Tyrone take advantage of Mayo’s home failings in Castlebar

Mayo now face into a relegation a battle with Donegal in Ballybofey next weekend

Mayo 0-8 Tyrone 2-14

The relegation noose tightened considerably around the neck of Mayo following one of their most dismal league performances as their shocking home record now leaves them heading for the final round and what is essentially a relegation playoff against Donegal in Ballybofey.

An impressive Tyrone secured their Division One status in front of a crowd of 10,000 in Castlebar following a solid performance which saw them score two superb second-half goals, the second coming in injury-time, while Mayo's bad day at the office was summed up when Conor Loftus drove a penalty wide deep in injury time .

Two first-half sending offs – one a straight red for Pádraic McNulty of Tyrone for a reckless challenge on Lee Keegan – might suggest this was an ill-tempered game, but it was anything but.


Along with the sending off of McNulty, Mayo's Colm Boyle was also dispatched on a second yellow card moments earlier, while we had two black cards, including a bizarre one for Andy Moran for what appeared to be impeding the referee.

To add to the drama, 10 minutes of injury time was played at the end of the first half, which had a five-minute delay while Hugh Pat McGeary was stretchered off with a leg injury on a sub-zero but dry afternoon at Elverys MacHale Park.

Keegan and Mayo team-mate Cillian O’Connor were also forced to leave the scene in the first half with injuries, Keegan looking the worse for ware when he had to be linked off holding his shoulder the red-card challenge from McNulty.

It was a half dominated by Tyrone and a strong breeze, with Mayo managing just a point for 40 minutes. That came from Tom Parsons in the third minute, their other two points coming from two Conor Loftus frees deep into that 10 minutes of injury time.

Mathew Donnelly nailed three points from play for Tyrone, Niall Sludden and Frank Burns were also on target from play while frees from Lee Brennan (two) and one from Conor McAliskey had Tyrone ahead by 0-8 to 0-3 at the break.

The door was effectively slammed shut on Mayo when Brennan rounded Ger Cafferkey to fire to the net just three minutes after the restart. Mayo failed to score for 24 minutes of the second half as a strong Tyrone defence just smothered a Mayo attack which failed to fire while Tyrone’s forward division, particularly Donnelly and Brennan, had Mayo’s defence under all sorts of pressure.

The coup de grace was delivered by substitute Conal McCann who fired a rocket past David Clarke. Mayo's woes further compounded in injury-time when Conor Loftus was well wide with a poorly-taken penalty after Tom Parsons had been taken down.

MAYO: D Clarke; C Crowe, G Cafferkey E O'Donoghue; C Boyle, L Keegan, S Coen; T Parsons (0-1), A O'Shea; K McLoughlin, D O'Connor, J Doherty; C O'Connor, A Moran, A Gallagher.

Subs: C Loftus (0-5, four frees) for C O'Connor (inj, 10 mins), P Durcan for Keegan (inj, 34), S O'Shea for A Moran (40, b/c), F Boland (0-1) for Doherty (55), N Douglas (0-1) for D'O'Connor (55), C O'Shea for A O'Shea (60).

TYRONE: M O'Neill; HP McGeary, P Hampsey, C McCarron, C Meyler (0-1); F Burns (0-1), P Harte; C Cavanaugh, P McNulty, M Donnelly (0-4); N Sludden (0-1), C McShea; L Brennan (1-3, one free) C McAliskey (0-3, three frees), M Bradley.

Subs: M McKernan for McGeary (inj, 20 mins), D McClure (0-1) for Colm Cavanaugh (26, b/c), K McGeary for Sludden (52), D Mulgrew for Bradley (55), A McRory for McAliksey (55), C McCann (1-0) for McAliksey (58), R Brennan for C McCarron (66).

Referee: M Deegan (Laois).