McNamara focuses on positives despite loss to Shelbourne
LIKE her manager Rónán Collins, Cork City WFC captain Ciara McNamara was keen to accentuate the positives in light of the Leesiders’ 2-0 defeat to Shelbourne LFC in the Women’s National League last Saturday.
Goals from Noelle Murray and Malinda Allen were enough to give Shels maximum points at the AUL Complex, but in spite of the 22 points that separate them in the table, McNamara believes the gap between the two teams is beginning to narrow.
“Their experience maybe shone through a little bit. We’ve played three times this season. I know we all say it, but we are getting a lot, lot closer. Last season, season before, we would have just crumbled to be perfectly honest with you,” McNamara remarked.
“It’s good we have a lot of youth coming through and a lot of experience as well. Hopefully we can finish the season on a high, which would be good for next year.”
One of the most encouraging aspects of City’s display was the way they reacted to Murray’s 17th-minute opener. With the multi-talented Saoirse Noonan leading the line up front, they started to gain significant traction in the final-third.
While she accepts they need to avoid falling behind so early, McNamara believes the response to Murray’s goal said a lot about the character of the squad.
“The most important thing when you concede a goal is the first 10 minutes after it, because that’s when most teams concede or else we’ll score. We know once we get in and we get compact, and settle again, we can really get into a game.
“We just have to not concede so early and stuff like that. Hopefully get a bit more compact and see what we can do.”
Having claimed the FAI Women’s Cup in 2017, City will have a chance to add further silverware to their cabinet when they face Wexford Youths in the WNL Development Shield final on Sunday week (October 7).
McCarthy was already looking forward to this encounter in the moments that followed Saturday’s game, particularly the prospect of playing in the spiritual home of Cork soccer.
“When you’re playing for Cork, you want to play in Turner’s Cross. Unfortunately, we didn’t get through the semi-final of the FAI Cup this year, but look, we want to get more silverware and have something to show for our season.”
“I think the week will probably do us well. If we’ve knocks, it gives girls a break. Kind of work on little things we spotted in that match and rectify for the Wexford game,” McNamara concluded.