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Limerick U21 football manager accepts underage development needs attention

Limerick manager Diarmuid Sheehy
LIMERICK U-21 football manager Diarmuid Sheehy has admitted that “there is work to be done” to find new players to bolster the inter-county senior set-up.

LIMERICK U-21 football manager Diarmuid Sheehy has admitted that “there is work to be done” to find new players to bolster the inter-county senior set-up.

In the aftermath of his first season as Limerick U-21 football manager the former inter-county full back said: “from younger level up the work needs to be done”.

Sheehy’s comments came after his side were beat 3-15 to 0-8 by Cork in the Munster U-21 football championship.

The 16-point loss was inflicted with some ease by the home side in Paric Ui Rinn.

The Limerick line-up had raised some eyebrows, in particular inter-county senior player Darragh Treacy only making the substitutions list.

Sheehy defended the decision.

“The way we looked at the game, after looking at the Kerry game, we hoped maybe that the longer we could stay in the game and then we would have the back-up to bring on these lads - maybe that was wishful thinking but that’s the way we looked at the gameplan,” explained Sheehy, who was joined in the backroom team by Moss McCarthy, Kieran Dore and Brian O’Connell.

“We thought if we could stay in the game that we would be able to bring on the lads to bolster us - that’s the way we looked at it,” said Sheehy.

His side were 14/1 outsiders and by half time Cork looked every bit the 1/100 hot favourites when 3-7 to 0-6 ahead.

“The three goals in the first half were the telling factor in the game,” admitted Sheehy.

“I thought maybe in the first half when we went through that we were fouled and I don’t know how their defender didn’t get a black card for it - we were through on goal and maybe if we had stuck one away it would have been a way into the game,” he recalled of a Jason Mullins goal chance in the 11th minute.

Overall Limerick played second fiddle for long periods - with little answers to the powerful running game of Cork.

“At times we weren’t breaking the tackle going through with the ball, it was sideways we were going rather than though the tackle. Their wing backs and midfielders were runners and they were taking good lines and at times we got caught not following them. We don’t seem to try and break and tackle - we try to go through the tackle but if we are anyway stopped-up we go back rather than direct all the time. That’s something we need to work on down the line,” outlined the manager.

But he was happy his players “stuck on well”.

Sheehy is now to work with the Limerick junior side for the Munster championship against Tipperary on May 31 in the Gaelic Grounds.

“We would hope to try and keep the panel and keep working with them to progress - those lads who play a lower grade of football if we can keep with them, hopefully they will come on,” he said.

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