Heary: "We deserved 3 points."
Owen Heary felt his team should have come away from Longford with the three points but is happy with the improvement show from his side.
A superb David Cawley goal got Rovers on level terms after Longford had got one of their own through Kevin O’Connor.
“Overall I thought we deserved to get three points out of it but unfortunately we come away with one. Two superb goals, a wonder strike from O’Connor and then David Cawley came up with a wonder strike for ourselves. Disappointing not to come away with the three points but the positive that we can take is that we are coming away with four points from six from two one the road.”
He said that goalscorer David Calwey, for whom it was a first goal of the season, has been encourage to go for goal more often: “We were actually talking to him before the game and Joe Ndo said to him if the ball comes out to him on the edge of the box don’t be afraid to shoot. It was a great goal. We possibly could have had another towards the end when Raff had that header that he should have scored. And then Ledwith had a great strike that the keeper made a fantastic save from. I don’t think Brushie had too much to do bar take the ball out of the net from that wonder strike but again there’s a lot of positives in the game and we are tightening up defensively which is good.”
It was the home side who scored first but the Bit o’Red were back on terms within four minutes: “I was pleased with the character we showed to come back from a goal down. A couple of weeks gone by we probably would have dropped our heads but we are well capable of scoring goals and we know that. Tonight was no different we bounced back straight away, which was a positive, they kept their heads up. We have a lot of young players in the team and they are setting their goals high and working hard to get there.”
An injury to Ryan McManus meant that Gary Boylan moved over from right-back into the middle for this game and Heary is delighted with the Belmullet defender: “He’s a very good player, I rate him very highly. I seen him last year playing and I honestly thought he was a left full because you seen him playing with his left foot and his right foot. He’s willing to learn and that’s the big thing. He’s listening to what we are saying and listening to senior players. That boy will go far.
“I think things are coming together now slowly but surely, it’s still a work in progress. We are still getting the players to come around to the defensive way of thinking, to be sure that they do their defensive jobs as well as the attacking. At the start of the season we were probably a bit too gung-ho where we were putting too many bodies forward, maybe because of pre-season going so well. But it’s starting to get into their heads where they have to be for the defensive shape. It’s slowly but surely getting there but by no means we are the finished article, we have to go out now on Monday and get something from that game.”
Heary feels that the additions to the coaching staff of Liam O’Brien and Joseph Ndo are already having an effect: “Liam brings a lot of experience, you can see he’s upped the tempo in training. He’s got the players at it, tempo wise the games are like match games. They are starting to train the way they should play, and that’s a good thing. Joseph comes in and he gives a formation of when players are on the ball how they should express themselves, how they should play want to get on the ball. And Liam does the same. So between us all defensively we have to tighten it and then offensively that’s where Joe and Liam come in.”
In two days Rovers come up against Heary’s former club Bohemians in what should be a difficult game with Bohs enjoying a good start to the season: “I had some good years there. They are a well settled team. I’ve played with a few of the players that were there and I’ve seen them develop over the last five or six years and they’ve added in some real quality players this year. So it will be a difficult game, they are well drilled, especially defensively from the last couple of years. They know what way to play things, and I’m not putting that down to myself or anyone but they are good players and they’ve done it over the last couple of years and people have seen them develop. That’s where we want to be at the end of the season, we know exactly what needs to be done with them. But it will be a difficult game, Bohs are flying high at the moment so it’s important we try to see what bodies we have available and get players recovered and get ready for Monday’s game.”
Listen to Heary below: