Once again, Mayo have become the subject of intense scrutiny following their defeat to Roscommon in the Connacht SFC.
Following the loss, leading pundit, Joe Brolly, chastised the Mayo team over what he described as “the disaster of all disasters” and that was only the tip of the iceberg as Brolly went on to personally attack some of the Mayo players.
When pushed on the criticism that Mayo have had thrown at them since Saturday, Andy Moran admitted that he no longer pays any attention to what the pundits have to say. The Mayo legend, who was introduced as a second-half substitute against Roscommon, conceded that he was more exposed to it in his youth but that it no longer resonates with him now.
“The more pundits make noise, the more they get heard. I suppose it’s different for me. I’m 35, I’ve probably seen a lot of it in the past. It might be different for a 23 or 24-year-old. But for me, it genuinely doesn’t make any difference,” said Moran.
"The nation's favourite tragic comedy unfolding again. It is more enthralling watching Mayo losing, than watching any other team winning, including the Dubs…" – Joe Brolly on Mayo's defeat to Roscommon pic.twitter.com/99L6ubF9G0
— The Sunday Game (@TheSundayGame) May 26, 2019
“Years ago I used to see it. I genuinely don’t see it anymore. I’d be in work on a Monday morning and someone will say, ‘Did you see this?’
“And you can’t really say anything about it. I actually don’t watch it (The Sunday Game). I’ve two kids, we’ve two businesses, we have a lot going on. So it’s just about getting on with it.
“I think the younger guys are way smarter than we were 10/15 years ago and they’re way more savvy in terms of what’s happening on social media and telly and stuff like that so I think they are probably a bit smarter than we were 10/15 years ago.
“It’s more supporters’ analysis if I’m being honest. But if I was mid-20s I might take it a bit different, you know?”
The Rossies recorded their first championship win over Mayo in MacHale since 1986 this past weekend thanks to goals from Cathal Cregg and Ultan Harney.
Moran paid respect to Anthony Cunningham’s side following their win citing their efficiency in attack as a key factor as well as those two early goals.
“When you look at football and you break it down and you actually look at what happened during the game, efficiency in front of goal was one of them, of course.
“But we got 17 points. You could say Roscommon were more efficient, but I think there’s a lot more to the structure of the game and that’s what we were looking at last night in training and we’ll just move on and learn from it.
“The simple fact about it is that they scored two goals to win the game. You have to be scoring goals in Championship football to win matches and we didn’t do that. That’s the big learning we will take from it. We didn’t create the goal-chances to go and win the game.”
For now, it’s back to the drawing board for Moran and his Mayo teammates as they stare down the barrel of another qualifier campaign.
It’s a long road back but Moran admits that the goal now is getting to the Super 8s, however, he’s fully aware of the pitfalls along the way.
“We trained last night and trained really well. Thank God we’ve four weeks. You just have to go away and give each game respect and just try to get yourself to the Super 8s.
“Once you get yourself to the Super 8s, you’re back to square one. The championship and the format has gotten a lot of stick over the weeks. For us, there are two separate championships. You play the Connacht championship and try your best to win it. Now you’re just in the All-Ireland series and we’ve two more games to get to where we need.
“If you look at it like that I think you’ll be fine. But as we showed two years ago, you have to treat every game with respect. We got brought to extra-time by Cork and Derry and we really had to try hard to win those games. We’ll have to do the same again and try to work our way back.”