Former Donegal manager Jim McGuinness has backed Mayo to win their first All-Ireland senior football title in 69 years by beating Dublin.
McGuinness, the last manager to taste victory over the Dubs in the All-Ireland football championship, believes Mayo will upset all the odds and defeat the reigning champions at Croke Park on Saturday.
Mayo haven’t won against the Dubs in the championship since 2012 in the semi-final, before going on to lose to McGuinness’ Donegal in the final.
🗣️”Either way we’re going to see something special!” pic.twitter.com/5VWkm6iz6r
— Sky Sports GAA (@SkySportsGAA) December 16, 2020
Since then, the Westerners have suffered nothing but hardship against Dublin, losing to them in three finals in 2013, 2016 and 2017.
However, the Donegal man reckons their fortunes are set to change, but knows that Mayo have to bring their absolute best if they’re to beat Dublin.
“Dublin are human. For all the incredible football that they have played, they haven’t blown teams out of the water on All-Ireland final day, and there’s a reason for that – it’s the All-Ireland final.
“It’s a huge day on the Irish sporting calendar – the biggest. So they know the significance of this. And in some instances, you just want to go in there and win it, and want get home with the trophy.
“So that levels the field a wee bit. If they go in and beat Mayo by 10 points plus, we have a problem. We really do have a problem based on the fact that this [Mayo] team is well conditioned.
“But I’m going to stick with Mayo, just by virtue of the fact that I tipped them at the beginning of the year. I’m excited to see them for real in championship football against a team that’s going to bring it. I think they are going to bring it,” McGuinness told Sky Sports.
— The GAA (@officialgaa) December 17, 2020
‘All neutrals will be plugging for them’
Dublin have eased to a win in all four of their championship games this year, with Westmeath putting up the best fight so far, losing by 11 points.
The former Celtic FC youth manager knows that Dublin are more than capable of handing down a beating to Mayo, but stuck to his guns in tipping James Horan’s team.
“Mayo could be brilliant for 55, 60 minutes, and still get beaten by eight points. That’s the reality of the situation. You’ve got to be able to do it for 80 minutes and go all the way.
“I’m not going to jump off the horse now. I said it at the time when I tipped them that it was an outside chance. I still believe that. I still believe it’s an outside chance. But all neutrals will be plugging for them,” McGuinness said.