Monday 23 April 2018

Heary blames Bohs slip-up on lack of desire

Owen Heary has accused his Bohemians team of lacking desire after their defeat to Galway. Photo: Sportsfile
Owen Heary has accused his Bohemians team of lacking desire after their defeat to Galway. Photo: Sportsfile
Daniel McDonnell

Daniel McDonnell

A distraught Owen Heary believes that Bohemians simply didn't show enough desire in Friday's stunning loss to Galway United, which handed control of the league title race back to Shamrock Rovers.

Pat Fenlon's Gypsies lost for the third time this season against the relegation contenders and now trail Rovers by two points with one match remaining after the Hoops enjoyed a 2-0 victory over Drogheda.

Michael O'Neill's side also have a better goal difference, which means that if they draw in Bray on Friday then Bohs must beat Dundalk by five clear goals. It's an unlikely scenario, although nothing would be too surprising, given the twists and turns which have already taken place.

However, it has been a weekend of reflection for the Bohs camp, with an emotional Heary admitting it was criminal to relinquish the lead at the top of the table after playing catch-up for so long.

"We've played Galway four times this season and not beaten them," he said. "We didn't show enough desire, we didn't defend properly and the goals conceded were diabolical.

"We're full-time, we've been around the block and there shouldn't be nerves going into these games. We knew what we had to do -- two games to win the league. But it's out of our hands now."

Bohs need a serious favour from a Bray side who have a relegation play-off a couple of days later to worry about. Pat Devlin could field a weakened team, and Heary spoke like a man who didn't expect another shock.

"Not really," he said. "Strange things can happen on the final day of the season. Hopefully they'll be nervous, but I think they'll win it out there," he said. "Basically, we threw it away. We had two games and it was in our hands but we didn't do it. That's not to say that we're throwing in the towel.

"But the lads know they basically threw away the league. The one player who could hold his head up high after Friday was Conor Powell. The rest of us, we didn't do it."

Fenlon was similarly downbeat when asked if he believed another turnaround was possible.

"Rovers probably thought it was gone last week; they're not going to let a second chance slip up," he said.

He stressed his determination to stay at the Phibsboro club once this season is finished, while admitting that the financial situation is so dire that even a league win wouldn't prevent inevitable cost-cutting.

"I've got a contract until 2013. I've no intention of walking out on a club that's been good to me, that's for certain," said Fenlon.

Meanwhile, the Shamrock Rovers players were given the weekend off as they recovered from a hectic week, with their FAI Cup semi-final going to a replay before the victory over Drogheda. Manager O'Neill paid tribute to his team's resilience after emerging from a difficult spell to set up the possibility of a double.

"Sometimes it's not about good football. Sometimes, it's just about raw courage and the players showed that," said the Northern Irishman.

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