I’m still on a high after Saturday night’s win over Monaghan. It was a brilliant performance and we were much the better team.
We only made it more difficult by gifting them two first half goals and we really had to win the game twice.
Monaghan were on the rack when we gave away the first goal and we had moved clear again when we conceded the penalty.
There is no excuse for the first goal when we got caught napping and in fairness to Anthony Thompson, I really felt for him. I have no problem with the penalty being awarded but I think a black card was too big a punishment. In fairness to Maurice Deegan, he was playing by the book. But that is why I dislike the black card. I feel the penalty is punishment enough and besides there were a lot of more serious things that went on in the game that went unpunished.
We have replaced a lot of big men with smaller men with great pace.
Martin O’Reilly has finally done what he has been doing for the last couple of years with MacCumhaill’s, scoring.
Rory Kavanagh rolled back the years and it was unfortunate that he got his marching orders. Martin McElhinney had one of his best games at senior level. He was taken off but they had the good sense to put him back on again. Michael Murphy got through a power of work despite having to contend with attention, both on and off the ball. Eoin McHugh had a good game and it was good to see Patrick McBrearty back to his old self. Frank McGlynn was Frank McGlynn and punched in another big 70 minutes.
I had great sympathy for Ryan McHugh. He had to contend with a lot of stuff, both on and off the ball. But he did still manage to win the late free for a crucial point. One of the other positives was to see Mark McHugh back. He had a very good game and he kicked one of the points of the game. It was a great win and a big congratulations to Rory Gallagher and his management team and the boys.
Finally, this week we are going to have to tidy up our act on the sideline. Management should show more faith in the players on the field and allow them get on with the game. They are a very intelligent bunch of men and a good few of them are All-Ireland winners and they will make the right decisions on the field. It was management interference that led to the first Monaghan goal.
Brian McEniff was in conversation Tom Comack