Roscommon boss Kevin McStay said last week's clash between Mayo and Galway was "the Connacht final for all intents and purposes", but he believes his team can finally turn some heads and earn some respect.

The Rossies cruised past Leitrim 2-23 to 1-09 at Dr Hyde Park on Sunday to book a July 9 date with the Tribesmen, who battled past 14-man Mayo last week.

McStay said his team haven't earned the right to be in the same conversation as the big two in the province, though he is quietly optimistic that they can right some of the wrongs of poor past displays against Galway when they get a swing at the title.

"We have no right to be even considered," McStay said. "The Connacht final was last Sunday for all intents and purposes.

"We’re going to go to Galway to make amends for some of the stuff we did previously up there, which wasn’t acceptable."

"I’m not happy about that but I have to accept it. That’s just the way it is.

"We haven’t done anything to break into that bubble, but that’s not to say we won’t do something to try and break into the bubble in the next few weeks.

"We’re going to go to Galway to make amends for some of the stuff we did previously up there, which wasn’t acceptable.

"It’s a long, long time since Roscommon have taken out one of those two big teams, Mayo or Galway, so there’s a good chance. We’ve a young team and they're going to be learning all the time.

"We just want to be super, super competitive in that final."

Last year, Roscommon's championship started with a huge scare in the Bronx when they just about got past New York.

It set the tone for their summer; after a hammering to Galway in the Connacht final, Clare crushed them in the qualifiers.

This time round, McStay's men had a lengthy rest after the league and, though the manager recognised far tougher challenges await, he was happy to get over the first hurdle.

 "We have to treat every game like it’s our last," he said.

"We prepared very well for it. The day we got, with the weather conditions, suited the way we wanted to play so we got a break that way.

"We got some nice early scores to settle the younger members of the team so we’re in the final in comfortable enough circumstances. Unfortunately it bears no resemblance to what’s ahead of us."