Under-20s management as well.”