Heary disappointed by Pat's loss
Owen Heary wasn’t happy with how his side played against St. Pat’s on Friday night at Richmond Park.
The Saints ran out 3-0 winners with Aaron Greene scoring twice and Chris Forrester getting a third late in the game for the FAI Cup holders.
“I thought we were very poor, all round. There seemed to be a fear factor playing against them and I don’t know why that is because we put in some good performances over the last couple of weeks and then to throw it away playing Pat’s. We stood off them and allowed them to pass and they punish you which is what they done and they took their chances well. We didn’t create enough, we didn’t get enough passion, we didn’t get in their faces and that’s disappointing.
“I wasn’t happy with the defending tonight. I’m not talking about the back four I’m talking about the team defending in general, we allowed the ball go into the box too easy. We stood off players and let them cross and then we don’t pick up players in the box. Even the last goal sums it up, we get pushed off the ball and he runs through and no-one closes him down and he hits a striker from 20 or 25 yards and puts it in the net. Disappointing that Aaron Greene ran the show tonight because we worked on stuff over the last couple of days how to play against Pat’s but we didn’t stick to the game plan and we get punished for it.”
At 1-0 down Rovers came very close to levelling. Nielsen and Ward combined well on the left making a chance for David Cawley to shoot but keeper Conor O’Malley did very well to get a hand on the ball forcing it onto the crossbar: “It could’ve been but in fairness to the keeper he pulled off a fantastic save. You can see how hard Pat’s worked defensively, they are very good on the ball but they get a lot of bodies behind the ball and work extremely hard to stop the ball going into the net which we didn’t do tonight.”
John Russell was forced to miss the game with an ankle injury and Heary felt his presence was missed: “It was disappointing. He took a knock against Longford and then he played against Bohs when his ankle was swollen up but tonight he couldn’t make it. It’s disappointing because we don’t have a like-for-like midfielder to go in. We had to play Keith Ward in there and Steven Beattie and they’re not midfielders. John is an experienced player. But that’s the squad, that’s the way it goes you get these knocks and you have to try and fill in and do the job but we didn’t do that tonight.”
Heary made a double change on the hour bring Raff Cretaro and Gary Armstrong into the game and he liked the impact they made: “I thought Gary did very well when he came on, he’s a very good player and we are trying to give him more game time. We want to play him when we are winning games because he will be able to score the breakaway goals but when he came on he was very good. He wants to get on the ball and his movement is good. He’s put himself in the frame to be starting games.”
Rovers have eight days until playing a game when Limerick visit the Showgrounds on Saturday night to conclude the first series of games: “It’s a massive game, every game is massive but it’s important as it’s the last game in this series of games. We need to go and win that game. We have eight days to reflect on this and get them ready. So we will get them in in the morning and get working on things.”
Listen to Heary's interview below: