Cathal Dervan by Cathal Dervan
Mayo can blame themselves after All-Ireland loss to Dublin
Posted on Thursday, September 26, 2013 at 07:00 AM
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|The Mayo team huddle|
As their minor team basked in the glory of Sunday’s win in their Croke Park decider, so Mayo boss James Horan and his players had to face the fans in another homecoming born on the back of disappointment.
Apparently, according to Twitter at least, one Mayo speaker promised the crowd at McHale Park that “America got Bid Laden in the end and Mayo will eventually get Sam.”
Now there is little to suggest any similarity between Mayo’s desire to win Gaelic football’s greatest prize and the hunt for the world’s most hated terrorist who was eventually caught.
But the remark does give you an idea into the hurt those of a Mayo persuasion are feeling right now after a second All-Ireland final defeat to a row.
The difference – and the good thing as far as Horan and his squad are concerned – is that Mayo have only themselves to blame for their defeat to Dublin this time around. And only they can put it right.
Talk of a curse dating all the way back to their last All-Ireland win at the start of the 1950s is nonsense.
Talk that the referee didn’t give them enough time to go for an equalizer after Cillian O’Connor’s last free on Sunday is irrelevant.
Talk that Dublin were too cynical as they hung on for victory is complete rubbish.
Mayo were the better side in the first half of Sunday’s game but didn’t prove it on the scoreboard.
Dublin were by far the better team in the second half and did prove it with scores as Mayo managed to offer up little or nothing aside from open play, an Andy Moran goal aside, in that same period.
The two Bernard Brogan goals -- the first against the run of play it must be said -- and a greater ability to hang onto the lead once they got it are the reasons why Dublin are All-Ireland champions this morning.
They didn’t want it any more than Mayo, but they wanted to score more than Mayo.
And that’s something only the Mayo players can sort out in the future – if this current batch ever get this far again. Put simply, they have missed the boat now for two years in a row.
Next time it may well sail without them.