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# Empire State of Mind
Mayo are Big Apple bound - 'It's a cool setting over there and New York is a class city'
Aidan O’Shea reckons cost should not come into the debate over whether New York’s involvement is worthwhile.

Ray Lennon / INPHO Mayo are heading to play New York for the first time since 2009. Ray Lennon / INPHO / INPHO

MAYO ARE BOUND for the Big Apple this week ahead of Sunday’s Connacht opener amidst debate over the value of New York’s championship participation.

But Mayo’s Aidan O’Shea has backed their continued involvement and insisted cost should not come into it.

O’Shea made his senior championship debut for Mayo back in Gaelic Park and the venue is ‘a cool setting’ that he is in favour of. The 2013 All Star also insists that affording Irish emigrants the chance to see an inter-county game makes it a worthwhile exercise.

“If you live in Dublin, you get to see football every day of the week and you get the pleasure of coming in and maybe even watching a club game. They don’t get the pleasure of watching Bernard Brogan or Colm Cooper every day of the week.

Fans watch today's game in Gaelic Park Ed Mulholland / INPHO Fans watch on in Gaelic Park in the 2012 meeting of New York and Sligo. Ed Mulholland / INPHO / INPHO

“We don’t all have the ability to live in Ireland at the moment for economic reasons or that. People might throw that comment out in the air but the fact of the matter is that there’s a lot of Irish people over in New York.

“More and more people know about our game and this is an opportunity for them to go over and see the game. Of course there’s value. People talk about cost and that but the cost is minimum really in the overall scheme of things.

“It’s a cool setting over there and New York is a class city so it’s a nice place to be kicking off the championship. I’ve played there a good few times because of the FBD trip and I said I made my debut over there. It’s class.”

The huge scare Mayo endured in 2011 before prevailing after extra-time against London in the Connacht championship will inform their approach to next Sunday evening’s game. They may be raging-hot favourites but will be preparing diligently.

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Supporters and the Mayo bench watch the action Dan Sheridan / INPHO Mayo defeated London by 0-19 to 2-10 after extra-time in Ruislip in 2011. Dan Sheridan / INPHO / INPHO

“We should have lost that (London) game,” recalls O’Shea. “You just prepare in the right way and if you don’t prepare in the right way then you get caught. We’ll make sure we get the job done over there.

“They seem to have two very big midfielders this year, Brendan Quigley being one. It’s kind of difficult to talk about because you don’t want to disrespect the fact that New York and the people of New York make a great effort. It’s obviously a big thing for them over there. But absolutely, just get in and get the job done and come home.”

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