Ahead of the Munster Quarter Final v Naomh Eoin

Here’s what’s being said in the media ahead of the Munster Quarter-Final tomorrow:


I love looking at and understanding the tactics of a game, how teams set up to attack and how to defend, and how this affect how the game is played, and how teams adapt to what’s thrown at them. So here are some of my thoughts:

  • It’s really hard to know what to make of Naomh Eoin. The standard of Junior Football in Clare hasn’t been the best when they get out into Munster. Naomh Eoin we re well beaten a few years ago by Éire Óg (Ovens) a few years ago in the Munsters, but Éire Óg are a fine side and won the intermediate county last week too. They’ll be missing one or two of their midfielders  through injury.  I think they have five minors playing.
  • In the three games Millstreet played in the county, all the teams had a lot of wides against us. Mainly due to the pressure of our backs, and being forced to shoot from long distance. But Naomh Eoin got 9 scores out of 11 attempts in the Clare final. If they have that ration again, they’ll probably sink us.
  • The Barrs set about to neutralise our attacking potential. When we tried to isolate Tadgh and Mike in the Full forward line, they left three in their full back line and their centre back rarely went beyond the 45. Essentially they played 2 defenders screening in front of their full back line … and it worked meaning it was very hard to get quick ball to the inside line, except when quick long high balls were sent into their penalty box … on the few occasions this happened, consternation insued. Naomh Eoin management were at the Barrs game and will have seen the tactics, but will they approach the game in a similar manner?
  • So having an extra man or two in midfield for much of the match we generally failed to attack with extra numbers and break through their defensive line which settled outside their 45. The extra man only started to pay dividends at the end when caution was thrown to the wind and the defenders joined the attack which helped to create loose men all over the place.
  • Mistakes: i doubt we’ll see as many unforced errors tomorrow as we saw in the county final. Nerves are the only explination I could come up with, and there was a bit of ball watching in the first 10 minutes which caused problems. Those mistakes really put us on the backfoot at times. Normally we use the ball well, have lovely quick hands, and have excellent running off the shoulder which makes for good ball retention.
  • Primary posession in the middle: Even though we had an extra man in the middle, the Barrs cleaned us out for long periods from kick outs and when primary posession was being contested. This happened for a while against Glenbower and Kilmurray as well, but in those games we seemed to adjust and gain parity, but against the Barrs it went unchecked. The Barrs looked like they had a plan to break the ball to two men waiting underneath. We continued to try to catch the ball which played into their hands.
  • We can be vulnerable at times when the opposition have a few men running through our midfield and half back lines. This was the strongest point of the barrs team, but in general we held them back.
  • Kevin Crowley is apparently injured. He’s a big loss as he can control the game from the pocket. How do you reorganise the defence ?
  • Simply put we were lucky to be still in the game against the Barrs becasue they had so many wides. We can’t allow that to happen again.
  • The weather for the match will see a good westerly breeze, with some light drizzle / rain in the morning, clearing as the day goes on to have some broken sunshine.

All said, every team throws up a different challenge, and it will be interesting to see if we will eliminate mistakes and avoid the same old pitfalls. There’s only good teams left at this stage. There’ll be a big crowd from Millstreet like in the County final when most went to the match and the town was deserted, and the roar from the crowd pushed Millstreet onto victory at the end.  Hopefully we’ll see a good game with Millstreet on the right side of the result. Come on the Sráid !!!!!

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