Collins in a positive mood in spite of the defeat by Shelbourne
DESPITE seeing his side come off second best to Shelbourne at the AUL Complex on Saturday, Cork City WFC manager Rónán Collins found plenty of cause for optimism.
While acknowledging that Shels’ clinical edge in attack was the difference in their latest Women’s National League clash, Collins couldn’t fault the industry of the Leesiders.
“We were well in it, and they did get the goals at important times. That kind of sums it up. We’ve created chances, been unlucky, but we’ve been happy with our endeavour in creating those chances. They [Shels] are going to force an error here or an error there, but we’ve done quite well,” Collins stated in the aftermath of City’s 2-0 defeat.
“We’ve definitely given ourselves a chance of coming away with something from this game. We’re disappointed that we’re saying that, but we’re really pleased that we put ourselves in that position. We need to convert them, but we’ve seen a lot of players who have stepped up and really competed today.”
As a result of Noelle Murray’s opener, City trailed by a single goal at the break. Prior to Malinda Allen doubling the Shels lead, centre-half Savannah McCarthy was narrowly off-target from a Maggie Duncliffe free-kick. Collins agreed that this was a significant moment in the tie, but also stressed that they should have posed greater questions for their opponents off set-pieces.
“It [McCarthy’s chance] IS one of those ones – all the bench is up because you see the net rattle, and then you see it roll out by the side-netting and you know it’s not in. I think one of the issues maybe is we didn’t force enough set-pieces. We’ve looked very threatening off them. That one in the second half – Savannah has attacked it really well – It’s only that few inches that side of the post.
“As I said, we did create those chances. One of them goes in and it’s a different situation, but Shels had a lot of quality coming off their bench.”
Just six days after she featured for Cork in the All-Ireland ladies football championship decider, Saoirse Noonan was a key selection in the City attack.
She was a lively presence throughout for the visitors and her general approach play drew considerable praise from Collins.
“She [Noonan] was very sharp. Her touch was extremely sharp. You can see the work she’s putting in. She’s getting herself really moving and we were probably unlucky we didn’t get a few runners off her at times, but no, I was very happy. Her touch was nailed on today,” Collins added.