Mayo victory is a good result for Kerry: Jim McGuinness reacts to Connacht champions’ win over Dublin
Mayo enjoyed one of their greatest victories on Saturday night, ending Dublin’s 45-match unbeaten run in the championship.
But once the jubilation calms down, the Connacht champions will know they have nothing won just yet. An All-Ireland final awaits.
Despite their heroics, Jim McGuinness says Mayo will need an improvement if they are to deliver a first All-Ireland title since 1951.
“I think this is a good result for Kerry,” the Sky Sports pundit said after Mayo’s 0-17 to 0-14 win.
“What Kerry bring to the table is exactly what Mayo does not want to be facing. They are very hungry themselves. They are ravenous.
“We were at Kerry’s two games [against Clare and Tipperary]. They firmly believe that this is their year. They have got amazing forward options.
“But Mayo will bring everything that they brought tonight. Ryan O’Donoghue stepped up to the plate. Tommy Conroy having been anonymous in the first-half stepped up to the plate. And that’s the type of thing you need, people coming from nowhere to get you over the line. And they did it brilliantly tonight.”
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Nonetheless, the former Donegal boss was impressed with Mayo’s performance. McGuinness is no longer the last manager to topple Dublin in championship football.
“The atmosphere here is incredible, it’s something special to be here. It’s a ‘were you there?’ moment,” he continued.
“[Mayo] turned the screw. It took them a long time to turn the screw, but they did. Once they did, Dublin didn’t have the answers. That’s the bottom line. There were two periods of 10 minutes, and the second half was over 40 minutes. I make it 62, 63 minutes, and Dublin scored four points in that period. They had 10 points at half-time, and their scoring rate fell off a cliff after that.
“You have to give great credit to James Horan and his troops for what they produced in extra-time particularly. They got there and they asked the questions, and when they did ask those questions, the answers were not there from a Dublin point of view.
“What an amazing team, and we have been so fortunate over the last number of years to see Dublin up close year after year after year. What an amazing group of players they were and are. You have got to give them great credit for the last six or seven years.”
Meanwhile, Kieran Donaghy also noted how he was impressed with the Westerners, and how their youngsters stepped delivered when the chips were down.
“With Aidan O’Shea having one of his poorer days and being taken off, not effective. Oisín Mullin out. Cillian O’Connor out,” said the former Kerry star.
“It just shows you that the youth that James Horan has brought through this last number of years, they’re here and they’re here for real. The question now is, can the lid be kept on it for three weeks in the build-up to the final, and can they get that right to go into an All-Ireland final and win it?
“Look at that atmosphere. It’s Mayo’s day.”
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