Sunday 4 December 2016

The Sunday Game panel crushed Mayo people everywhere with their unanimous answer to one simple question

Published 02/10/2016 | 20:12

Will this Mayo team win an All-Ireland?

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That was the question in the minds of everyone who watched yesterday's titanic tussle at Croke Park in the All-Ireland final replay. As has happened so often in the past, Mayo were once again on the wrong side of a narrow defeat, their annual agonising loss arriving again like clockwork.

Read more: 'The most culchie thing ever said on The Sunday Game!': Tomas O Se got a good slagging for his description of a Kerry star

Their championship exits in the last six seasons are a model of heartbreaking consistency - semi-final, final, final, semi-final, semi-final, final.

The latest exercise in devastation begged a simple question on last night's 'Saturday Game' - will this Mayo team ever get over the biggest hurdle of all and finally reclaim the Sam Maguire for their county?

Granted, players like Andy Moran, Alan Dillon, Keith Higgins and Colm Boyle are coming towards the end of their careers, but similarly, Aidan O'Shea, Lee Keegan and Cillian O'Connor - three of the most influential players in the game - still have plenty of their prime left to play.

However, when host Des Cahill put the question to his six-man panel, not one returned a positive verdict, which is a depressing thought for a fan base - and a set of players - who have brushed glory with their fingertips so often.

Colm O'Rourke, Pat Spillane, Dessie Dolan, Ciaran Whelan and Tomas O Se all answered the question of whether this Mayo team will win an All-Ireland with a short no, while Joe Brolly didn't say yes or no straight out.

"There is no reason why they can't win the All-Ireland, they were there to win that game today," Brolly said.

Mayo fans will no doubt agree with the Derry pundit, and the westerners should be better equipped to get over the line next season given that Stephen Rochford will have had another year of coaching his charges.

Perhaps Brolly summed up the pain of Mayo fans when he simply said 'Why?'.

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