“We had a fairly strong side out but, with a few boys coming back from injury, a few that haven’t been getting a lot of minutes recently, it showed tonight that we need to get their fitness and their sharpness up. They need to get the minutes under their belt. As we’ve seen recently with players getting their chance, for instance Caolan Marron and Andy McGrory who’s come back in, when your chance comes around, you need to be sharp and have match fitness about you, to be capable of playing to your potential and to take your opportunity when it comes around.
“Tonight, that was the thing that I thought was the most obvious about our performance: our fitness and sharpness levels weren’t the same and you could see that with the likes of Dave, Simon and Kyler all coming back from injuries, Kevin’s had a niggle in his groin all season so he hasn’t played many minutes. Wee Killer hasn’t played many minutes because of the form of Rhys and Sykesy. The one person I thought that did look really sharp tonight was Fabio O’Brien; he was really good tonight, scored a good goal and, up until he got the knock on the head, he was looking really sharp and fit.
“The young lads, Conall did really well tonight and Luke, it was his first start and he hasn’t had a lot of games because he only had his clearance through over the last four or five weeks so it’ll be good for him to get a few minutes under his belt. I thought Bobby came on and did really well as did JJ and I thought James Taylor tonight was excellent. He had a lot of saves to make and he had a really, really good performance as he did in the League Cup. Those are the pleasing things. You have to take positives out of this. I want to go out and win every game we play in and I was hoping the team tonight would win the game and get the young lads the chance to play in a final but it wasn’t to be.
“You can see why Warrenpoint are sitting top of the Championship; they’re a decent team and they play some decent stuff. They haven’t really lost many players from last season: they’ve kept big Murray, they’ve brought in McMenamin and the rest are the squad from last season so they’re a good solid team. I’d expect them to go on and win the Championship based on what I’ve seen tonight. You could see that they were playing week in and week out and playing at a high tempo and it’s hard to beat playing first team matches every week for your sharpness and fitness.”