National Forum

2019 NFL Division 2 final

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Replying To himachechy:  "The potential issue for Meath is that, as you point out, they are able to get up for the bigger games against bigger teams, but over the last few years they've slipped up in games against 'lesser' teams, or in games they would be expected to win.

They seems to have sorted that problem out in the league this year, but will need to show it now in Championship. A loss in Leinster against anyone other than Dublin would be a step backwards. They could definitely make the super 8's, but might require a kind draw in the backdoor at some point"
Ur right. That has been the problem. Losing to teams like Cork and Tippearey in the last few years. This year we are beating teams like Cork and Tipp as well as playing well v stronger teams. But as u said we need to that in championship. There r tricky games in leinster. Games we have lost in recent years. Carlow will be tricky and Westmeath also. But I have feeling it cud Meath v Laois semi final. Laois have a built up a bit steam in last 2 years winning 2 promotion and a pile of games. Its a game they wud always be dangerous in as they r a sort of bogey team for us. If we play like we did v Longford last year we will lose to Laois Westmeath and Carlow. But since that game there has been serious improvement. But I would be worried of a bad loss is in the team in this years championship. Super 8 wud be great but cud we face the same defeats as Roscommon. The old system was better for upcoming teams. 1 quater final 1 bad defeat it was still a good year. Now 3 games in 3 weeks v division 1 teams it is very tough for upcoming promoted div 2 team.

Next spring is so important. If we cud stay up ur gurateed two springs of div 1 football which would be so beneficial for 2020 and 2021 championship. I think next year we will be stronger. But this year we are still improving but still a good distance from being super 8 team yet. Great league campaign and talent to come thru from underage teams. But we have done the easy part in going from 16th to 9th in 10 months. The hard part is go from 9th to 6th or 7th and stay there. Something kildare Cavan and Roscommon failed to do. Only Galway have broke into top 8 and stayed there in recent years. I think we can do it. But time will tell.
Again congratulations to Donegal. A seriously quality football team. And Murphy is an all.time great. I fully expect Donegal to be All Ireland contenders in the coming years and I personally believe this Donegal team will win Sam in 2022 2023 2024. Exciting times ahead for Donegal.

Furlong1949 (Meath) - Posts: 815 - 01/04/2019 14:31:11    2176992

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Replying To gotmilk:  "RD by any chance do you have a moustache, glasses and sitting in the lower hogan on saturday?"
No, I barely have hair on my head these days never mind a mustache:)

royaldunne (Meath) - Posts: 15753 - 01/04/2019 14:54:20    2177000

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Good game. Congrats to Donegal They were deserved winners. Meath were good for 50 mins and particularly in the first half but fizzled out towards the end and Donegal took control. Murphy is a class act and was the difference in the end. Optimistic for the future. Good luck to Donegal for the summer!

Meath10 (Meath) - Posts: 83 - 01/04/2019 16:02:32    2177023

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Replying To royaldunne:  "No, I barely have hair on my head these days never mind a mustache:)"
No worries, there was a passionate meath fan down in the lower hogan on saturday where i was. Thought he was gonna go boxing with a Donegal fan in front of me.

gotmilk (Fermanagh) - Posts: 4967 - 01/04/2019 16:49:58    2177039

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Replying To gotmilk:  "No worries, there was a passionate meath fan down in the lower hogan on saturday where i was. Thought he was gonna go boxing with a Donegal fan in front of me."
Hahaha. There's a few of us like that, I'm not the only one :). Although while I would be passionate, I try to respect the opposing supporters viewpoint, even if I never agree with it.

royaldunne (Meath) - Posts: 15753 - 01/04/2019 18:32:15    2177059

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Replying To Jack_Goff:  "Congrats to Donegal. I would have heavily fancied Tyrone to retain Ulster but it won't be so simple anymore. Donegal put in a powerful performance for 3/4's of the game that shows why they deserve to be a division 1 side.

You can see why I wanted Fermanagh in the final. Our implosion to a weakened Donegal team early in the league had big implications. Not only would we have probably beaten Fermanagh in the final but next year we probably would have gotten 2 points off them in the league. Donegal next year that will be very hard.

Still delighted to go up all the same. One goal is achieved and it was massive. Even if relegated next year the Div 1 experience will make it easier to get back to Div 1 again.

The next goal is a Leinster final. Ofally up next. The winner plays Carlow and the winner of that vs Westmeath or Laois. So one of those teams will be beaten by Dublin in the Leinster final and be one game away from the super 8's. Bring it on."
Meath are good enough to beat Dublin in 2019, I seen enough on Saturday to realize they are no flash in the pan, this is a serious Meath outfit who are on an upward trend. The gap between Dublin and the others has tightened, and considering Dublin haven't exactly played at full tilt in the Leinster Championship in recent years, I think Meath could take them by serious surprise.

Tyrone and possibly Monaghan probably have a slight edge on us at the moment, in terms of physicality and experience, but in terms of raw talent, I think we are starting to rise upwards again and I'm confident we can beat either team. The new players won't all click in Championship this year, it takes time, but they seem to be going in the right direction.

