Loftus praises team’s character following Oscar Traynor Cup victory

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Sligo-Leitrim coach John Loftus
SLIGO-Leitrim manager John Loftus admitted that he had begun preparing for extra-time – and possibly penalties – before his charges grabbed a late result in added time.

Last Friday’s FAI Oscar Traynor Cup quarter-final between Sligo-Leitrim and Kerry looked destined to go the distance as matters were deadlocked, 1-1, with 90 minutes played.

The hosts, dominant throughout, cancelled out Kerry’s opener – Killian Sweeney’s unfortunate own goal after 53 minutes – with a header of their own, Conor Griffin’s 80th minute bullet.

But attacker Mark McGoldrick spared Sligo-Leitrim the rollercoaster of extra-time when he calmly slotted home the winner in the fourth minute of stoppage time.

“I was getting myself set up for extra-time,” said Loftus after a dramatic night at The Showgrounds.

“We deserved the win over the 90 minutes, I think we were the better side – I don’t think that they [Kerry] could argue with it – it was a great way to win it, a goal in the last minute.”

He continued: “ I thought we deserved it. But I didn’t think it was going to go for us because of the [own] goal we conceded, which was unfortunate. But, in fairness to the lads, they just kept at it, kept slogging away.”

For more reaction and round-up of the game, see this week’s Sligo Weekender newspaper – in shops now!

Alternatively, you can purchase an online edition here

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