Michael Funston admits Sunday’s 3-0 win at Shamrock Rovers B shaved a few miles off the journey home from Tallaght Stadium.
The Finn Harps midfielder scored a penalty in-between Keith Cowan’s header and Pat McCann’s stunning strike in what was a rare away win for the Ballybofey side.
Last year, over the course of the entire season, Harps won only once away from home - at Longford Town in May - in the Airtricity League Division One.
“It was a good result considering last year’s form away from home,” Funston said this week.
“It certainly shortened the run home but listen, we’re not at full pelt and, like many teams in the division, are only finding our feet. But it’s important to get momentum.
Funston was part of Felix Healy’s side that won the First Division 10 years ago. In between, he had an 18-month stint at Dungannon Swifts before re-signing for Harps in June 2012.
“I’ve seen plenty of changes down the years at Harps - maybe even too many you could say,” he added. “Perhaps on occasion a bit of stability would’ve been better but football is a cut-throat business that is driven by results.”
Now 28, Funston has seen the revolving door swing at Finn Park. Ollie Horgan is the latest to try his luck in the Twin Towns.
“I actually didn’t really know Ollie all that well till we sat down over the winter,” Funston said.
“I would’ve talked to him at Ulster senior League games here and there but that was it. He’s still settling in here at Harps but it’s obvious at this stage that’s he’s very honest and there’s no nonsense with him. I’d like to think I’m honest enough so that’s fine with me.”
Harps might’ve won in Tallaght but the nature of Shamrock Rovers B’s composition in the second flight means it’s still difficult to judge just how good they are.
Perhaps the battling scoreless draw with Waterford United on opening night provides a more apt appraisal.
Harps, on Friday, welcome Cobh Ramblers to Navenny Street. They’re a team that Harps produced two of their better performances against last term - a 4-1 win in the league before the 4-0 victory at St Colman’s Park in the FAI Cup third round replay.
“They’re always a difficult team to play against,” Funston said of Cobh. “Last year we did well against them in a couple of the games but all we’re doing this year is taking each game as it comes.
“I know that’s a cliché but we’ve probably been guilty in the past of looking too far ahead of ourselves. You can lose the run of yourself at that.
“All we want to do on Friday is get our first home win under our belt and then take it from there. We’ve Galway at home the following weekend but we’ll worry about that next week.
“It’s going to be tough and physical but that’s the way it is in the First Division most weeks.
“It’s the nature of the league and it’s up to us to be man enough to stand up to that type of challenge.”