A crazy weekend for Kildare, where do we start? Their performance against Meath?
They have genuine reasons to be unhappy with Michael Collins' performance but Kildare didn't perform. They should have passed this test with flying colours but were incredibly flat.
There will massive disappointment in Kildare given supporters fully believed they were good value to rival Dublin for Leinster. Four of the six forwards being taken off will rock the attack's confidence.
Different year, same problems. It's been said before, but maybe they are just better athletes than players.
That's an accurate summation. How Michael Collins gave a hop-ball after Stephen Bray's full frontal on a Kildare player is beyond me but Kildare were stuck to the ground. They're all about runners and at no stage did Tomás O'Connor have two or three options when he won the ball but most significantly, at no stage did the player in possession around the middle have two or three runners at either side. Ollie Lyons, Hugh McGrillen etc, rarely if ever got forward
Kildare were very disappointing and I think that they made mistakes with their line up too. Rob Kelly was really impressive against Offaly and yet he was dropped for Flynn. The ball they put into Tomas O' Conor was poor too. Unless they go for a serious run in the qualifiers - is it au revoir to McGeeney?
I think that was Kildare's worst championship performance by some way since Louth 2010 though Brendan and it was probably even worse than that. The question is - was it just a really bad day, or symptomatic of something more terminal. I suppose we won't have a better idea until the Battle of Breffni.
Lyons got forward at the end, Daragh, but by then it was too late. They were wiped in midfield. The constant changing in that area this year didn't help, it seems.
Five years and no championship silverware would suggest he's under pressure. But I don't think he gets enough credit for taking an average team and turning them into contenders
@ Terry. "Contenders" - is that a fair statement after yesterday? Contenders for what - Flakiness in the heat of championship?
Meath deserve credit though, as does Banty for bringing John Evans. The young players were tremendous, Carroll and Forde. Midfield has always been a problem and the chopping and changing has largely been due to injuries. Apart from Dermot, they have never had someone to field a ball. O'Connor might have been an option out there but they were blitzed because they couldn't break the ball and the breaking ball is their bread and butter.
@Ray Silke ah in fairness Ray, no one will want them in the qualifiers
The pressure is internal. Kildare have won three Leinsters in 56 years. You can't say in one breath 'they're athletes, not footballers' and then say 'they're chokers'. Maybe they are a certain level and that's certainly a lot higher level than they were in 2008. But they were third best in a two-horse race yesterday.
Kildare do perform when their backs are to the wall, though. For four years, they're unbeaten in qualifier football. If the mentality is right, they should thrive on what's ahead of them in the Cavan cauldron.
Ok lads, we've skirted around it a while now - Seanie Johnston... begin
@ Terry. That is a fair point and maybe they can get back on the "horse" again. However, they have not won a Leinster - & I don't think they got to the last 4 in the All-Ireland series either....I might be a bit harsh as they wrecked a blue chip accumulator....and I am a bit raw with them over it!!!
The big losers were Coill Dubh in my opinion. The decision to play him completely devalues the Kildare SHC
The Seanie Johnston story has been news for months now and reached what we thought was a crescendo at the weekend. That was until this morning's draw. Every right-minded media outlet has covered it. You would take offence at being told you were stirring the pot if you actually thought there was any credence in it.
I disagree about the finishing though Mort, they're one of the highest scorers in inter-county football since 2009! I don't get that playing for 60 seconds devalues a championship. Coill Dubh won. No harm done in my opinion. The barrels are being aimed at the wrong direction.
What other competition would allow that happen?
I really do think we're not giving Meath credit here though. And Banty. His grave has been danced on by his own executive. He did a check list, saw there were issues and got someone in - Evans. He's also been crippled with injuries but trusted the youth.
McEnaney deserves plenty of credit, Daragh, and having the liathroidi to stand up to the Meath board. He also listened to the players hence John Evans' introduction and Trevor Giles' brief being extended from physio to forwards coach.