There is no tomorrow in football, teams like Meath and Donegal just need to go full tilt this summer, with no fear and nothing to lose.

Commodore (Donegal) - Posts: 479 - 01/04/2019 21:17:10    2177100

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Meath are good enough to beat Dublin in 2019, I seen enough on Saturday to realize they are no flash in the pan, this is a serious Meath outfit who are on an upward trend. The gap between Dublin and the others has tightened, and considering Dublin haven't exactly played at full tilt in the Leinster Championship in recent years, I think Meath could take them by serious surprise.

Much and all as I would love to see it I can't see Meath troubling Dublin. Once Donegal got moving on Sat evening they outscored Meath 1-16 to 0-9 & this was a Donegal team without Patrick McBrearty.

Yes, Meath are on an upward trajectory but they have a long way to go to match Dublin

MuckrossHead (Donegal) - Posts: 4865 - 01/04/2019 21:44:56    2177111

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Replying To Commodore:  "Meath are good enough to beat Dublin in 2019, I seen enough on Saturday to realize they are no flash in the pan, this is a serious Meath outfit who are on an upward trend. The gap between Dublin and the others has tightened, and considering Dublin haven't exactly played at full tilt in the Leinster Championship in recent years, I think Meath could take them by serious surprise.

Tyrone and possibly Monaghan probably have a slight edge on us at the moment, in terms of physicality and experience, but in terms of raw talent, I think we are starting to rise upwards again and I'm confident we can beat either team. The new players won't all click in Championship this year, it takes time, but they seem to be going in the right direction.

There is no tomorrow in football, teams like Meath and Donegal just need to go full tilt this summer, with no fear and nothing to lose."
I don't think they can beat Dublin personally this year myself. However I do agree that the potential is there. Getting to a Leinster final is imperative but full focus will be required as well as a recharge of the batteries if their league training has been as intense as rumoured. Meath need to build up their squad depth and maybe unearth a couple more young players from this year's U-20 group. That and maybe the return of 1 or 2 players Furlong alluded to will bring on their development.

panamasam (Australia) - Posts: 1988 - 02/04/2019 11:50:18    2177225

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Replying To MuckrossHead:  "Meath are good enough to beat Dublin in 2019, I seen enough on Saturday to realize they are no flash in the pan, this is a serious Meath outfit who are on an upward trend. The gap between Dublin and the others has tightened, and considering Dublin haven't exactly played at full tilt in the Leinster Championship in recent years, I think Meath could take them by serious surprise.

Much and all as I would love to see it I can't see Meath troubling Dublin. Once Donegal got moving on Sat evening they outscored Meath 1-16 to 0-9 & this was a Donegal team without Patrick McBrearty.

Yes, Meath are on an upward trajectory but they have a long way to go to match Dublin"
I disagree here, tactics made a huge difference last Saturday, we dominated possession in the 2nd half and starved the Meath forwards of chances they so willingly put away in the first half. We were forced to make subs to address the areas we exposed in early on, I think they are a solid outfit.

Dublin are excellent, but the gap has closed significantly, and if they continue to play their Leinster Championship matches at the casual pace of recent seasons, I could see Meath put them on the back foot, and Dublin maybe not recovering in time.

As unearthing one or two new players from the U20's, I say just prepare the squad you have that bit better and give it a lash this year.

Commodore (Donegal) - Posts: 479 - 02/04/2019 12:52:06    2177244

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Replying To Furlong1949:  "Ur right. That has been the problem. Losing to teams like Cork and Tippearey in the last few years. This year we are beating teams like Cork and Tipp as well as playing well v stronger teams. But as u said we need to that in championship. There r tricky games in leinster. Games we have lost in recent years. Carlow will be tricky and Westmeath also. But I have feeling it cud Meath v Laois semi final. Laois have a built up a bit steam in last 2 years winning 2 promotion and a pile of games. Its a game they wud always be dangerous in as they r a sort of bogey team for us. If we play like we did v Longford last year we will lose to Laois Westmeath and Carlow. But since that game there has been serious improvement. But I would be worried of a bad loss is in the team in this years championship. Super 8 wud be great but cud we face the same defeats as Roscommon. The old system was better for upcoming teams. 1 quater final 1 bad defeat it was still a good year. Now 3 games in 3 weeks v division 1 teams it is very tough for upcoming promoted div 2 team.

Next spring is so important. If we cud stay up ur gurateed two springs of div 1 football which would be so beneficial for 2020 and 2021 championship. I think next year we will be stronger. But this year we are still improving but still a good distance from being super 8 team yet. Great league campaign and talent to come thru from underage teams. But we have done the easy part in going from 16th to 9th in 10 months. The hard part is go from 9th to 6th or 7th and stay there. Something kildare Cavan and Roscommon failed to do. Only Galway have broke into top 8 and stayed there in recent years. I think we can do it. But time will tell.
Again congratulations to Donegal. A seriously quality football team. And Murphy is an all.time great. I fully expect Donegal to be All Ireland contenders in the coming years and I personally believe this Donegal team will win Sam in 2022 2023 2024. Exciting times ahead for Donegal."
I love when people come up with these lazy comments like "losing to the likes of Cork and Tipp". I know its not having a dig at either county and probably said without much thought but where is this attitude coming from. What have Meath done at senior or underage in the last 10 years that has surpassed what Tipp have done in the same time frame?

tipp11 (Tipperary) - Posts: 339 - 02/04/2019 12:55:08    2177246

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Replying To Commodore:  "
Replying To MuckrossHead:  "Meath are good enough to beat Dublin in 2019, I seen enough on Saturday to realize they are no flash in the pan, this is a serious Meath outfit who are on an upward trend. The gap between Dublin and the others has tightened, and considering Dublin haven't exactly played at full tilt in the Leinster Championship in recent years, I think Meath could take them by serious surprise.

