McStay: Young Rossies still finding their feet

Roscommon joint manager Kevin McStay said that the development of a winning team is not as straightforward as some people think and that his side are still finding their feet at championship level.

  He said: “It was great to see Neil Collins coming on and doing so well – he felt that he had a point to prove and his introduction was the turning point, in my view. He felt that the management made a mistake not picking him from the start and he was superb when he came in and fair play to him.

  “In the first half we were punished so hard for every mistake we made. We had 18 turnovers, which was about double what we would be hoping for, but every time we gave away the ball we conceded a score. We had a couple of poor kick-outs that led to scores and we let in two soft goals.

  “There was only five of last year’s team that started today so that’s a big turnover of players in just a year. Everyone thinks that this is all done in straight lines and diagrams but it doesn’t work that way. We have a lot of young players just finding their feet.

  “Sligo had nine or ten players who have played in Connacht finals – and we have just four – so you have to take that into consideration too. We played some reasonable football in the first half and I thought it was harsh to be eight points down at half-time on the balance of play. But we showed great composure in the second half and we took our scores very well and we missed a few goal chances too.       

  “Senan’s goal just after half-time was crucial too. Sligo would have been hoping to hold their lead but it was gone after a few seconds and that was a boost to us. We were much more focussed today and we were ready for a battle.

  “We are in a Connacht final now and it is exactly where we wanted to be. It opens up the season for us. We are in the last 12 at worst and we have the possibility of winning the provincial championship and going to Croke Park or not, but we are in the final now and there is only one thing to do now and that’s win it. We are looking forward to the preparations for that now.”