ANYONE standing outside the Newcastle West dressing room after last Sunday’s drawn county final would be left in no doubt how much they want to end their 20-year famine.
Manager Mike Quilligan wasn’t happy with his side’s performance and his players were left in no doubt as to what was needed for this Friday’s replay.
Back in 2004, Newcastle West didn’t produce any quality in the replay of the county final and Quilligan is anxious that doesn’t happen again.
“We should come back three or four steps higher than that the next day if we expect to do anything. We got more than we deserved today,” said the Newcastle West manager.
“You will win no county final on that performance and you wouldn’t deserve to - hopefully that game will stand to them - well we can’t play any worse!” said Quilligan.
“You are always disappointed when you draw a game but at the end of the day we didn’t play well enough to win that game - I thought we played atrocious to be honest. We played for about 20-minutes of that game - for about 40-minutes of that game we were atrocious and it can be seen quite plainly,” explained Quilligan.
He added: “I thought we played absolute rubbish - I think to be honest, we were lucky to get a draw. We are extremely lucky to have a second bite of the cherry when you play that badly. The other way of looking at it is that we played that badly and came out with a draw”.
“I think Drom will feel very disappointed that they didn’t put that game away - genuinely I thought on the day they deserved to win. Five of our fellas played well and 10 played badly.”
But still an improvement on the final loss of the last year to Monaleen?
“If we went out onto the field and stood in a bunch of 15 we would have played better than last year,” replied the impassioned manager.
Quilligan was happy with the start of his side, but puzzled as to why his players stopped hurting Dromcollogher-Broadford.
“Its always the plan to get early scores,” he said.
“If our forward line gets ball they will hurt you but for some reason we stopped kicking ball to our forward line and they were doing piles of damage - it beggars belief but these things happen,” said Quilligan.
“Scoring always matters but at the end of the day we weren’t playing well enough. We were dead on our feet for some reason.”
Initially the replay was set for this Saturday, but Newcastle West were granted a change of 24-hours as wing forward Shay Lyons gets married this Saturday.
With very little time for any training with the five day turnaround, Quilligan is hoping his charges can rise to the challenge.
“I am delighted we have another shot at it - the short turn around might suit us,” said the manager, who has newly appointed Limerick minor football manager Gerry O’Sullivan among his back room team.