Monday 19 March 2018

McGonagle eyes fresh bid to usurp Cork

Donnchadh Boyle

Donnchadh Boyle

MONAGHAN ladies football manager Gregory McGonagle insists his side can go one better after last year's narrow All-Ireland final defeat to Cork.

The Farney girls fell two points short of the Rebelettes, who collected their sixth Brendan Martin Cup in seven seasons and they return to league action this weekend with the visit of Laois.

And with the majority of last year's panel back for 2012, McGonagle has added further depth to the side.

"We gave the girls a break and met again and had a chat. One of the big things that came back from the players was developing a stronger bench and we have brought in a few new players and they have freshened things up. We have lost a few but most of the key players are back," he said.

With Dublin's 2010 success the only blot on Cork's copybook since they won their first title in 2005, McGonagle agrees they are still the team to beat but that the gap is closing with each passing season.

"They are a formidable side, you don't win six of seven All-Irelands without being great. But that's the challenge and that's what I keep saying to the girls, they are the benchmark we have to get to. There's no point in getting to Croke Park and then thinking we can't beat them. We genuinely believe we can beat them.

"We have good forwards and we got four All Stars, with two of them in the full-back line, so we are a well-balanced team and hopefully the subs we bring in this year will get us closer."

Irish Independent

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