Monday 20 November 2017

Fenlon revs up players to put Bohs in driving seat

Bohemians boss Pat Fenlon had to rally his troops before they finally eased themselves into the driving seat for Setanta Cup semi-final qualification at Coleraine. The reigning League of Ireland champions struggled initially but came good after the break.

"Our first-half performance was not acceptable and I told the players that. We just didn't perform," Fenlon said.

"We were much better in the second period when we found our rhythm."

Fenlon's side, who begin the defence of their title at home to ambitious top-flight newcomers Sporting Fingal on Friday, trailed to a second-minute goal from Northern Ireland international Rory Patterson, but bounced back with an equaliser from Owen Heary before half-time.

Defender Mark Rossiter and substitute Paddy Madden both scored in the second half to ensure Bohs are in pole position going into next month's home clash with Glentoran who they now lead by three points in Group C.

Fenlon added: "We have given ourselves a good chance of going through. But there is a lot still to play for in the final game when the Glens come to us."

Coleraine boss David Platt made nine changes from the side that beat Cliftonville in midweek but admitted his side was second best after the break when Bohs turned up the heat.

Defeat ends Coleraine's interest but that suits Platt now. "I don't mean to be disrespectful to the competition but we can focus on the league race and our cup involvement," he said.

"Bohs displayed their undoubted quality as the game progressed and we had no answer to that," Platt said.

Coleraine -- McCormick, Canning, Mukendi (McVey 44), McLaughlin, Watt, Tommons, Heggarty, Lowry, Boyce, Tolan (Gibson 78), Patterson (Harkin 68).

Bohemians -- B Murphy, Heary, Powell, Shelley, McGuinness, A Murphy, Cronin, Rossiter, Brennan (Greene 74), Quigley Burke 84), Byrne (Madden 34).

Ref -- A Black (Antrim).

Irish Independent

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