GER Rogan admitted his team had been taught a lesson against Laois but stressed the result was not indicative of the potential that exists in his young Derry panle.
Michael Wilson reports
Victories over wicklow and Kildare have raised hopes of a potential League final but the loss of Liam Hinphey, Oisin McCloskey and captain Ruairi Convery were ruthlessly exposed by a Laois team who now lead t5he Division 2A table from Westmeath.
“Oisin (McCloskey) was missing and so too was Liam Óg (Hinphey) and big Ruairi (Convery) and that’s a big loss to such a young side,” admitted the Antrim man, “But, are Laois that much better than us? No, they’re not. Laois were beaten by three points by Westmeath and we put in what I thought was an excellent performances against Westmeath. Look, we’ll just get back on Tuesday night and see where we went wrong.
“We have 13 missing from last year’s squad, we have brought in so many young lads and, to us, it’s an achievement to be where we are in the league at the minute. I don’t think that result was reflective of where we are at as a squad but we’re well pleased with how the youngsters are getting on.
“We brought in another young lad there today – Niall Farren, only out of minors – and he’s done very, very well. There’s still an awful lot to work on but we’ve lost two big leaders in the team and, outside of their influence, it’s what else that they bring to the side as well, that maturity and organisation when they’re on the field.
“Laois a good side but so are we. We’re not 18 points worse that Laois. Based on that performance, yes we are but if you’re looking at the overall league campaign, that team went to Westmeath and lost by three points. And, anybody who was in Westmeath will tell you, that was a game that we could’ve won. So it wasn’t reflective and I don’t think it’s reflective of where we are as a team.”
Despite the 18-point deficit Rogan said it was important Derry got the opportunity to meet teams of Laois’ calibre.
“People talk about being out of your depth. So what? If you are out of your depth, you’re going to learn more playing against quality sides like that than you would against teams of lower divisions. We’re entitled to be in this division and we’ve shown that with our performances to date. It was a bad result but we’re not going to get up tight about it. What’s happened has happened and you’ll learn more about yourself from that performance there than we would have from say the game against Wicklow. We’re not going to lose the plot, it’s a learning curve.”