McEleney Hails Squad Character
There was late drama on Friday evening as Dundalk FC were 1-0 winners over Cork City at Oriel Park.
Georgie Kelly headed home the winner with 12 minutes to go to send the home crowd into raptures and the Lilywhites 10 points clear at the top of the table.
Speaking to dundalkfc.com after the win, Patrick McEleney felt his side deserved the win and he was delighted that one chance was enough.
“We dominated the game on Friday. We needed that one chance at the end to get the job done. It took a while to get there but we did and we were happy to get it. We created a few chances and they were hard to break down,” he said.
“I felt that we were on top for the whole game and deserved to be in front. They tried to kill the game and we knew that they would do that, we knew we had to be patient. We had hoped to score more but we were only able to get the one goal and that will do for us.
“It’s all about the three points and we got those so we are over the moon.”
It was a tense night at Oriel, although the Lilywhites never looked like conceding with the back five rarely threatened.
But with chances at a premium, it was imperative that the strength of the squad shone through and McEleney was full of praise for his teammates’ ability to get the job done, despite Cork’s resilience.
“We aren’t conceding many and that is giving us a real platform to go win matches at the other end. Obviously we have had a good few weeks and have been able to go on a great run in the league and cups so that is pleasing for us,” said the Derryman.
“We are looking to score as many as we can and, even when we aren’t playing well, we are staying in games. It’s testament to how good the squad are and there’s great character in the dressing room. We are able to keep winning.
“We have just been taking it one game at a time and hopefully we can keep it going over the next few weeks.”
There is no time to rest, all the same, with attention now switching to the Extra.ie FAI Cup quarter-final with Waterford at the RSC tomorrow (Monday) night.
The champions are also the reigning cup holders and, as they head into an important week, there is an intent among the squad to retain the trophy.
McEleney is looking forward to that challenge, but is expecting a tough game against the Blues.
“We are looking forward to Waterford now on Monday. It’s going to be a difficult game for us. It’s a Cup game so anything can happen and we haven’t had it easy in Waterford before and we know that it’s going to be difficult for us to go down there,” said the 26 year-old.
“It’s a cup quarter-final so we want to get to another semi-final. It’s never going to be easy and we know the task ahead but we are ready for it, we are in good form and we want to go and win the game.”