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Dublin: 1°C Thursday 6 May 2021

We're not great with the favourites' tag, says Westmeath boss Bealin

Westmeath manager Paul Bealin thinks the qualifier draw with Cavan suits his team.

Paul Bealin is looking forward to the challenge.
Paul Bealin is looking forward to the challenge.
Image: Cathal Noonan/INPHO

CONSIDERING HIS TEAM have failed to win a league or championship game this year, drawing Cavan in the All-Ireland qualifiers surely wasn’t the best outcome for Paul Bealin’s team?

Not according to the man himself. The Westmeath manager thinks his team performs better as underdogs.

“We’re not great with the favourites’ tag,” the former Wexford and Carlow manager explained.

“It is a tough draw but for me you know, Cavan are a very reputable team and it would be very good to beat them. Our lads won’t find it difficult to motivate themselves.”

A dejected David McCormack Westmeath have had a torrid 2014, and they've now lost the likes of David McCormack too. Source: Cathal Noonan/INPHO

Westmeath are facing the prospect of a winless league and championship campaign if they can’t muster a win against Cavan tomorrow (throw-in 3pm). They lost all seven of their Division 1 league games, as well as their championship opener against Louth last month.

Since that defeat they’ve also lost the likes of Alan Giles to a cruciate ligament injury, and David McCormack and John Egan who opted to spend their summer in the US (although McCormack was ruled out of the Cavan clash nonetheless with a broken nose and cheekbone.)

The lads know it’s a really difficult draw and we need to be on our game to beat them so in terms of motivating themselves that won’t be a problem.

A dejected Denis Glennon Dennis Glennon will be vital if Westmeath want to avoid a whitewash this year. Source: Cathal Noonan/INPHO

“If we were playing a weaker team, and that’s no disrespect to the teams that I call weaker, but sometimes you find it hard to motivate yourself.” 

Last year Cavan reached the All-Ireland quarter finals, losing by six points to Kerry. This year they gained promotion to Division 2 of the league as well as winning their fourth consecutive Ulster U21 championship.

The former Dublin footballer though is confident his team will finally reflect the experience gained from competing in Division 1 and meet the challenge Cavan present later today.

“I do think both teams are capable of winning on the day and if we perform to our ability I think we have a chance.”

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