Heary pleased with second half display to win 8-0
Owen Heary was happy with how his side improved in the second half to beat Mayo League 8-0 at the Showgrounds in the First Round of the EA Sports Cup.
The game seen a hat-trick from Liam Flatley and a double from Gary Armstrong as the club’s younger players took centre stage. Seven of tonight's eleven that finished the game are from Sligo or Mayo with two more on the bench in Kevin Devaney and David Cawley.
Heary first reflected on how his side stepped up their performance in the second half: “A good win, got through to the next round, that’s the most important part. First half didn’t play anywhere near our potential so second half we came out and upped the ante. We moved the ball quicker, passed the ball quicker, closed down higher and got their rewards for their work.
"In fairness they had a couple of chances, Ryan Coulter did well in goal he managed to save a few. But we weren’t quite happy in the first half especially because we allowed them to get chances and it wasn’t long distance chances, they were in on goal a couple of times. So we re-grouped at half-time, told then what we need to be doing and we took the game to them in the second half. Young (Liam) Flatley scored a hat-trick and Oisin (Connolly) came on and done very well as well.
“I think that first half we just didn’t get to the game, we played at their tempo. We dropped our levels down and sometimes it’s difficult when you start at a lower level to get back up but credit to the team they managed to get the tempo up in the second half and get the goals. Overall first half not pleasing, second half very pleasing.”
Oisin Connolly made his Rovers debut at just 16 years of age taking his place on the pitch alongside several other products of the club’s underage structure: “It’s great because the one thing we want to do is give youth a chance. You can see there tonight we had quite a young team, Boylan, Armstrong, McManus, Flatley, Connolly and it’s great for them to get game time and get a bit of experience under their belt. The two boys didn’t look out of place when they played.”
Heary’s focus now quickly turns to this Friday and a return to SSE Airtricity League action away to Drogheda United: “We played Cork and we done quite well in that game I thought. We defended well and played at a good tempo in the second half. So we need to try and beat Drogheda on Friday and if we do that it will be a good week all round. The lads done well tonight which gives food for thought for the game. We’ll be going down there, try to get three points and move on up the table.”
Listen to Heary's post-match interview here: