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Marc Ó Sé calls for Kerry to start David Moran against Mayo

Jack O’Connor has used the experienced midfielder as an impact sub so far in the championship.

Kerry verteran David Moran.
Kerry verteran David Moran.
Image: James Crombie/INPHO

DAVID MORAN HAS become accustomed to the role of impact sub for Kerry this season, but Marc Ó Sé feels Sunday’s clash against Mayo is the ideal opportunity to throw him in from the start.

The long-serving midfielder missed the league through injury and arrived off the bench in the 50th minute against Cork and 51st minute versus Limerick in Munster.

Kerry clipped Mayo’s wings with a 15-point beatdown in the Division 1 decider in April on a day where James Horan’s team left their full-back line criminally exposed.

Mayo are expected to be far more defensively sound for the All-Ireland quarter-final showdown. In that case a player with Moran’s kick passing ability could help unlock their defence.

“You look at Mayo in the National League final, they had a lot of injuries that day,” said Ó Sé on the latest episode of The42 GAA Weekly.

“I’m not trying to talk them up or talk Kerry down but the reality is they were well off the pace that day. Are they going to give (David) Clifford the same space and time he got that day? There isn’t a hope in hell.

“I’ve heard Clifford being interviewed and he spoke about the challenge he faces coming up against defensive systems which basically means you’re being double teamed all day. I don’t think he gets the credit for the amount fo times he lays off a ball and creates a score for somebody else. Where he draws a player in and slips it.

“The other side of it is where is David Moran at? Is he going to get game-time? Personally I’d love to see him starting midfield. Obviously Jack O’Connor doesn’t see him as a 70-minute player any more but I’d love to see him getting 50 minutes.

“His first instinct is to kick the ball in, that counteracts any defensive system the opposition are going to play because his first instinct is to play the ball and he’s a good kicker.

“I’d love to see him start midfield with Diarmuid O’Connor with the view of bringing Jack Barry in after 50 minutes. But I don’t see that happening I still see Kerry going with Diarmuid and Jack in the middle of the field but it’s about getting the ball in as quickly as possible to Clifford and Seanie Shea.”

Ó Sé is wary of the pre-match talk that Kerry will encounter little difficulty. Mayo had the benefit of a clash against Kildare a fortnight ago while Kerry haven’t played Division 1 opposition since that league final.

“Talking to people all week and you hear, ‘Kerry should hammer Mayo.’ We just don’t know what Mayo team is going to show up and that’s the reality. If you’re looking on the evidence of the last day, they don’t have the forwards that can win this game for them.

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“But what they do have is they’ve a set of defenders that are so strong going forward, tearing off down the field, the likes of Keegan, who’ll go down as one of the greatest players to ever come out of Mayo, and Durcan. They still have that quality.

“Kerry are coming into this game without a test. Limerick put up no show on the day (in the Munster final). In Pairc Ui Rinn fair enough, Cork gave it to them for 50 minutes, but Kerry are coming in cold. From a Mayo point of view it’s the one thing that will really help them.”

He believes Ryan O’Donoghue must start if he has recovered from the injury that ruled him out against Kildare. 

“How unlucky are Mayo, if you consider they could have had a full-forward line of Ryan O’Donoghue, Cillian O’Connor and Tommy Conroy. For most of the games they’ve been down two of those three players.

“On Sunday if you could even have O’Donoghue and O’Connor (playing). O’Donoghue gave Tom O’Sullivan a right tough night out in Austin Stack Park in the league. He was on fire. He’s a fella who wins his own ball, he’s a playmaker and gets his own score. If he’s ready to go he has to start.”

To listen to the full episode, go to members.the42.ie.

About the author:

Kevin O'Brien

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