Stephen Bradley gave this update on team news ahead of Friday’s match vs Limerick:
I thought we ran out comfortable winners in the end and deservedly so. We should have been one or two goals ahead before we scored but I thought the performance in the second half was good. It’s a tricky place to go. It was about us respecting it after the Dundalk game, it was a quick turnaround after that so when you put all that into it, it was a good win.
We knew we had to follow up the win during the week with a win out in Bray. If we didn’t do that there was no point in going up to Dundalk and winning. We felt that as a group and our performance showed that. They’re tricky games after a big game two days previously.
Bray had two chances but no matter who you are you’re always going to get chances against you at any level. Whatever form they’re in, that’s football.
Dan Carr was excellent for the first goal. He’d nowhere to go and then Dan does what he does. He twisted the defender in about three yards of space and before you know it Ronan has put it in the back of the net. It was a great finish too because we’ve seen that so many times when it’s pulled back, players slash at it and lean back and it goes over the bar. It was really clever and a really calm decision in the final third which is what we needed at that point.
Dylan Watts has been very good since he’s come in. He’s added a different dimension to us and he’s starting to show people what a good player he is. He’ll only get better, fitter and stronger. I don’t think we’ve seen the best of him yet. We won’t see that until next year but I think he’s shown signs of his quality.
Up in Dundalk and Bray, Brandon Miele looked like he was getting back to himself. He worked really hard for the team and then showed some clever movements in the final third. The goal is typical Brandon, he stands up the full back, shifts a yard left or right and it’s in the net. That’s when he’s at his best and it’s no coincidence that it’s come off the back of working hard for the team.
He just needs to stay focused on what he does well. When he plays at that level his game just comes naturally to him. He’s playing at a really high level of intensity and that’s proven to be the case in the last two games.
We’ve always known that Waterford would drop points and we’d gain points. It was just about concentrating on what we were doing and working hard. I think the players deserve massive credit for how they’ve been the last two or three months in terms of how far we were off Waterford and Europe, the turnaround. They worked hard and got the results.
The goal difference [advantage] is really important for us, it’s something we’ve looked at, to concede less and obviously score more. This year we’re doing well in that area but we need to keep going and tomorrow night is a chance to add to that. But we need to make sure that we’re fully focused and ready for Limerick.
We have to keep going. There’s a lot of big games left starting with tomorrow so it’s going to be an interesting run in. We’ll keep focused and keep working hard.
I’m not sure what to expect. We had them watched last week and they were beaten quite comfortably in the end by Dundalk. I’m not sure what way they’ll come and approach it but we’ve to be right mentally and respect Limerick and be ready to go and play. No matter what they bring, whether they’re at the top of their game or low on confidence, it doesn’t matter, we’ve got to bring our game.
We did well down in their place with two wins. In Tallaght it was 1-0 until the last four or five minutes and the goal they scored we should have saved.
Luke Byrne and Dave McAllister will be out for the rest of the season. Luke had a recurrence of the injury and won’t feature again this year. Sean Boyd is training so we’re hoping to have him back in the team next week. Trevor Clarke is flying. He’s back running and doing a lot of pitch work. The problem is trying to hold Trevor back. He wants to be in the starting XI tomorrow. The problem is putting the reigns on him and making sure we don’t cut any corners. But he’s well ahead of schedule, he’s back running the last three weeks so he’s doing really well. He could play next month but I don’t think we should do that. We need to be careful and understand that he’s a big player for us, our young player of the year last season and we’ve missed him and Graham Burke. We’ve got to look at next year for Trevor and make sure he’s ready.
We had a couple with the Ireland Under 16s and a few with the 17s and obviously Aaron Bolger and Brandon Kavanagh with the 19s and Ethan Boyle with the 21s. It shows the quality of young players we have at the club and what’s coming through. We just have to be patient with them and make sure we push them at the right times. I think it shows the good work being done behind the scenes, the amount of really good young players we have in the club.