Clare began life in Division 2 of the Allianz National Football League with an away draw against Derry on Sunday in a game they could have easily won and lost.
Manager Colm Collins when speaking to Syl O’Connor in the moments after the game expressed his initial reaction to the result. “We’re disappointed, we thought we had it after Ciarán (Russell) got the point and we repelled them out of the square, maybe a draw was a fair result, there was honest endeavour on both sides, we have to tidy up our finishing a bit but overall you’d very proud of the lads and the way they played, coming to Celtic Park is no easy trip and when you get time to think about it, it will be a good point”.
Given the fact that Clare now have the belief that they are more than capable of beating Derry in their own backyard shows how far they have come under Collins’ reign. Knowing they should have won will stick in the back of their minds but Colm maintains that the secured point may help them as the league progresses.
“This Division is going to be very tough, there’s a lot of teams in it with points going left and right so I can’t see anyone running away with the division so I think that every point is going to be precious”.
He reserved praise for goalkeeper Joe Hayes who pulled off some vital saves to deny Derry a goal as the Lissycasey man collected a cleansheet. At the other end Colm was not so content with the shooting of his own forwards.
“Derry had chances in fairness Joe pulled off a couple of really good saves, I suppose the problem we would have with our ones is we didn’t test the goalie on a couple of occasions, it’s very important to get the shot off and you’d never know what would happen from the rebound but our finishing has to tidy up”.
Looking at the game as a whole, he was satisfied with the effort of his players and is looking forward to welcoming Down to Ennis next Sunday. “When you go on a pitch the main thing from a management point of view is that the players reflect an honest endeavour and a workrate and do their best to put a performance in and I think they did but there’s loads of stuff we’ve to improve on of course but Derry will be thinking the same way but the overall thing is you’d be happy with the way the lads performed”.