Wednesday 12 December 2018

Cork seeking clinical edge to defy odds in Trondheim

Cork City manager John Caulfield. Photo: Sportsfile
Cork City manager John Caulfield. Photo: Sportsfile
Daniel McDonnell

Daniel McDonnell

John Caulfield has told his Cork players to try and shift the pressure on to Rosenborg as they bid to keep Irish interest in Europe alive.

The Leesiders are 2-0 down ahead of their Europa League second leg with the Norwegian champions in Trondheim and need to produce the performance of a lifetime to shock the natives.

Caulfield has conceded that his team's only chance of progression involves breaking the deadlock early on the night and changing the mood around the tie with Rosenborg naturally confident of going through.

"That's the brilliant thing. If you do score it changes the whole mindset," said Caulfield.

"Supporters can get edgy. If we can get that first goal, it opens up the tie and then anything is possible. But, it's easier said than done. We will have to get eerything bang-on.

"You score and you are a goal away from bringing the game to extra-time and they know they have to hang on.

"Psychology is huge in sport and that's why we all love it. In football, that's why you get shock results and we've prepared accordingly."

Caulfield was quite downbeat at the League of Ireland's place in the European pecking order after the disappointing first leg at Turner's Cross when a pair of first-half goals from Jonathan Levi put Rosenborg in control.

The Leesiders forced 11 corners without getting a return, but the manager said it's hard to compete with teams with much greater resources.

But he struck a slightly more positive tone ahead of the decider, saying that the real differences are off the park.

"Players are realistic and intelligent and can see that infrastructure-wise we are miles off but in terms of on the pitch in Europe, we've got some good results and shown we have some very good players," he continued.

Rosenborg v Cork City

Live, RTÉ2, 7.45

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