TWO away wins in six days could very easily have turned out less favourably for Cork City, but full-back Steven Beattie believes that the Rebel Army made their own luck against Dundalk and St Patrick’s Athletic.
Having beaten the Lilywhites in the President’s Cup, City led 2-0 early on against St Pat’s on Friday night before conceding two goals, only for Kieran Sadlier to score an 82nd-minute winner.
Winning is a habit which will never become tiring and Beattie feels that the more it happens, the more it’s likely to happen.
“Of course, you want to win every game,” he says.
“It’s like a morgue in there if you drop any sort of points or lose a game. That’s the mentality John instils in us, we go into every game wanting to win, that’s why we were champions last year but that’s in the past.
“We have a lot of new faces and you can see that they’re after adopting the winning mentality too, that’s only going to benefit us.”
On Friday, City were up against it for long periods as Pat’s pressed hard in the second half.
“Absolutely,” Beattie says, “it wasn’t looking too good.
“At half-time, we had a gameplan, after the red card, to regroup and keep it tight for the first ten, 15 minutes of the second half.
“Within a minute, we got a dagger and then we’re sitting in, defending for our lives. Shane Griffin makes a brilliant block, that people don’t see, to prevent us conceding a goal. The resilience to come back and win the game was brilliant.
“What a way to get a win, hopefully we can drive on now and continue that.”
Having ground out victory the previous Sunday against Dundalk, the memory of that victory was able to drive City on, according to Beattie.
“People said it was only a friendly,” he says, “but mentally, we know, we were two down to a very good Dundalk team and put four up in Oriel, that drove us on then for tonight.
“At this level, you always have to believe you have a chance of getting back into it. even when we were defending for our lives.
“I think the sending-off was about the 25th minute so we had to dig in for 65 minutes, to get three points is massive.
“At 2-0 up, we were playing very well, we were counter-attacking brilliantly and the lads looked very good going forward.
“We always knew we’d get one chance and Sads whipped in a great ball. It was great resilience but at the end of the day it’s only three points, just the start of it.”
With such a strong mentality within the team, the hope is that there will be plenty more three-point additions to their tally. Beattie thinks that City’s ability to quarry unlikely wins will also put doubts in their opponents.
“Dundalk did it for years,” he says, “you just always thought they were going to score in the last minute when they were winning the league.
“Hopefully now that’s us, that teams do have the mentality that Cork are never down, never out.
“John has it instilled in us that you never give up, no matter how much you’re losing, if you’re down to ten men, nine men, it doesn’t matter, you keep going until the final whistle and you’ll always get one chance.”