Longford manager Glenn Ryan stressed just how important the win over Limerick in the first round of the All-Ireland Qualifiers was.
Speaking to the Leader after the game at Glennon Brothers Pearse Park on Saturday evening last the Longford supremo said: “This was different; this was more than just trying to get a win. It was a lot more than that. The lads worked hard; probably harder than they have done all year. That in some way might tell a little story as they had a lot to fight for.”
Ryan felt the victory was just reward for the effort the players have put in all season despite going months without a win. “Everything was against them and they deserve huge credit for that. They have stuck it out all year and it shows the respect they have for their county, club and team-mates. I’m delighted they got the opportunity to get a win.”
Glenn went on to say: “I hope it’s not underestimated what they have done in the last few weeks. To a man these players have shown great commitment to try and put things right. It wasn’t easy but they did it and we are now moving on. They were hungry and it was great to see it.”
Ryan was delighted with how his side performed: “It was something we tried to work on. We knew after the game against Limerick last year that they would pack out the defence and we knew we needed to be composed. We showed that and that’s hard to do when you are chasing a win for as long as we have.”
It was a good team display with U-21 player Barry O’Farrell making his senior championship debut. The Carrickedmond clubman put in a performance that his manager was happy with: “He was brilliant as were all the lads. It was a great debut for Barry. It goes to show there are players out there who want to wear the jersey and wear it with pride.”