National Forum

Is Rochford Calling The Shots

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A question I ask on the back of some of the selections / tactics made yesterday along with those used in games previously. Eamon Sweeney listed out some of these decisions:
'Let's Replace the Best Keeper in Ireland with his Dodgy Understudy'
'Taking Off Andy Moran and Colm Boyle No Matter How Well They're Playing'
'Quick, Move Lee Keegan Back to the Full-Back Line Before He Scores Any More'
'Aidan O'Shea: Full-Back of Mystery'

The one everyone is talking about today is O'Shea's selection at full back. To me that comes across as a decision someone made like they were playing this as a video game. He's tall and so is he, we'll stop the aerial threat that way. The thing was, Kerry only launched one long ball into him all afternoon that I can remember, which O'Shea won BTW, but Kerry were smart enough to play it in chest high and let O'shea defend, which he failed miserably at.
I don't blame O'Shea here, he's as much of a defender as Any Moran or Cillian O'Connor are midfielders. With Donaghy setting up scores and Kerry not looking to pump high ball in well before the end of the first half wasn't a swap made. Surely, then is the time to switch someone like Vaughan across to him and let Aidan move further upfield where he could ask questions of a very dodgy looking Kerry defense.
Was he that wary of how Mayo's full back line is of the high ball even though the opposition weren't playing that well? Was he thinking, if he did move O'Shea off him that Kerry would start kicking high balls in and all hell would break loose?

keithlemon (Australia) - 21/08/2017 10:17:40    2035860

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I cant understand some off his substitute decisions either. Was Colm Boyle injured yesterday? Also Taking off Andy Moran vs Galway after he kicked a point. is he trying to be too clever?

mon (Galway) - 21/08/2017 10:36:30    2035870

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Stephen Rochford is an All Ireland Winning manager. To say he's not calling the shots is very odd.

He makes some very brave calls, some not necessarily paying off but Mayo are still in the AI Series - arguably they should be in the final today.

GetOverTheBar (Tyrone) - 21/08/2017 10:47:09    2035877

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Replying To GetOverTheBar:  "Stephen Rochford is an All Ireland Winning manager. To say he's not calling the shots is very odd.

He makes some very brave calls, some not necessarily paying off but Mayo are still in the AI Series - arguably they should be in the final today."
Well you only have to go back to the goalkeeper decision in the All Ireland final replay last year. Did he make that decision or was that forced on him by the players?

keithlemon (Australia) - 21/08/2017 11:06:45    2035884

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O'Mahony, Maughan, Moran, Horan, Connelly/Holmes. They basically tried the same gungho football, not so much thought for having a more organised team defence, rather than just 6 defenders. We were predictable and in a lit of cases his clubmen Nallen and McDonald got us through games.

Now, even if our defence isn't always good, a more team based defence. 1 or 2 sweepers, high pressing, huge work rate. I think sometimes he over-analyzes games. Boyle being subbed early looks like it's down to GPS data rather than how he's performing. I'd drop a forward the next day to start Paddy Durcan. I don't think Stephen Coen is good enough for that level. He has to play Aidan where Aidan plays best. But I know nothing about coaching or football management, it looks easy from the stand or the armchair.

Who knows what he'll do the next day. Some saying he's the worst of the four remaining managers. He's only in the job for two years. Rochford has balls and he'll stand by his decisions even if they are bad ones. For that reason alone I have to admire the man.

GreenandRed (Mayo) - 21/08/2017 11:20:52    2035897

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Why do people complain about Boyle coming off all the time
You can clearly see hes tired don't need GPS
If you have a strong bench, taking players off shouldn't be an issue

Scarabin (Dublin) - 21/08/2017 11:29:44    2035905

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Replying To GreenandRed:  "link

O'Mahony, Maughan, Moran, Horan, Connelly/Holmes. They basically tried the same gungho football, not so much thought for having a more organised team defence, rather than just 6 defenders. We were predictable and in a lit of cases his clubmen Nallen and McDonald got us through games.

Now, even if our defence isn't always good, a more team based defence. 1 or 2 sweepers, high pressing, huge work rate. I think sometimes he over-analyzes games. Boyle being subbed early looks like it's down to GPS data rather than how he's performing. I'd drop a forward the next day to start Paddy Durcan. I don't think Stephen Coen is good enough for that level. He has to play Aidan where Aidan plays best. But I know nothing about coaching or football management, it looks easy from the stand or the armchair.

