Saturday 24 February 2018

'Imagine the atmosphere if these giants lined up side by side' - David Brady has bold plan for dealing with Donaghy

Kieran Donaghy (left) and Aidan O'Shea (right).
Kieran Donaghy (left) and Aidan O'Shea (right).
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Just like in 2006 and 2014, how Mayo deal with Kerry full forward Kieran Donaghy could again decide whether the westerners finally end their All-Ireland drought.

The dextrous Donaghy has routinely wreaked havoc in the Mayo defence throughout his career, scoring goals in the 2006 All-Ireland final and 2014 semi-final replay.

And even now at 34, the three-time All Star looks set to be the fulcrum of the Kingdom attack this Sunday against Stephen Rochford's side after a dominant aerial display against Galway in the quarter-final.

Regular Mayo fullback Ger Cafferkey hasn't had much success on Donaghy in his career, and was dropped for the comprehensive win over Roscommon in the quarter-final replay on the August Bank Holiday Monday. Donal Vaughan appears the most suited to the task of picking up Donaghy in the final four clash, but former Mayo midfielder David Brady has offered a left-field suggestion for dealing with the quadruple All-Ireland champion.

Aidan O'Shea is enjoying one of the strongest seasons of his career, and has been particularly dominant under the high ball, which Brady thinks sets up a potentially mouthwatering battle with Donaghy.

Writing in his Sunday World column, Brady explains why switching O'Shea onto the Kerry attacker could pay dividend for Mayo.

"If I was the Mayo manager, I would go for a bolder option," Brady said.

"I believe that Aidan O'Shea is the player to keep Donaghy quiet. For Mayo, this move would be fighting fire with fire as well as throwing all of Eamonn Fitzmaurice's planned objectives for curbing O'Shea out the window. O'Shea would not let Donaghy win clean ball.

"Just imagine the atmosphere in the stadium if these two giants lined up side by side. More importantly, once Donaghy was getting no joy inside, he would move out the field, which would suit O'Shea."

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