VIDEO: Brian Cuthbert: ‘Cork now face ultimate psychological test’

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By Peter McNamara, Fitzgerald Stadium
Cork gaffer Brian Cuthbert cut a disconsolate figure while reflecting on proceedings afterwards.

The Bishopstown clubman bemoaned the fact the Rebels ‘gifted Kerry handy scores’ in the first-half, a period at the end of which the Kingdom were 0-8 to 1-4 in the black.

Video by Eddie O’Hare

“Some of our passing was a bit sloppy in the first-half.

“And of the 0-8 they had in that half we certainly gifted them four very, very handy scores, making it easy for Bryan Sheehan which was not what we wanted to do, obviously.

“When you do that against Kerry you’re certainly making it very difficult for yourself and we certainly found it more difficult to run through them tonight but that is the nature of how it went tonight.

“The players are very disappointed because they were extremely confident of doing what we needed to do and for three-quarters of the game they had every right to be confident.

“Once their goal came, we found it hard to do the right thing with the ball even though we would have expected more of ourselves in that situation.”

That Cork failed the score for the last 26 minutes of the second half is a sobering statistic.

In fact, within their camp this week the players and management will appreciate it is unacceptable at this level. Nevertheless, at times, the Cork senior football managerial role must be one of the most thankless in the business.

The ridiculous decision to award Kerry a penalty in the drawn encounter, coupled with the fact Geaney must have thought all of his birthdays came together when the ball careered into his hands for the decisive goal last night will haunt the Rebels.

However, Cuthbert did acknowledge Kerry were the more accomplished side in the final quarter of the replay.

And now Cuthbert and his selectors are tasked with peeling their players off of the Championship canvas. Kildare are lying-in-wait for Cork next Saturday with an All-Ireland quarter-final against Dublin at stake.

“It’s six days now before we play a very good team in Kildare and it’s the ultimate test of the group, mentally,” he concluded.