Much and all as I would love to see it I can't see Meath troubling Dublin. Once Donegal got moving on Sat evening they outscored Meath 1-16 to 0-9 & this was a Donegal team without Patrick McBrearty.

Yes, Meath are on an upward trajectory but they have a long way to go to match Dublin"
I disagree here, tactics made a huge difference last Saturday, we dominated possession in the 2nd half and starved the Meath forwards of chances they so willingly put away in the first half. We were forced to make subs to address the areas we exposed in early on, I think they are a solid outfit.

Dublin are excellent, but the gap has closed significantly, and if they continue to play their Leinster Championship matches at the casual pace of recent seasons, I could see Meath put them on the back foot, and Dublin maybe not recovering in time.

As unearthing one or two new players from the U20's, I say just prepare the squad you have that bit better and give it a lash this year."
Hope you right

royaldunne (Meath) - Posts: 15753 - 02/04/2019 16:41:28    2177326

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Replying To tipp11:  "I love when people come up with these lazy comments like "losing to the likes of Cork and Tipp". I know its not having a dig at either county and probably said without much thought but where is this attitude coming from. What have Meath done at senior or underage in the last 10 years that has surpassed what Tipp have done in the same time frame?"
Apologies for my comments. I didnt explain myself at all well there. U have every right to feel aggrevied. When I read back what I said, I explained myself really badly.

Losing to Counties likes of Tipp and Cork , I meant was losing to counties like Meath Kildare Armagh Clare Tipp Armagh Cavan Roscommon Fermanagh laois. Basically counties like Meath. losing to div 2 counties. There is a pile of good teams outside top 6 or 7 teams eg Dublin Kerry Mayo Donegal Monaghan Galway Tyrone. They are the top teams. Then is a group of teams of fairly the same level , all have potential all have failed to break into top 8 teams. These counties are trying hard and all have lots of potential. These counties are Meath kildare Tippearey Cork Roscommon Cavan Fermanagh Armagh Clare. I meant in 2018 the two best teams we played the only counties which reached super 8 was Tyrone and Roscommon, we played really well.against and sud have won both games. These counties are stronger then us , theyre teams were better then us last year.

When we played teams in division 2 similar to ourselves we played poorly. We played well v division 1 teams and poorly v division 2 teams. That is inconsistency. But also it must be said Cavan Longford and Tippearey were better then us last year and we werent good enough to beat them. But yet when we played All Ireland finalist only for point in 6th min of injury time we wud have beaten them. So that's what I meant.

Meath kildare Tippearey Cavan Roscommon Armagh Fermanagh Clare Laois Cork are all around the same level. They r all trying to break into top 8. The only county to break into top 8 from this group in recent year's and stay in div 1 is Galway. Kildare Roscommon and Cavan have tried in the league and Tippearey tried in championship in that brillant run in 2016. But all failed to stay up in top 8. Meath will try next year. And there is no gurantee we will stay in top 8. We cud easily get relegated next year also , we will be favourites to do so. So I hope that explains things.

Apologies again. And just to answer what Meath have done better then Tipperary this decade. Nothing , if anything we have tryed to copy ur underage sucess. The minor Tipp All Ireland winners and under 21 All Ireland finalist. We have not had sucess like that. And I know we have tryed to copy ur sucess at underage . Ur sucess at underage was a brillant achievement. While u reached an All Ireland semi final in 2016, we last did in 2009. U have better full forward line then us and most teams in the country. And u gave us a football lesson in Thurles last year.

I know u guys went down this year. But the team of 2016 is still young and maybe a new voice in the dressing room is what could help. Kearins has done a good job. But a new voice might do the trick. Because when we played u guys last year and in 2016 when u reached last 4 , Tipperary looked like a classy top class quality gaelic football team. Some of the football Tipp played in q final v Galway was really swashbuckling stuff.

I hope that clarifies things. Sorry again for clumsily badly phrased comments in my original message.

