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Brolly's shot at Mayo on target


Joe Brolly. Picture: Ray McManus / SPORTSFILE

Joe Brolly. Picture: Ray McManus / SPORTSFILE

Cillian O'Connor, Mayo. Picture: Diarmuid Greene / SPORTSFILE

Cillian O'Connor, Mayo. Picture: Diarmuid Greene / SPORTSFILE


Joe Brolly. Picture: Ray McManus / SPORTSFILE

MAYO amassed a magnificent 4-16 against Galway last month, without a single marquee forward in their line-up. So said James Horan at the time, so it must be true.

Or to quote the man himself after that pulverising Pearse Stadium display: "Ah yeah, we've no marquee forwards at all, so I'm amazed we got that score today."

This Sunday in McHale Park, they take on Roscommon for a place in the Connacht final without the services of Cillian O'Connor, who suffered a dislocated shoulder in a recent club game.

Given that the stricken O'Connor is a free-taker par excellence and a two-time Young Footballer of the Year, this would suggest that Mayo will start with 'minus one' marquee forwards against the Rossies ... except, of course, that he was never a marquee forward in the first place (according to his own manager).

Just as well then, that Roscommon have named a team without their most high-profile marquee forward – Donie Shine, who may be fit for a bench role after being dogged by hamstring issues all season.

Now, it may have crossed your mind at this stage that Solo Run is merely aping the sardonic lead of the Mayo supremo, who quickly went on to clarify that he actually possesses a forward line "as good as any in the country".

Not everyone, though, appears to agree ... with Joe Brolly wisecracking that, if he ever finds himself in front of a firing squad, his enemies should make sure that none of his would-be executioners are from Mayo!

The Derry All-Ireland winner is no stranger to antagonising the green and red, and his comments before last year's All-Ireland final – when he forensically dissected Mayo's so-called "cynical" and "tactical" fouling against Dublin in the semi-final – drew a belated, but no-less-furious response from Horan back in January.


One wonders how Mayo folk will respond to Brolly's latest barb. Writing in his Gaelic Life column, the Sunday Game pundit reveals how he has been on the receiving end of hate mail, adding: "Last year I received one from Mayo finishing with the immortal line, 'It is just a pity that before the ceasefire, you were not put against a wall and shot'.

"If he had included his address I would have replied, 'If the firing squad are to hit the target, make sure none of them are from Mayo'."

Even Hawk-Eye (whatever about Horan) might agree that this one hit the target.