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'We can’t start games like that and hope to win anything' - JBM sounds warning for Cork

The Rebels have made a habit of beginning slowly under JBM.

Jimmy Barry-Murphy at Páirc Uí Rinn.
Jimmy Barry-Murphy at Páirc Uí Rinn.
Image: Donall Farmer/INPHO

JIMMY BARRY MURPHY has urged his Cork side to stop giving opposition sides the early advantage.

The Rebels take on Waterford at Semple Stadium in a Munster SHC quarter-final replay on Sunday, having pegged back the Déise last time out.

Cork have made a habit of starting slowly in games in recent years.

“We’ve looked back on a lot of our games last year,” the Barr’s man said this week.

“[It was the case in] both All-Ireland finals and as I said immediately after the Waterford game, it’s something that’s become a problem now because we’re chasing down leads in games. It’s taken a toll on the team during the game.

“If you’ve got eight, nine, 10 points to peg back, by the time you’ve done it, it’s taken a huge toll on the players – mentally and physically. It’s certainly something we’re hoping to address on Sunday and we’ll have to if we’re going to go anywhere at all. We can’t start games like that, giving good teams leads like that and hope to win anything.”

After the drawn game, a clearly unhappy Barry-Murphy made it clear that the Leesiders did not meet the standards he expects. And the All-Ireland-winning boss says he expects better in Thurles this weekend.

“It’s a comfort that we came back to draw. It’s certainly not a comfort to think that the performance was a continuation of our league displays,” he says.

“I’ve been saying this right throughout the league as well, our form in the league was not good even though we were promoted. I am worried that we haven’t yet shown the spark that we had last year. I’m hoping that the reprieve we got the last day can focus our minds on Sunday. What we’ve seen all year is certainly below the standard that we aspire to.

“We’ve spoken about it. Like all teams, we analyse the display and different aspects of it. We spoke to a lot of individual players and I’m sure they’ve talked amongst themselves about the levels that they want to get back to.”

Alan Cadogan’s impressive debut performance was one of the positives Cork will have taken away from the drawn game.

JBM insists there’s no shame in a young forward leading the way for his more senior colleagues.

“It’s fair to say he (Alan Cadogan) was very good on the day,” says Barry-Murphy. “I wouldn’t say we were disappointed with that. It was great that that he carried the form he’d been shown all year into the championship. We’d be hoping that that a lot more of our forwards deliver a far better performance that they did the last day.

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“Eoin Cadogan played a (league) game with Douglas at the weekend. We were keen to get him a game. As it stands today, everyone is available.

“Paudie O’Sullivan played as well (for Cloyne in Cork county championship against Valley Rovers). We’re delighted with that. It’s a great boost. He played very well. I was away myself but I heard he played very well. That increases the competition for places, which is great.”

Alan Cadogan Alan Cadogan. Source: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

The Déise too had their own young headline-grabbing star. Austin Gleeson scored what will surely be remembered as one of the goals of the season when all is said and done.

“I thought Waterford were very good on the day and took the game to us. A lot of our players weren’t at the level we’d like them to be at. We were very disappointed with our performance overall. Credit to Waterford, they game with their game plan and played very well on the day. I think we were extremely lucky to get the draw.

“There’s a bit more pressure on us to look at the overall situation and see where we can improve the team. There are a number of players who are not happy with their displays and we certainly weren’t. We made a number of changes on the day, which were all quite effective I thought. I’m not claiming any great stroke of genius that we made the changes because they had to be made. We must look at the team and see where we can strengthen and do you have to at some stage make that call that do the players who have been on the bench a while, deserve a chance to play. That’s something we’re looking at for Sunday.

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