Furlong1949 (Meath) - Posts: 815 - 03/04/2019 07:02:14    2177429

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Congrats to Donegal the better team won over the 70 mins. Donegal gave us a less on how to close out a game. Hopefully we will learn from it. We where never going to beat Donegal by 7 or 8 points so that lead was kinda false Donegal where always going to come back into so no surprise there. Having said that a lot people saying Donegal just calmly beat Meath in the second half while true might be a bit sloppy.
We missed 3 clear goal chances (one been the square ball ) if one or maybe 2 went would Meath have won ? quiet possibly it didn't happen so we need to be more cynical. Also a massive loss for so was Bryan Mc Mahon he scored 2 nice points and set up the goal for Newman which was disallowed goal he was flying. So Donegal Management would have been delighted to come off just before half time. We missed his play making ability and pace especially second half. Froced us to use Reilly earlier than we would have liked. I said at the end of the first half whatever happens now we have more than held our own with a top team in Croke Park so that's refreshing.

bobkarlgees (Meath) - Posts: 1105 - 03/04/2019 09:41:51    2177439

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Replying To panamasam:  "I don't think they can beat Dublin personally this year myself. However I do agree that the potential is there. Getting to a Leinster final is imperative but full focus will be required as well as a recharge of the batteries if their league training has been as intense as rumoured. Meath need to build up their squad depth and maybe unearth a couple more young players from this year's U-20 group. That and maybe the return of 1 or 2 players Furlong alluded to will bring on their development."
Meath will be burned out come the summer, their just fitter than everyone else this time of year but because of the draw they can still be optimistic in terms of making the super 8's but they'll be hammered if they do.

Would love to see Meath get back to the top table but I just don't see it, they don't have enough good players.

There's a clear top 7 at the moment and can only see Monaghan going backwards as its difficult to keep replacing their older players and have huge problems at midfield.

JDF (Galway) - Posts: 302 - 03/04/2019 10:03:56    2177445

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Replying To Furlong1949:  "Apologies for my comments. I didnt explain myself at all well there. U have every right to feel aggrevied. When I read back what I said, I explained myself really badly.

Losing to Counties likes of Tipp and Cork , I meant was losing to counties like Meath Kildare Armagh Clare Tipp Armagh Cavan Roscommon Fermanagh laois. Basically counties like Meath. losing to div 2 counties. There is a pile of good teams outside top 6 or 7 teams eg Dublin Kerry Mayo Donegal Monaghan Galway Tyrone. They are the top teams. Then is a group of teams of fairly the same level , all have potential all have failed to break into top 8 teams. These counties are trying hard and all have lots of potential. These counties are Meath kildare Tippearey Cork Roscommon Cavan Fermanagh Armagh Clare. I meant in 2018 the two best teams we played the only counties which reached super 8 was Tyrone and Roscommon, we played really well.against and sud have won both games. These counties are stronger then us , theyre teams were better then us last year.

When we played teams in division 2 similar to ourselves we played poorly. We played well v division 1 teams and poorly v division 2 teams. That is inconsistency. But also it must be said Cavan Longford and Tippearey were better then us last year and we werent good enough to beat them. But yet when we played All Ireland finalist only for point in 6th min of injury time we wud have beaten them. So that's what I meant.

Meath kildare Tippearey Cavan Roscommon Armagh Fermanagh Clare Laois Cork are all around the same level. They r all trying to break into top 8. The only county to break into top 8 from this group in recent year's and stay in div 1 is Galway. Kildare Roscommon and Cavan have tried in the league and Tippearey tried in championship in that brillant run in 2016. But all failed to stay up in top 8. Meath will try next year. And there is no gurantee we will stay in top 8. We cud easily get relegated next year also , we will be favourites to do so. So I hope that explains things.

Apologies again. And just to answer what Meath have done better then Tipperary this decade. Nothing , if anything we have tryed to copy ur underage sucess. The minor Tipp All Ireland winners and under 21 All Ireland finalist. We have not had sucess like that. And I know we have tryed to copy ur sucess at underage . Ur sucess at underage was a brillant achievement. While u reached an All Ireland semi final in 2016, we last did in 2009. U have better full forward line then us and most teams in the country. And u gave us a football lesson in Thurles last year.

I know u guys went down this year. But the team of 2016 is still young and maybe a new voice in the dressing room is what could help. Kearins has done a good job. But a new voice might do the trick. Because when we played u guys last year and in 2016 when u reached last 4 , Tipperary looked like a classy top class quality gaelic football team. Some of the football Tipp played in q final v Galway was really swashbuckling stuff.

I hope that clarifies things. Sorry again for clumsily badly phrased comments in my original message."
As I said I didnt think you ment it in a bad way but it something that gets branded about quiet a bit. We havent performed yet for a full 70 mins bar against galway in 16 against a top team but to my memory since 2012 our only losses in the championship have come against Kerry, Cork, Galway, Tyrone, Mayo, Down (2012) and armagh. We have shipped some big losses against kerry, cork last year and tyrone but apart from that all our defeats have been very competitive defeats and in the main against teams of a good standard. We have generally beaten the teams in and around our level. Its just a gripe of mine when it does get thrown about by teams who would are in truth in and around our level using terms such as "only tipperary", "the likes of tipps" etc.

Wasnt having a cut at you either btw and congrats on promotion

tipp11 (Tipperary) - Posts: 339 - 03/04/2019 11:14:08    2177459

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Replying To JDF:  "Meath will be burned out come the summer, their just fitter than everyone else this time of year but because of the draw they can still be optimistic in terms of making the super 8's but they'll be hammered if they do.

