Limerick Under-17 assistant manager Gary Manning feels his team are “developing well” in what is a “work-in-progress”, as they aim to build on a positive performance last weekend when they welcome Bray Wanderers to Hogan Park in the National League on Sunday afternoon (kick-off 2pm).
The young Shannonsiders had gained momentum, through a draw and victory, going into their Munster Derby against Cork City and they were on course for another positive result until the hosts grabbed a late winner at Bishopstown.
Limerick had taken the lead in that game through the in-form Shane ‘Georgie’ Fletcher. And while they ultimately fell to defeat, Manning believes they are going in the right direction.
“I thought it was a good performance – one of the best we’ve put out this year so far,” Gary told LimerickFC.ie.
“The result wasn’t great but I think the lads did themselves proud. It’s heartbreaking to lose that way but they shouldn’t have their heads down after that performance.
“I definitely think we deserved a draw at least. It’s the rub of the green – you could see with their second goal, a half-an-inch to the left and it’s out for a goal-kick instead. It wasn’t to be.
“We had our chances too; we didn’t put them away. We’ll learn again and we move on. The team is starting to gel and they are understanding each other a lot better. Again, it’s a work-in-progress.
“They’re developing and they’re developing well. With more time together, more matches and more training, we’ll be in a very positive position come the end of the year I think.”
Captain Kevin Fitzgerald (pictured) also feels the team are showing “improvements”, with the former Killavilla youngster enjoying his time in the National League.
“It was an okay performance,” Kevin said on their display in Cork. “We went long-ball for a lot of it, but I thought we grafted it out for about an hour until they got the goal – they kicked on from that.
“I thought they were getting through our midfield very easily and we probably didn’t defend as well as we should have. In the end, you feel it was a poor result but when you look over the performance, it wasn’t too bad.
“The lads are putting the hard graft in that’s needed and you can see improvements. I feel I’m getting better every week. I’ve definitely come on from the first performance. It’s a big opportunity so I’m hoping to kick on.”
Admission is €5; Under-16s go free. Come along and get behind our young players!
Preview Date: Saturday 12 September 2015