Who knows what he'll do the next day. Some saying he's the worst of the four remaining managers. He's only in the job for two years. Rochford has balls and he'll stand by his decisions even if they are bad ones. For that reason alone I have to admire the man."
That's fair enough GnR
I do think there is a fine line though between making a gutsy decision and sticking to it than making a bad decision in the hope that it works out eventually
Mayo's resilience is their strongest trait and I think that came before Rochford.
Like you say, what do we know about football management and coaching but even from the comfort of your couch you'd have to wonder why he persisted with Aidan O'Shea at full back

At the same time, Rochford has tried it now and has a better idea of how that tactic works

keithlemon (Australia) - 21/08/2017 11:34:42    2035909

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Damned if he does damned if he doesn't. If you look at all of his decisions in isolation:

*Change of keeps. Logic was Clarkes poor kick outs (as was seen yesterday). To be fair to Rochford no one would have predicted Henelly dropping a ball like he did. He made the call for the right reason. Didn't work.
*AOS on KD. Robbing Peter to pay Paul. Probably wouldn't have done it myself and AOS got roasted a bit but it took out the long ball option and gave the rest of the team the confidence to push on. Brave call, nearly worked.
*Colm Boyle (or whoever gets subbed). Traditionally in GAA u wait until someone is playing bad. Rochford seems to try and make the change in advance of performance dipping. It is a brave and mature way to operate because it is very hard to be proved right. It is logical - he has data that shows that a player dips after x amount of miles so he takes him off just before the dip and replaces him with a fresh player. When u have a quality replacement like Durcan in Boyles case it makes the decision easier. Also Boyle did a lot of hard running yesterday, Do u wait until he gets exposed?

It pains me to say it but Mayo are improving as the year goes on.

Mayonman (Galway) - 21/08/2017 11:35:54    2035910

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Replying To Scarabin:  "Why do people complain about Boyle coming off all the time
You can clearly see hes tired don't need GPS
If you have a strong bench, taking players off shouldn't be an issue"
It looks like he's still playing well at times and we should leave him on even if he's tiring. But managers know what they're at, we're just keyboard drivers. Was overdue to bring Paddy Durcan in though so I'm delighted they did.

GreenandRed (Mayo) - 21/08/2017 11:43:24    2035916

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David Clark showed in the first half exactly why he was dropped for the all Ireland final replay last year his distribution is shockingly poor although he's a good shot stopper in fairness to him.

Putting O'Shea on Donaghy ensured Donaghy wasn't an aerial threat and turned Donaghy into just a normal decent full forward, you put Cafferky on him and I'd say Kerry would have sent in numerous high balls which Donaghy almost certainly would have done something with, with O'Shea on him they only kicked one long ball in all day and O'Shea dealt with it well.

Rochford can't really win. He does the same old thing with Cafferkey on Donaghy and he'll get slaughtered for trying the same thing and failing once again, he does something different and he still gets ridiculous criticism from people.

Colm Boyle was quite clearly absoulutely exhausted yesterday (and tends to be in most games) so that's why he was taken off.

uibhfhaili1986 (Offaly) - 21/08/2017 11:50:40    2035923

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Replying To keithlemon:  "Well you only have to go back to the goalkeeper decision in the All Ireland final replay last year. Did he make that decision or was that forced on him by the players?"
I'd bet my money on that being Rochford's decision, to me I don't see the problem - as a previous poster said he's got the balls to back his own decisions and that alone gets him my respect too. Nobody really knows the full story on that one.

I think Rochford would walk if any of that carry on was really going on. Mayo are just the easy media target in my opinion - slow week? Sure Mayo will fill up that page.

GetOverTheBar (Tyrone) - 21/08/2017 11:50:55    2035924

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I don't blame O'Shea here, he's as much of a defender as Any Moran or Cillian O'Connor are midfielders. With Donaghy setting up scores and Kerry not looking to pump high ball in well before the end of the first half wasn't a swap made. Surely, then is the time to switch someone like Vaughan across to him and let Aidan move further upfield where he could ask questions of a very dodgy looking Kerry defense.

the big weakness about the above is that kerry see aos moving up and off donaghy. then immediately they launch in missiles on top of vaughan..i wonder what will happen next!?!?

kavvie (Clare) - 21/08/2017 11:55:11    2035928

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Replying To keithlemon:  "A question I ask on the back of some of the selections / tactics made yesterday along with those used in games previously. Eamon Sweeney listed out some of these decisions:
'Let's Replace the Best Keeper in Ireland with his Dodgy Understudy'
'Taking Off Andy Moran and Colm Boyle No Matter How Well They're Playing'
'Quick, Move Lee Keegan Back to the Full-Back Line Before He Scores Any More'
'Aidan O'Shea: Full-Back of Mystery'

The one everyone is talking about today is O'Shea's selection at full back. To me that comes across as a decision someone made like they were playing this as a video game. He's tall and so is he, we'll stop the aerial threat that way. The thing was, Kerry only launched one long ball into him all afternoon that I can remember, which O'Shea won BTW, but Kerry were smart enough to play it in chest high and let O'shea defend, which he failed miserably at.
I don't blame O'Shea here, he's as much of a defender as Any Moran or Cillian O'Connor are midfielders. With Donaghy setting up scores and Kerry not looking to pump high ball in well before the end of the first half wasn't a swap made. Surely, then is the time to switch someone like Vaughan across to him and let Aidan move further upfield where he could ask questions of a very dodgy looking Kerry defense.
Was he that wary of how Mayo's full back line is of the high ball even though the opposition weren't playing that well? Was he thinking, if he did move O'Shea off him that Kerry would start kicking high balls in and all hell would break loose?"
Andy Moran and cillian O'Connor in midfield? Don't be giving rochford ideas will you :-)