Would love to see Meath get back to the top table but I just don't see it, they don't have enough good players.

There's a clear top 7 at the moment and can only see Monaghan going backwards as its difficult to keep replacing their older players and have huge problems at midfield."
Ya I would agree regarding the dangers of burnout. They are going in the right direction but definitely need more players. They have decent under 20 team according to Meath posters here and u never know some of them could break through. Again you are correct on a gap forming. I would never write off Monaghan and they do seem to be producing decent underage sides so the potential to replenish is there.

panamasam (Australia) - Posts: 1988 - 03/04/2019 12:13:41    2177469

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Replying To tipp11:  "As I said I didnt think you ment it in a bad way but it something that gets branded about quiet a bit. We havent performed yet for a full 70 mins bar against galway in 16 against a top team but to my memory since 2012 our only losses in the championship have come against Kerry, Cork, Galway, Tyrone, Mayo, Down (2012) and armagh. We have shipped some big losses against kerry, cork last year and tyrone but apart from that all our defeats have been very competitive defeats and in the main against teams of a good standard. We have generally beaten the teams in and around our level. Its just a gripe of mine when it does get thrown about by teams who would are in truth in and around our level using terms such as "only tipperary", "the likes of tipps" etc.

Wasnt having a cut at you either btw and congrats on promotion"
No problem. As I said my comments were very clumisly phrased . I have tendency to ramble on and in detail and that leads to comments like the above. I dont believe in degrading anyones county. Every gaa county has unique and great traits. But there is snobbery in gaa world. The only county I degrade is Dublin and u cannot degrade those boyos enough. ( Actually I dont believe that eitheir we have great sneeky adminiration in Meath for the great current Dublin but as along as they dont know that )

Tipperary is one our great gaa counties , all the great hurlers but Tipp also has a great tradition of football. The first Tipp player remeber for me was Peter Lambert an excellent player , but for me it was Declan Browne. He was such a brillant talent he was like a Tippearey Peter Cavanan.

Of course the excellent minor team which beat one best Dublin minor teams and under 21 Tipp All Ireland finalist, another excellent team.
Everyone in Meath was highly impressed with Tipp last year they looked so good. Kearins has done excellent job. Like he did with Limerick. He is think 4 years in the job. If I was a young ambitious inter county if I could pick one job it wud be Tipp. Strong midfield good attacking wing backs but quality forwards. Tipp have one best full forward lines in the country and one of best full forwards in Quilvan.

This Tippearey team have shown glimpses what they can do. And are team that will peak in next few years. I can see Tipp getting promoted back to div 2 and wouldnt be surprised to see Tipp in div 1. , super 8 and pushing for Munster title in next few years. In 2016 we saw the potential. Those players from minors and under 21 sucessful team are still young enough to make an impact.
Again apologies for my comments they were very badly phrased.

Furlong1949 (Meath) - Posts: 815 - 03/04/2019 15:06:53    2177509

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Replying To JDF:  "Meath will be burned out come the summer, their just fitter than everyone else this time of year but because of the draw they can still be optimistic in terms of making the super 8's but they'll be hammered if they do.

Would love to see Meath get back to the top table but I just don't see it, they don't have enough good players.

There's a clear top 7 at the moment and can only see Monaghan going backwards as its difficult to keep replacing their older players and have huge problems at midfield."
I agree with some of ur points.

Regards fitness I dont think that is the reason for Meaths improvement . Here is the evidence. In 2017 we were super fit and the fittest team in div 2 , yet we had a poor season. In 2018 we were super fit and probaly fittest team in div 2 yet we were nearly relegated and had a poor season. How do we know this. Well in 90% of games in 2017 2018 Meath finished games strongly. In 2017 Meath finished strongly v Down Clare Fermanagh Galway Louth Sligo and Donegal. In 2018 Meath finished strongly v Down Clare Roscommon Louth and Tyrone. The level of performance was poor in 2017 2018 but not the fitness in 2017 2018.

So here are the reasons for Meaths improvement. It was always going to take McEntee three year to improve things ( the same as Boylan Dwyer and Kevin Walsh ) , the introduction of Nally as a coach. a group players starting to peak as footballers eg McEntee Sullivan , the introduction of young under 21 talent first since 2012 who have made instant impact and the moving of James McEntee to wing back and moving of Donal keoghan to centre back r all reasons why Meath improved this spring.

Meath are actually following the same path as Galway and hopefully they do that. Kevin Walsh faced the same situation to McEntee when he took over. Both McEntee and Walsh took over counties with sucess in the past but both were in the doldrums since 2001. In his first two year under Walsh Galway were poor. In McEntees first two years Meath were poor. In Walshs third year Galway were promoted to div 1 . In McEntees 3 rd year Meath were promoted. In Walshs third year Galway reached quater final / super 8 and were poor v Kerry I think. If there was a super 8 that year Galway wud have been hammered. So I have feeling if Meath reached the super 8 this year they could have similar performances as Galway v kerry in 2017 q finals and Roscommon last year. I dont think Meath wud be ready to play 3 division 1 teams at super 8 level this year.

