That after the event, James Horan didn’t appear exasperated by the persistent line of questioning regarding the catastrophic opening 12 minutes of the second half for Mayo suggests he too believes their All-Ireland semi-final hopes foundered in that period.
Getting the match-ups right has gone a long way for Kerry and Mayo in recent years. We think of Aidan O’Mahony on Michael Murphy in the 2014 final, Lee Keegan on Enda Smith in the 2017 All-Ireland quarter-final replay and just last weekend Patrick Durcan tagging Ryan McHugh.
The group-deciding Super 8 encounter this evening in Castlebar has the potential to be explosive, a real old-style knockout championship game. There is no love lost between Mayo and Donegal dating back to the now infamous challenge game in 2012 and there are a lot of ifs, buts, and maybes making it a hard game to call.
Former Donegal footballer Brendan Devenney expects Declan Bonner’s men to dump Mayo out of the championship this Saturday but believes Donegal, along with Kerry and Tyrone, are playing for second place thereafter, as Dublin will not be toppled.