'Three goals are hard to beat'


Cavan’s first goal was a thunderbolt from Padraig Faulkner but the other two weren’t bad either to put it mildly.

Gerry Smith’s strike was his first major in championship football and it couldn’t have come at a better time.

“I don’t remember too much about it, I played a one-two with Cormac and thankfully it hit the back of the net, it probably gave us a bit of momentum going into the last few minutes," explained the Lavey man.

“I’m just happy out to get the win, it’s brilliant for us.

“It was just a one-two and it opened up for us. As I said, it hit the back of the net so we’re happy out again. We got three goals today, any day you get three goals, you’re going to be hard to beat.”

Cavan wanted to go for goals if they were on but they didn’t focus too heavily on that aspect of their play, he said.

“Not necessarily, at the start of the league we weren’t creating that many or scoring that many but we just said today, if you have a chance, just go for it but it wasn’t something we over-emphasised. As the game opened up, the chances presented themselves and thankfully we took the chances when they did come.”

At half-time, the Cavan camp were happy to be just two in arrears given the strength of the breeze.

“We probably were, yeah. I thought we controlled the game quite well, took our scores, Paddy was very good on the frees, very efficient. We could have been a little bit closer I thought, a couple of chances there, it could have been a draw but we couldn’t complain, we were two points down having played against the wind. We just needed to go out and do similar in the second half and thankfully we did.

“It was a good performance overall, good composure in the first half, we worked really hard against the wind, and then the game kind of opened up in the second half. We were able to kick the ball and get support runners which is a big part of our game.

“We’re just delighted to get the win, any win in the Ulster Championship is hard to come by so we’re happy out.”

Meanwhile, the other goalscorer, Paddy Lynch, who brought his tally for the league and championship to 2-55 in eight games, was a happy man.

“It’s a feeling you could get used to, it’s definitely a sweet one over the local rivals. Definitely glad to get over the line and move on to the next round.

“I probably back myself to kick frees and kick points from play. Today went well so hopefully keep up the good days,” he said when asked about his exemplary place-kicking.

“With that wind, we dropped out to the 45 because obviously we knew that Beggan has a big kick on him. We put the pressure on from the front nine and obviously we’re glad it worked. We were happy enough being too points behind with that strong of a breeze.

“Obviously there was a wee bit of nerves, I thought maybe it could have got away from us but Gerry Smith got a serious goal, just a one-two and straight through the middle and a great finish as well.

“We’ve been working hard the last two weeks and it’s always nice when it works, definitely.

“On that last goal, I think it was ‘Holla’ that got the free and I just put down the head and it was a great pass from him. Nobody was at home so I had to do the easy thing.

“I thought we held on to possession well there today, probably in league games we attacked and gave the ball away stupidly, definitely it worked well today.”

Tyrone are up next and he’s looking forward to it already.

“I can’t wait,” said the 24-year-old Crosserlough man, “can’t wait.”