Monday 23 April 2018

'Nobody to blame but ourselves' says Crowley

Noel Horgan

SELECTOR Johnny Crowley pulled no punches when assessing Cork's performance, stating that the win was the only real positive to be taken from the display.

"We were eight points up at half-time, and we expected to drive on in the second half, but we didn't do that, and you'd have to say it was very disappointing. It's hard to put a finger on why we were so poor in the second half, but maybe we felt we had enough done, and sat back on our lead a bit.

"Whatever the reason, we certainly didn't apply ourselves enough, we gave the ball away far too easily, and we were probably lucky to win the game in the end. Anthony Nash saved our blushes very much so, making a great save to keep Offaly at bay with about ten minutes to go, and we could have paid a high price had we conceded a goal at that stage."

Crowley said it was an opportunity lost to make up ground on Limerick in terms of score difference in Division 1B.

"With due respect to Offaly, that was our target today, but we didn't make the most of it, and we have nobody to blame but ourselves. We hit a lot of wides again, some of them were bad wides, and you'd have expected better from our players.

"That's a huge concern at this stage, so there's obviously a lot to be worked on in training over the next few nights," he blasted.

Cork have two more chances to boost their prospects of promotion to Division 1A, starting with the match against Antrim in Ballycastle next Sunday.

"That takes on huge significance now, but unless we show a massive improvement on what we produced today, we're only codding ourselves if we think we can get big wins over Antrim, and over Wexford at home after that.

"The players have been told in no uncertain manner that they will need to improve 100% on today's performance just to beat Antrim up in Ballycastle, and hopefully they will respond to that."

While Cork aren't expected to have dual-players Aidan Walsh and Eon Cadogan available for the long trek to Antrim, Crowley was very happy with the way they both measured up against Offaly

"Eoin played very well in his first game back with us, and I thought Aidan improved on his display in the first game with us against Limerick. As well as scoring two points, Aidan did a lot of running to create space for Seamus Harnedy, who was our top scorer from play, so I suppose there were a few things we can be encouraged about today."