Mayo manager Stephen Rochford said his side didn't panic during their All-Ireland qualifier clash with Fermanagh, despite trailing by six points at the interval.

The westerners had hoped to get their All-Ireland campaign back on track after a surprise Connacht championship defeat to Galway, but were made to work hard as Fermanagh put in a strong first half.

A noticeably hoarse Rochford said his side made some "silly mistakes" in the opening that "lead to the goal and two or three points."

However, he added "There was never a sense of panic, we knew if we could tap on a score or two, and we did that very early in the second half, we felt if we could get inside three or four points we’d find ourselves in the game."

Mayo introduced some heavy hitters from their bench as they chased the game, with the impact of the fresh players pleasing the manager.

"I though our bench had a really great impact. Donal Vaughan came in there and added a little more strength and dynamism from the half back line.

"Alan Dillon got in there and could have scored two points but certainly handled ball and made good decisions when that game could've been a bit panicky but we were able to navigate our way through."

Mayo's prolific half back line is a feature of their game and Lee Keegan's impact proved crucial, marauding up field to score two points.

After the game he echoed his manager's point about calm heads, saying the side didn't panic in the dressing room at half time.

"We came in at half time and reassessed what we did and didn’t do. At the end of the day we’ve to trust Stephen, the way he’s setting up the structure, the process.

"We just came out in the second half and put the foot down."

Both Keegan and Rochford were full of praise for Fermanagh, who were right in the game until a controversial penalty decision late on decided it in Mayo's favour.

They also both know that Mayo will have to do it all again next weekend if they are to keep their All-Ireland dream's alive.

As Keegan says, "this is real championship time" for the Mayo footballers.