KingdomBoy1 (Kerry) - 21/08/2017 12:00:15    2035935

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Replying To GreenandRed:  "link

O'Mahony, Maughan, Moran, Horan, Connelly/Holmes. They basically tried the same gungho football, not so much thought for having a more organised team defence, rather than just 6 defenders. We were predictable and in a lit of cases his clubmen Nallen and McDonald got us through games.

Now, even if our defence isn't always good, a more team based defence. 1 or 2 sweepers, high pressing, huge work rate. I think sometimes he over-analyzes games. Boyle being subbed early looks like it's down to GPS data rather than how he's performing. I'd drop a forward the next day to start Paddy Durcan. I don't think Stephen Coen is good enough for that level. He has to play Aidan where Aidan plays best. But I know nothing about coaching or football management, it looks easy from the stand or the armchair.

Who knows what he'll do the next day. Some saying he's the worst of the four remaining managers. He's only in the job for two years. Rochford has balls and he'll stand by his decisions even if they are bad ones. For that reason alone I have to admire the man."
That article you have linked there is an absolute disgrace and who ever the journalist is that wrote it should be ashamed of himself. James Horan and Connelly/Holmes management were criticized by the likes of him and Joe Brolly for not setting up to protect there defence and for going with the same personnel all the time like Cafferkey on Donaghy and not doing anything to change it. Rochford makes the brave and in my opinion right decision to give Mayo the best chance of winning the game and still gets slaughtered for it. If he had set up like Horan did in 2014 with no protection for full back line and had Keegan, Boyle and Higgins bombing forward all day and Donaghy causing havoc inside Mayo would have been beaten yesterday no question. He is doing a brilliant job with a team that has been through a lot in the last seven years and he has still managed to get them into the All Ireland Final last year and a kick off a ball away from winning it after a run through the qualifiers and again this year through the qualifiers and one game away from an all Ireland final after another draw! If other counties had half the runs mayo have had the past two years they would be delighted!

BigJoe14 (Meath) - 21/08/2017 12:32:15    2035969

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He has a Mayo team that's a long time on the road going very well.He must deserve credit for that.

endgame (Roscommon) - 21/08/2017 12:42:07    2035972

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Have to say Mayo got it right yesterday with O'Shea , the amount of long balls that were not tried by Kerry yesterday because he was there is forgotten about. he is the most mobile of all there midfielders so he was the #1 choice. as for the comment on rochord not being in control nobody can say that O'Shea put his hand up to play there he did as he was told , and if mayo won by a point Brolly and the likes would be talking about the O'Shea master stroke.

I hope Mayo do it in the replay.

ulsterrules (Donegal) - 21/08/2017 13:57:52    2036020

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Rochford is doing a good job and of course he's in charge.
He's the one making decision to sub players isn't he.

catch22 (USA) - 21/08/2017 14:03:47    2036024

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i think it would be more important from a mayo perspective to get Lee Keegan at full tilt next week. if Lee had been at his best yesterday Mayo would have won imo. Colm Boyle coming off does seem like an odd move however there were reasons and in fairness he was replaced with another outstanding player who took nothing from the teams performance. I do think however that Mayo should consider bringing Boyle back on with 5 minutes to go after hes refueled and rested. People might say whats the point or where do you put him etc but he'll give it hell for those last 10 minutes or so and poor rochford could finally get credit for a master stroke for a change

theweanling (Cavan) - 21/08/2017 14:34:54    2036039

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You would think Vaughan would be the man to mark Donaghy. Brolly said Mayo needed to 'go to war on Donaghy' - well, moving O'Shea onto him would seem to be answering that call. Rochfort & Fitzmaurice are both overthinking the tactics, in my opinion. Robbing Peter to pay Paul instead of letting players play their more natural style. They'll both probably go back to basics for the replay.

keeper7 (Longford) - 21/08/2017 14:53:39    2036051

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Replying To Scarabin:  "Why do people complain about Boyle coming off all the time
You can clearly see hes tired don't need GPS
If you have a strong bench, taking players off shouldn't be an issue"
It's obviously planned, in agreement with Boyle, that he give it everything for fifty or so minutes and that he will then be replaced. It seems sensible as he would have to 'save' himself if he was to try to see out 75 or 80 minutes. It allows him to really take the game to the opposition and have a strong influence on the procedings knowing that when he tires he will be called ashore.

neverright (Roscommon) - 21/08/2017 15:00:10    2036053

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