Stephen Bradley gives his final team news update of the season ahead of Friday’s finale away v Sligo Rovers:
Last Friday’s match v Waterford F.C. (3-1 win):
It was great to get the win and get third place. I thought we played really well and deserved the win in the end. We could have won by a couple more, we were very good. We played with a really high tempo and that’s been a feature of our game in the last number of months. When we do that we’re really dangerous so we’re pleased with our play in and out of possession and hopefully we’ll continue that tomorrow.
We’ve been keeping clean sheets but it’s more than just a back four and a goalkeeper. Our central midfield has been excellent, the players in front of them have been giving them protection. That’s all added up to a lot of clean sheets and it gives us a platform to go and play our attacking football.
[The disallowed goal] was a poor decision because Dylan Watts is at least two yards onside but fortunately for us it didn’t hurt us in any way. We went again. Dan Carr showed really good feet for his goal. He could have slashed it with his left foot but he was patient. His feet are really good in tight areas and it allows him to shift the ball like he did and it was a good finish in the end.
We were disappointed to concede, it was something we spoke about before the game and at half time, how we wanted a clean sheet. We were on a good run. It was a good header but I felt we should have done more to stop the cross. But we still won the game.
It was great for Sean Boyd to score and I think you could see how happy the group was for him, the players on the pitch and the bench. Because we’ve all seen how hard it has been for Sean in terms of coming back and breaking down. That’s been happening for the best part of two seasons. Sean has been growing a lot in the last while and that’s had a major impact on his body. He hasn’t been able to get right. But he’s been trying to get himself ready to help the team win games and we’ve all seen how much he’s put into that. When he scored everyone was delighted for him.
I’m delighted for Lee Grace and Gavin Bazunu [Winning Player of the Year and Young Player of the Year]. I think both of them were deserved. Lee has been outstanding since we brought him in, he’s just getting better and better. And what Gavin did by coming into the team at such a young age was remarkable. It’s great to see the two of them get awarded.
Sligo Rovers match:
The Sligo team going forward can cause anyone problems. I’ve watched them a few times this season and I’ve come away thinking that they’ve been in a lot of games that they’ve lost by narrow margins. Their attacking players cause the opposition a lot of problems and tomorrow will be no different when they’re on the ball. They’ve some good players and they’ll look to cause us issues.
We want to go to the Showgrounds and win, we want to end the season with a win and keep up our good form. We know Sligo will come out and want to end their season on a high, considering they’re at home. It’s going to be a tough one but we’re playing well and full of confidence.
We’ll have a look at it today [featuring different players from the squad] and we’ll decide what’s best. We have a few players who have been high on yellow cards [and could risk missing 2019 opening game] as well so we’ve speaking about that too and we’ll take it into consideration and weigh everything up.
We should have Sean Kavanagh back from injury but Aaron Greene is still struggling a bit. Pico Lopes has had an operation. He’s played the last two weeks with a couple of broken fingers so we had to get that operated on yesterday, he’s out.