It was in Kevin Walshs 4th year that Galway were in divsion 1 and in that summer they were able to compete at super 8 last season. So I think next year just like Kevin Walsh in his fourth year , I think next year Andy McEntee will be much better able to deal with Super 8 with division 1 football in the spring. The same way kildare and Galway competed at super 8 level last year. This was because both had division 1 football behind them. Dont judge this Meath team in this years championship. Next summer after a spring in divsion 1 will when we will have a better idea how Meath are.

Regards Meath dont have enough good players. I would disagree with that. People outside the county havent seen this Meath team very little. In 2017 and 2018 there was no live Meath games on RTE or Tnag of Meaths matchs and only Donegal game was on tv for the general public. So must havent seen this new Meath team with the exception of Saturday game. The strange thing is Meaths best players didnt play well and yet Meath only lost by 2 points. Meath do have good footballers like Donal Keoghan Conor McGill James McEntee Cillian Sullivan. Graham Reilly Michael Newman Brian Menton are the more experienced players. But Meaths best players didnt play well.

James McEntee is a quality wing back. He was a marked man on Saturday. But he marked Ryan McHugh. McHugh and McEntee cancelled each other out. Both r one of the best players on each team. The same way lee keegan and Diarmaid Connolly cancel each other out. James McEntee Donal keoghan and Niall kane were brillant v Donegal in Ballybofey. Kane is injured and cud be gone for the year.

Keoghan did his job on Saturday , defended well. But keoghan has been outstanding at centre back the driving team forward . Keoghan is a top class defender who would walk onto every team in div 1 including Dublin. He is better defender then kerry or Galway have. Another player that people will see how good he is in coming year with more Meath games live on tv in next years spring. Cillian Sullivan was very good in the first half. He was also tighly marked in the game. This is what players like J McEntee and Sullivan must get used to. They are good footballers who have been consistently good. But now they will get special attention from opposition. This is a new experience which I have no doubt they will adapt. Cillian Sullivan is also very talented footballer who has skill pace and vision.

And finally Conor McGill had a right battle with Murphy. Murphy got the upper hand. Every full back wud struggle on Murphy. Conor McGill is as good a full back in the country , another quality player.

To say Meath dont have good players is wrong. Donal keoghan James McEntee Cillian Sullivan and Conor McGill are aall.quality players who would get most teams in div 1. While players like Seamus Lavin Niall Kane Bryan McMahon and Thomas Reilly are all developing as footballers as they get more experience. But for me Donal keoghan and Conor McGill would walk onto kerry and Galway defence and both would get onto Dublin defence. So to. say Meath have no good players when two of their defenders would walk onto any team in divsion 1 , is untrue.

And there is players returning next year eg Ronan Jones Donal lenihan and Alan Forde who all have potential. And our under 20 team this year built around two minor leinster winning teams would have 3 or 4 talented players who could make similar impact to Daragh Campion did off last years under 20 team. I think next spring when Meath are playing division 1 people will see more and rate higher players like Keoghan McGill Sullivan and J McEntee. All good footballers. We do need 3 to 4 or maybe 5 additions to Saturdays team. But with returning players and underage team I think we can find 3 to 4 new players for next year which will add to this team. Just like Kevin Walsh who took til his 4th year to get Galway to div 1 level I expect McEntee in his fourth year get Meath up to that level. I cud be wrong. But I do believe do it. Why ?

The victory and draw over Galway and Roscommon in last two years ( Both division 1 teams ) and excellent performances v Donegal twice and Tyrone ( both top 6 teams ). If Meath had no good players they wouldn't have beaten Galway drew with Roscommon in Roscommon and played very well and nearly beat Donegal on two occasions and Tyrone in the last two years. U dont nearly beat All Ireland finalist last year and have no good footballers.

Regards Meaths fading in the second half is down inexperience and panel dept. Donegal are young but more experienced. Meath are young and very inexperienced. Only 3 players who started for Meath on Saturday started in Meaths last game in Croker two years ago. Meath when they went into lead. They should have played more possession football. Instead of attacking attacking. They needed to be cuter.

Also Donegal panel after Dublin is one of best. Donegal cud also bring on quality subs. Meath have some decent options on the bench. But not at the level of Donegal.

And finally these Meath players have had 8 games in 10 weeks and 3 Byrne cup games and challenge v Dubs. Meath have played pretty much same team and same subs since mid December . I think Meath used 24 or 25 players in the league. Most teams I saw where using 35 or 36 players. I think after a hard league campaign and small group of players used this effected Meath. Also Donegal had players back from injury and club action. So many of the Donegal players who came off the bench and some who started where fresh after only returning to Donegal panel in last few weeks. About 24 or 25 players and about ten players on first 15 have basically on the go for Meath since before christmas with the charity challenge game v Dubs. I felt Meaths lack of dept on the panel and using small number of players in the league explained Meaths fading in second half.

But Donegal won was coz Donegal pushing up, Donegals bench, Donegal nulifying Newman , Murphys influence growing and simply Donegal are a better team a top 6 r reasons thats why Donegal won. The better team won.

