'A case of what might have been' says Gorman after LSL loss   17/11/2017

Ulster Senior League manager Anthony Gorman said his side could count themselves unfortunate not to have taken at least a point from their opening FAI Intermediate Inter-League Tournament clash with Leinster.

Picture by Mike Shaugnessy

A pair of first-half goals, by Glenn Walsh and Gary Seery helped Leinster to a 2-1 win. Mark Moran brought the USL back into it but, despite dominating proceedings for most of the second half, Gorman’s men just couldn’t force an equaliser.

“It was a case of what might have been,” Gorman said.

“We had so many chances. We had good legs about us. We hit the bar, we hit the post and the ‘keeper made an unbelievable save from Lee Toland to stop us from getting a point.

“We’re really disappointed, but you couldn’t have asked for much more. The second half went how we wanted the whole game to go in terms of the tempo and the pace in the team. It’s really disappointing to come away with nothing.”

The USL were left to rue some sloppy periods in the first half as Walsh and Seery capitalised to give Leinster a foothold in the contest.

Gorman said: “I thought we started the game really well and had good possession. We looked pretty good, but we conceded a free kick that we didn’t defend really well and they scored.

“We then got caught in the counter-attack for the second. From a game we looked to be in control of, we conceded twice and that knocked us for six.”

The USL are now in an uphill battle to stay in contention for honours until Sunday, but can get back on track when they face the hosts, Connacht, tomorrow afternoon at Eamonn Deacy Park.

Gorman said: “We still have six points to play for. It’s not the start we wanted by any means. As staff and as a League, we can take a lot of positives from the performance.  

“We need favours from the other games now, but we still have to go out and get the wins ourselves and fight for the six points we have left to fight for.”

Striker Sean McCarron had to be withdrawn midway through the second half after shipping a nasty challenge on his ankle.

Gorman said: “It’s an ankle problem. I don’t know how the lad didn’t get a red card. Everyone in the ground thought it was a red. If he gave the foul, he had to give a card.

“Sean has come back in there hobbling and the ankle is strapped. It’s not as bad as first feared, but we’ll have to monitor it.”