Wednesday 21 March 2018

'There will be no talking to him for the foreseeable future' - Tomás Ó Sé on Donal Vaughan's crucial red card

Donal Vaughan of Mayo tackles John Small of Dublin
Donal Vaughan of Mayo tackles John Small of Dublin Newsdesk Newsdesk

Kerry legend Tomás Ó Sé believes Mayo's failure to capitalise on their first half dominance and Donal Vaughan's red card ultimately cost them a chance of ending 66 years of heartache.

Vaughan received his marching orders in the 48th minute of a tetchy game after he reacted with a clothesline-style hit on John Small after he had upended Colm Boyle.

Mayo were trailing by a point at the time, were about to have a kickable free and their opponents were about to be reduced to 14 men but that potential turning point was negated by Vaughan's actions.

Speaking to's GAA podcast The Throw-In, Ó Sé had sympathy for Vaughan but felt his dismissal was a pivotal moment in the game.

"The Vaughan incident sticks out for me. You have the bones of a half an hour left in the match and you lose a body," he said.

"You're a point behind, you have a free in front of the post at the Hill 16 end to go draw game and then you have the numerical advantage for what turned out to be over 30 minutes.

"He didn't intentionally try to get himself sent off.

"It was a rush of blood, it has happened to myself a number of times. I got sent off numerous times and I knew I was wrong when I did it.

"By the time he reached the sideline, the poor man, his head was absolutely reeling.

"There will be no talking to him for the foreseeable future.. the next week or two.

"He's done the same amount of work that everyone else has and it's very hard on him. It's ridiculous.

"It's not as if he was standing there, he ran in. It was three or four seconds. I mean count to three or four.

"Grand, run in and give a shove or give a push and lay down a marker and say, 'Hey, we're not going to be bullied here' but to go in the way he did was ridiculous.

"To be fair to Donal Vaughan, it's not the kind of thing you would associate with him."

There were a number of flashpoint during yesterday's game and Ó Sé believes that familiarity has bred contempt

"There is a bit of a hatred between these two teams. There's a kind of a nasty undercurrent there constantly," he added.

"Yes, they respect each other but, and there is probably a lot of them that get on off the field, on the field there is no niceties.

"It's drawn from the amount of times they've played each other over the past few years and they have the best rivalry in the country at the moment. They're the two best teams in the country at the moment."

Ó Sé also felt that Mayo misses in the first half were crucial.

"I've never seen Stephen Cluxton crack like that. Kerry have cracked him in the past but he has evolved as a keeper and I didn't think Mayo could have cracked him as much as they did.

"For me, the dominance they showed, they should definitely have been up four or five points at half-time.

"They went in a point up and Dublin re-grouped inside, they went short with the kick-outs but I still thought Mayo would stay with them.

"Cluxton being beaten and Mayo dominating the midfield exchanges and it not showing on the scoreboard that sticks out for me."


Subscribe to The Throw-In,'s weekly Championship podcast, for the best in GAA discussion and analysis every Monday, with some of the biggest names in football and hurling from Joe Brolly, Tomás Ó'Sé, Brendan Cummins and John Mullane.

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