We must improve for semi-final - Downey

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Foreglen manager Paddy Downey admitted his side had been poor during the first half of Sunday’s Ulster Club Championship victory over Naomh Muire in Celtic Park.

Three points in the last minute of the first half put the gloss on a opening half which had been totally dominated by the visitors who should had been further ahead.

“The points we got just before half-time settled us a bit and gave us that little bit of light,” explained Downey, “Two points down going in at half-time after the way we had played, I would have taken that 20 minutes in because we were off the pace. We weren’t competing, we were losing 60/40 balls in our favour; I don’t know whether the legs were heavy but half-time couldn’t come quick enough to get them in, sit them down and have a chat.

“Second half we were a better team. The boys went level after a couple of minutes and then went four points up and probably should have been able to kill them game but credit to Naomh Muire, they came back at us, got it back to all square and we eventually got those late boys to win it but there wasn’t three points between those teams, not on our performance.”

Downey admitted the Naomh Muire’s midfield had bossed proceedings and said he would be looking for an improvement in this week’s Division Two Final against Greenlough.

“It is something that was addressed at half-time. Breaking ball is all about position. It’s nothing to do with fitness, its to do with desire to win the ball and positioning yourself correctly.

“In the second half we were better, but still not perfect. I don’t know whether the heads were in the wrong place or something. Any game in Ulster, you are playing Championship winning teams. You are playing teams that have a right to be there; teams that have won their County Championships. You can’t take anyone lightly and those Naomh Muire boys played the shirts off their backs as did our boys in the second half and came out with the win.

“We have a tough schedule, a very, very tough schedule between the league semi-final and final, Under 21s, preliminary round in ulster, quarter-final in Ulster but it beats watching soaps on TV!”