AFTER seeing his Cork City exit the FAI Cup — they lost on penalties — Colin Healy felt his side were better on the night than the Premier Division St Patrick’s Athletic.
It appeared that St Pat’s had snatched victory, when Chris Forrester had given the Dublin side the lead from the penalty spot, but Healy was pleased with the character his players showed to bring the game to extra time and penalties.
“It’s tough to take,” Healy said. “The boys were brilliant. Our levels were quite high. And even when we went one down, we showed character to get back into the game.
“When it goes to penalties, it can go either way, and, unfortunately, it didn’t go our way.
“We were the better side the whole game. We were the better side. We had better chances. We didn’t take our chances. They got a penalty, but the lads showed great character to get back into the game.
“We were still going in extra time. We had a very good shape without the ball. We know Pat’s: They are a good footballing side, they would have a lot of possession of the ball, but we had a good shape, and we knew we had the pace up top to catch them, and it could have been a different result if everything went right.”
Healy opted to go with an attacking formation against Pat’s and the City manager praised the way his players carried out his instructions. He was delighted how they limited Pat’s and he had little complaint with the referee’s decision to award the Dublin side a penalty.
“We worked on it during the week,” Healy said. “The shape was brilliant. We went with 4-4-2. Probably a different shape than we went against Sligo. Their work rate was brilliant. That’s what is expected, and they were brilliant. They made it difficult for Pat’s to break us down, and they got their goal from a penalty. I thought it was a penalty.
“We kept going and we are getting better and better. The lads are working really, really hard. They are taking on the information, but it’s still a hard one to take, especially with the performance that we gave. I thought we were probably the better team.”
Healy spoke of the excellent atmosphere the fans created at Turner’s Cross and believes it is the best ground for football. He was also delighted with the performance of Cork captain, Cian Coleman.
It was a great atmosphere, and it always is down here. It’s the best place to play your football.
"There were 900 fans, but you would have probably thought there were two or three thousand. It is the best place and, I would imagine, if you asked Pat’s where do they want to play, and they will say Cork City. It’s a brilliant stadium, and our players feed off of that, as well.
"It was good for the younger boys to experience that, as well, because, going forward, it’s good learning for them, as well. It was typical of Cian Coleman. He has been excellent all year... but the whole lot of them were brilliant.”
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