Football talking points: Mayo and Derry's standout tie, and have Tyrone turned a corner?

1. Galway hope lightning doesn’t strike twice

football talking points: mayo and derry's standout tie, and have tyrone turned a corner?

Galway manager Paadraig Joyce.

It was déjà vu for Galway as they failed to beat Armagh in their final group game for the second year running and they now return to the preliminary quarter-finals.

While they suffered a last-gasp defeat to the Orchard county last season, it was a draw on this occasion after Pádraig Joyce’s side surrendered a five-point lead.

It was at this stage that they exited the championship last year. Mayo came to Salthill and won by the minimum, 1-10 to 0-12. They have home advantage again at Pearse Stadium, but will be hoping lightning doesn’t strike twice as they go the indirect route. The Connacht champions need to get to the last eight this time around.

Standing in their way are Monaghan. The 2023 semi-finalists haven’t had the best year, suffering league relegation and an early Ulster exit at the hands of Cavan. They came through arguably the easiest group, but should have beaten Meath by more last weekend, meaning Louth secured home advantage and Vinny Corey’s men go on the road.

2. Have Tyrone turned a corner?

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football talking points: mayo and derry's standout tie, and have tyrone turned a corner?

Brian Kennedy and Padraig Hampsey after last weekend's win over Cork.

That’s the big question ahead of their meeting with Roscommon. They seem to have weathered a stormy period and turned results around.

The Red Hand lost twice to Donegal, in the Ulster semi-final after extra-time and in their group opener, while Cavan brought them the distance in provincial fare too.

But they bounced back from that seven-point defeat to Donegal in Ballybofey to secure big wins over Clare (3-15 to 0-10) and Cork (1-18 to 0-17). Goals have been crucial, with Niall Devlin scoring 2-2 in the first half against Clare and Darragh Canavan and Ben Cullen also raising green flags. Brian Dooher’s side came good in the second half against Cork, with the in-form Canavan top-scoring across both games combined with 1-9 (three frees, one mark).

Their next opponents, Roscommon, fell to the Rebels in the preliminary quarter-finals last year, can they reverse their fortunes in another away game?

3. Mayo and Derry’s tie of the round

football talking points: mayo and derry's standout tie, and have tyrone turned a corner?

Tommy Conroy and Brendan Rogers facing off in their league meeting this year.

Once the preliminary quarter-final draw was made on Monday morning, Mayo versus Derry was billed the standout tie. And rightly so.

The Green and Red had no time to lick their wounds after Sunday’s thrilling draw with Dublin at Dr Hyde Park. It looked like Ryan O’Donoghue had won the game with an injury-time free, but Dublin went back up the field and Cormac Costello fisted an equaliser. It ultimately sent Dessie Farrell’s side the direct route, and Mayo the scenic one after they had both previously beaten Roscommon and Cavan.

Derry’s group campaign was less straightforward. After their Ulster quarter-final hammering to Donegal, they were beaten by Galway and Armagh. Having shipped four goals to Donegal, Mickey Harte’s side conceded three to Armagh and were ultimately left with one game to save their season. They needed a late Emmett Bradley goal to do so against Westmeath in Newry, so limp on to Castlebar.

Could home advantage be key for Mayo at MacHale Park, or might Derry rise again?

4. Louth and Cork look for response

football talking points: mayo and derry's standout tie, and have tyrone turned a corner?

Who can bounce back better from their defeats last weekend here? Louth lost to Kerry by 14 points, while there were four in the difference as Cork were defeated by Tyrone.

Louth nominated Inniskeen as their home venue for this fixture, the site of their big win over Meath in the group opener. Ger Brennan’s side will be hell-bent on dusting themselves down and creating more happy memories at the Monaghan club.

This is the third year in-a-row Louth and Cork have met in the championship, with the Rebels coming out on top in both previous encounters. But Louth have won their league meetings over the last two seasons, so it’s extremely difficult to call.

Brian Hurley’s return to the matchday panel is a boost for Cork, who dropped from top spot to third in their group last weekend. Onwards.

*****

Saturday

    Galway v Monaghan, Pearse Stadium, Salthill, 4pm - GAAGO

  • Tyrone v Roscommon, O’Neills Healy Park, Omagh, 5pm - GAAGO
  • Mayo v Derry, Hastings Insurance MacHale Park, Castlebar, 6.30pm – GAAGO

Sunday

    Louth v Cork, Grattan Park, Inniskeen, 3pm - GAAGO.

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