Mark O’Mahony (Brighton & Hove Albion) – Scout Report

A direct move from the second tier of Irish football to the English Premier League is uncommon; however, Mark O’Mahony has made the jump, recently signing for Brighton & Hove Albion from Cork City. Signed for Brighton’s U21 side, the 18 year-old striker will be aiming to eventually join the contingent of Irish youngsters beginning to get minutes in Premier League sides. 

Although undoubtedly raw, O’Mahony possesses attributes that allow him to be a multi-dimensional forward: competent at stretching backlines, hold-up play and goal-poaching. Currently, aspects of this skillset rely on his commanding physical profile; deceptively mobile, he stands over 6”0’ tall with a broad frame. 


Often utilised in Cork City’s direct build-up style, O’Mahony’s stature allows him to be competitive in aerial duels. However, he’s not yet streetwise enough to excel in this area. He can be reluctant to initiate contact, ultimately allowing opponents to use their momentum to disrupt his balance and positioning. 

This occasionally impacts his hold-up play, which is otherwise effective. O’Mahony receives fairly well with his right foot, maintaining control of sometimes-heavy first touches by directing the ball into secure areas. Preferring to receive square, he’s an efficient link player, typically shifting the ball backwards or wide with simple passes. He has a good feel for the flow of attacking moves and rarely disrupts his team’s momentum. 

Even more encouraging is his off-ball movement. O’Mahony intelligently exploits his opponent’s blind spots, using the uncertainty this causes to create separation. Bursts into space are enhanced by good timing and powerful physical capabilities; he’s both a transitional and penalty box threat. He is calculated when deciding the space he wants to attack, typically favouring near-post runs, but also capable of movements that create space in front of the opposition’s defensive line for cutbacks. 


When found in the box, the accuracy of O’Mahony’s finishing can be inconsistent. Additionally, slight hesitations prevent him from shooting early – before keepers can set themselves. Relative to his role, this may be the part of his skillset that needs the most improvement, although this judgement is based on a small sample of shots. 

A club starting to reap the benefits of establishing a strong network in Ireland, Brighton have identified good value in refining raw but promising LOI talents. O’Mahony is no exception: he has clear upsides as a striker, and Brighton will be keen to ensure this is underpinned by the secure technical foundation needed to fit their game model. Whether his ceiling reaches the level of a consistent Premier League player is debatable, but O’Mahony is definitely capable of picking up senior caps for Ireland.


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