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Stephen Rochford Explains His Decision To Play Aidan O’Shea On Kieran Donaghy

Aidan O'Shea Dublin , Ireland - 20 August 2017; Kieran Donaghy of Kerry in action against Aidan O'Shea of Mayo during the GAA Football All-Ireland Senior Championship Semi-Final match between Kerry and Mayo at Croke Park in Dublin. (Photo By Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

Aidan O’Shea marking Kieran Donaghy dominated the discussion as Mayo and Kerry played out an enthralling draw…

Mayo and Kerry must do it all over again, after the two sides played out an absorbing clash in Croke Park this evening. The Connacht side went toe-to-toe with the Kingdom in what was undoubtedly the game of the summer up to this point.

The major talking point from Croke Park was Mayo’s decision to play Aidan O’Shea as a fullback on Kieran Donaghy.

Dublin , Ireland - 20 August 2017; Aidan O'Shea of Mayo and Peter Crowley of Kerry tussle after the half-time whistle during the GAA Football All-Ireland Senior Championship Semi-Final match between Kerry and Mayo at Croke Park in Dublin. (Photo By Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

While it came in for a huge amount of criticism before, during and after the game, Stephen Rochford to his guns when speaking after the match.

“Aidan has played fullback for us in a couple of instances. Earlier this year he played fullback for a while against Donegal on Michael Murphy, last year against Kildare on Kevin Feely. He’s one of our best tacklers.

“Obviously his presence against the physical and aerial threat that Kerry might bring in that area [helped us].

“We’ll look back on it and see if things worked.”

Rochford was not in a rush to reflect on how his tactics played out, as he begins to prepare for the replay.

“It’s a bit early to be too clinical in the analysis of it. We’ve to go back on the video to see the benefits we got out of it, what worked well, what needs to improve.

“We haven’t lost anything from it, but we haven’t gained anything from it either.

“We’re still in the competition.”

The two teams will return to Croke Park next Saturday afternoon at 3pm for the replay.

Author: The PA Team

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