‘A bit of retribution’- Keenan

IT MIGHT have been a frustrating campaign on a personal level for Louth Captain Paddy Keenan, given his injuries, but the St Patricks midfielder was delighted with the end to the season and the crucial victory over Meath on Easter Sunday.

IT MIGHT have been a frustrating campaign on a personal level for Louth Captain Paddy Keenan, given his injuries, but the St Patricks midfielder was delighted with the end to the season and the crucial victory over Meath on Easter Sunday.

“It’s a better result than when we usually play Meath for sure, but honestly we’re delighted with it, we played very well in the first half and not so bad in the second half.”

Keenan knew that after the strong first half it was vital to reduce Meath’s scoring chances in order to secure the win.

“I guess it was a case of just keeping the score (for Meath) down in the second half and keep ticking over.

The prize on Sunday was another year at the top table of Division two football and the Louth Captain is certain his side can improve even more in the next few seasons.

“It ‘s the level we think we’re able to play at. Earlier on in the league when we got beaten we didn’t think we were overrun by any teams and I think we can operate at this level.

“So hopefully we can establish ourselves at this level for a couple of years and maybe push on for Division One after a few years.”

The key to Sunday’s victory was the great first half performance and Keenan and Louth knew it was going to be essential to build a goo early platform.

“We weren’t coming in to just represent ourselves, we were coming in to win the game. It’s basically a championship game and you can’t come into it by just dipping your toe into the water, you just have to go at it as hard as you can.

“Today we were winning breaks and we struggled to do that throughout the league this season.”

The man from Lordship also alluded to Meath’s mentality before the game and how it may have impacted the result.

“Maybe their confidence was a bit fragile after losing four in a row. So we said we’d attack them as hard as we could. We needed that start and we just kept the foot on the pedal after that.”

Ultimately the victory condemned Meath to Division Three football next year and Keenan felt a certain satisfaction in that fact.

“It definitely does (make it sweeter), but at the end of the day we just have to worry about ourselves. We’re just happy enough to stay up. But it’s a bit of retribution on one hand.”

With the league season over, all eyes shift to the Championship and the opening game against fellow Division Two survivors Westmeath, however The Louth Captain knows the performance today will boost them ahead of that clash.

“There was times like today, when the backs were against the wall and we would have lost these types of games. But this was a game where if we were one ahead or two ahead we kept going right at them.”

david@dundalkdemocrat.ie