AFTER a 0-14 to 0-12 home loss to Clare, a somewhat shell-shocked Cork manager Ronan McCarthy admitted he was very disappointed.
The Rebels led by two at the break but couldn't kick on, instead falling to a third home loss, which ended their hopes of promotion to Division 1. Indeed if they don't beat Roscommon away next Sunday and other results go against them they could even be relegated.
“Very disappointing, the performance wasn’t as poor as the Cavan game, but again we have gone from a good performance last week and a positive win away from home and we haven’t followed it up tonight.
“That was the most disappointing about it and I couldn’t have any argument with the result really. We hung in there, they always looked dangerous to be fair to them. We possibly could have gotten a draw out of it and probably didn’t deserve it if we had.
“They had a couple of early goal chances but that could have been down to the fact we hadn’t settled into the game, but after that, we set up properly and they didn’t have anymore apart from the early ones.
“We hit the post just before half-time and that was one for us and now when you look back at it that would have been an important score and would have given us momentum going into half-time.
“But we were two points up at half-time and even though we were turning to play against the wind I thought we were well set up as we like to run with the ball anyway.
“However when we found ourselves trailing in the game it gave them a chance to set up with a lot of players behind the ball. You then have to break them down and we couldn’t do that."
After impressing away to Meath in the previous round, Cork were bottled up here, with Gary Brennan the dominant figure in midfield in the last quarter.
“When we ran the ball through them with support we did open them up on occasions, but we were never really on top. Look they beat up last year in the league and gave us a really tough game in the McGrath Cup and we got a late goal to win that.
“They are a good side and they cause people trouble and they certainly caused us plenty of it tonight.
“It’s hard to believe you would have four home games in a competition and only pick up two points, but that’s it and we now have to travel to Roscommon and pending on other results may have to get at least a point to avoid relegation,” concluded Ronan.