TYRONE will ‘seek’ redemption at the ‘Hyde’ this Sunday and avoid the spectre of relegation looming ever larger on the horizon, Kieran McGeary insists.
The Red Hands were left shell-shocked at the nature of their nine point canning at the hands of Mayo in Omagh last Sunday, a setback which leaves them propping up the Division One table after two rounds of matches. And as they ready themselves for a further Connacht test in the form of a trip west to tackle Roscommon this weekend, McGeary is acutely aware of the need to redress the balance.
With the mini-break kicking in after this next round of fixtures, the last thing McGeary wants is to be heading into a fortnight of inactivity with their top flight status in severe jeopardy.
“If we don’t get a win this weekend, we’ll have to address the situation because what does it become? Does it become a matter of survival or does it become a matter of pushing on? So, there is a massive emphasis being placed on this weekend’s game because I know there is going to be a lot of ones looking for our result to see where that leaves us.
“But it’s entirely up to ourselves, there’s no excuses for Sunday past apart from a lack of drive. We went out flat-footed, but credit to Mayo, they stepped up to the mark and took the bull by the horns and it’s about time that we did the same.”
The Pomeroy utility man was making his first competitive start of the season last weekend but he maintains that a lack of match sharpness and cohesion shouldn’t be used as excuses to explain the limp nature of the 2-13 to 0-10 loss to Mayo.
“There’s no excuse to be losing by nine points at home. You need to be putting a vast majority of your emphasis on those first few opening games and if you don’t do that you start feeling the pressure from a number of different angles and it’s all understandable if you’re not performing.
“We had a very tough start this year. We’ve had Kerry in Kerry and we don’t hold a great record down there, which is something we spoke about, but unfortunately they got off to a fast start and we never really counteracted that.
“Then, Mayo, they had something to prove after us beating them last year in Mayo by 12 points, but again, you don’t really look at it that way.
“I suppose, as a team performance, attitude during the match, just things weren’t good. Everything was good in the build-up to it, but we just didn’t show up on the day and nine points at home in very reasonable conditions, with a very reasonable referee, playing against a very talented team, but at the end of the day there’s absolutely no excuse for a nine point defeat.”
FULL STORY IN THURSDAY’S STRABANE CHRONICLE