Next years league campaign will tell how good Meath r. Then we will know for certain what this Meath can do in next years and next year's championship. This year I think the championship will be up and down. Laois or Westmeath in leinster semi final looks a very tricky asignment as both got promotion to div 2 this spring and both r flying at the moment. But at the end of next year 2020 will be the year to see and find out how good Meath really r. Next year will tell all.

Furlong1949 (Meath) - Posts: 815 - 03/04/2019 19:54:37    2177576

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Replying To Furlong1949:  "I agree with some of ur points.

Regards fitness I dont think that is the reason for Meaths improvement . Here is the evidence. In 2017 we were super fit and the fittest team in div 2 , yet we had a poor season. In 2018 we were super fit and probaly fittest team in div 2 yet we were nearly relegated and had a poor season. How do we know this. Well in 90% of games in 2017 2018 Meath finished games strongly. In 2017 Meath finished strongly v Down Clare Fermanagh Galway Louth Sligo and Donegal. In 2018 Meath finished strongly v Down Clare Roscommon Louth and Tyrone. The level of performance was poor in 2017 2018 but not the fitness in 2017 2018.

So here are the reasons for Meaths improvement. It was always going to take McEntee three year to improve things ( the same as Boylan Dwyer and Kevin Walsh ) , the introduction of Nally as a coach. a group players starting to peak as footballers eg McEntee Sullivan , the introduction of young under 21 talent first since 2012 who have made instant impact and the moving of James McEntee to wing back and moving of Donal keoghan to centre back r all reasons why Meath improved this spring.

Meath are actually following the same path as Galway and hopefully they do that. Kevin Walsh faced the same situation to McEntee when he took over. Both McEntee and Walsh took over counties with sucess in the past but both were in the doldrums since 2001. In his first two year under Walsh Galway were poor. In McEntees first two years Meath were poor. In Walshs third year Galway were promoted to div 1 . In McEntees 3 rd year Meath were promoted. In Walshs third year Galway reached quater final / super 8 and were poor v Kerry I think. If there was a super 8 that year Galway wud have been hammered. So I have feeling if Meath reached the super 8 this year they could have similar performances as Galway v kerry in 2017 q finals and Roscommon last year. I dont think Meath wud be ready to play 3 division 1 teams at super 8 level this year.

It was in Kevin Walshs 4th year that Galway were in divsion 1 and in that summer they were able to compete at super 8 last season. So I think next year just like Kevin Walsh in his fourth year , I think next year Andy McEntee will be much better able to deal with Super 8 with division 1 football in the spring. The same way kildare and Galway competed at super 8 level last year. This was because both had division 1 football behind them. Dont judge this Meath team in this years championship. Next summer after a spring in divsion 1 will when we will have a better idea how Meath are.

Regards Meath dont have enough good players. I would disagree with that. People outside the county havent seen this Meath team very little. In 2017 and 2018 there was no live Meath games on RTE or Tnag of Meaths matchs and only Donegal game was on tv for the general public. So must havent seen this new Meath team with the exception of Saturday game. The strange thing is Meaths best players didnt play well and yet Meath only lost by 2 points. Meath do have good footballers like Donal Keoghan Conor McGill James McEntee Cillian Sullivan. Graham Reilly Michael Newman Brian Menton are the more experienced players. But Meaths best players didnt play well.

James McEntee is a quality wing back. He was a marked man on Saturday. But he marked Ryan McHugh. McHugh and McEntee cancelled each other out. Both r one of the best players on each team. The same way lee keegan and Diarmaid Connolly cancel each other out. James McEntee Donal keoghan and Niall kane were brillant v Donegal in Ballybofey. Kane is injured and cud be gone for the year.

Keoghan did his job on Saturday , defended well. But keoghan has been outstanding at centre back the driving team forward . Keoghan is a top class defender who would walk onto every team in div 1 including Dublin. He is better defender then kerry or Galway have. Another player that people will see how good he is in coming year with more Meath games live on tv in next years spring. Cillian Sullivan was very good in the first half. He was also tighly marked in the game. This is what players like J McEntee and Sullivan must get used to. They are good footballers who have been consistently good. But now they will get special attention from opposition. This is a new experience which I have no doubt they will adapt. Cillian Sullivan is also very talented footballer who has skill pace and vision.

And finally Conor McGill had a right battle with Murphy. Murphy got the upper hand. Every full back wud struggle on Murphy. Conor McGill is as good a full back in the country , another quality player.

To say Meath dont have good players is wrong. Donal keoghan James McEntee Cillian Sullivan and Conor McGill are aall.quality players who would get most teams in div 1. While players like Seamus Lavin Niall Kane Bryan McMahon and Thomas Reilly are all developing as footballers as they get more experience. But for me Donal keoghan and Conor McGill would walk onto kerry and Galway defence and both would get onto Dublin defence. So to. say Meath have no good players when two of their defenders would walk onto any team in divsion 1 , is untrue.

And there is players returning next year eg Ronan Jones Donal lenihan and Alan Forde who all have potential. And our under 20 team this year built around two minor leinster winning teams would have 3 or 4 talented players who could make similar impact to Daragh Campion did off last years under 20 team. I think next spring when Meath are playing division 1 people will see more and rate higher players like Keoghan McGill Sullivan and J McEntee. All good footballers. We do need 3 to 4 or maybe 5 additions to Saturdays team. But with returning players and underage team I think we can find 3 to 4 new players for next year which will add to this team. Just like Kevin Walsh who took til his 4th year to get Galway to div 1 level I expect McEntee in his fourth year get Meath up to that level. I cud be wrong. But I do believe do it. Why ?

The victory and draw over Galway and Roscommon in last two years ( Both division 1 teams ) and excellent performances v Donegal twice and Tyrone ( both top 6 teams ). If Meath had no good players they wouldn't have beaten Galway drew with Roscommon in Roscommon and played very well and nearly beat Donegal on two occasions and Tyrone in the last two years. U dont nearly beat All Ireland finalist last year and have no good footballers.

Regards Meaths fading in the second half is down inexperience and panel dept. Donegal are young but more experienced. Meath are young and very inexperienced. Only 3 players who started for Meath on Saturday started in Meaths last game in Croker two years ago. Meath when they went into lead. They should have played more possession football. Instead of attacking attacking. They needed to be cuter.

Also Donegal panel after Dublin is one of best. Donegal cud also bring on quality subs. Meath have some decent options on the bench. But not at the level of Donegal.

And finally these Meath players have had 8 games in 10 weeks and 3 Byrne cup games and challenge v Dubs. Meath have played pretty much same team and same subs since mid December . I think Meath used 24 or 25 players in the league. Most teams I saw where using 35 or 36 players. I think after a hard league campaign and small group of players used this effected Meath. Also Donegal had players back from injury and club action. So many of the Donegal players who came off the bench and some who started where fresh after only returning to Donegal panel in last few weeks. About 24 or 25 players and about ten players on first 15 have basically on the go for Meath since before christmas with the charity challenge game v Dubs. I felt Meaths lack of dept on the panel and using small number of players in the league explained Meaths fading in second half.

But Donegal won was coz Donegal pushing up, Donegals bench, Donegal nulifying Newman , Murphys influence growing and simply Donegal are a better team a top 6 r reasons thats why Donegal won. The better team won.

Next years league campaign will tell how good Meath r. Then we will know for certain what this Meath can do in next years and next year's championship. This year I think the championship will be up and down. Laois or Westmeath in leinster semi final looks a very tricky asignment as both got promotion to div 2 this spring and both r flying at the moment. But at the end of next year 2020 will be the year to see and find out how good Meath really r. Next year will tell all."
I think u would also have to say that Eamon Doherty coming on and nullifying O'Sullivan another factor.

panamasam (Australia) - Posts: 1988 - 03/04/2019 21:54:34    2177592

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Replying To panamasam:  "I think u would also have to say that Eamon Doherty coming on and nullifying O'Sullivan another factor."
Definatly Panamasam. Sullivan was causing problems but Doherty coming on took him out of the game. Thats what happened. Meath players were running amok eg McMahon Newman Sullivan. Donegal management saw this and acted. Having Bonner and Rockford managing the team means Donegal have top class management team. Donegal brought McGee on to mark Newman .It worked. Donegal brought on Doherty to mark Sullivan it worked. It showed the strenght of the Donegal bench. Donegal have one strongest panels in the country. Meath didnt have options like that on the bench . Also shows great tactical awareness on Donegals part. They pushed up big time in second half.

Meath will gain so much from the game. The experience will be of great for them. Only their first time as a team in Croker. Say if Meath reach a leinster final. They would be meeting a Dublin side who have won 9 leinster finals in Croke Park and6 All Ireland finals in Croke Park and probaly maybe up to 100 matchs in Croke Park from league to championship. Against a Meath team who have won no finals in Croke Park and only won 2 matchs in Croke Park up to that stage. So every time Meath play in Croke Park and a division 1 team it will be bringing them on. Meath havent won a match in Croke Park in 5 years and had some really bad experiences thre in those five years eg Dublin 2014 2016 , Westmeath 2015. So Saturday actually was overall a positive experience. It would have been nice to win but that game will stand to Meath. Lots things to work on. But positives to work on.

I also be wud concerned what I call great league campaign/ crap championship following. So many teams have a great league then have a poor championship. Its like u need to have to peak twice a season. Remeber going back to laois in 1986 won their first and only national league div 1 title. Great things were expected of them. They lost first round to Wicklow in Battle of Aughrim. Kildare reached league final under Dywer in early 90s. louth knocked them out of early rounds of leinster championship. Kildare also I think in 2012 had a good league and then poor championship. Derry also reached a league final in the early part of this decade and also had a poor championship. Cork also reached a league final in this decade and a great league then was followed up with a poor championship. Roscommon in 2015 were promoted to div 1 after great league campaign. They followed up with a poor championship. So I think Meath will have to be wary of that. They need to peak again in the summer.

Furlong1949 (Meath) - Posts: 815 - 03/04/2019 22:59:02    2177600

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