*A very pleased Colm Collins in Croke Park. Photograph: Gerald O’Neill
A delighted Colm Collins never doubted Clare’s ability to overcome Roscommon on Saturday and even when his charges found themselves five points behind inside the final five minutes he still believed that they could win the game.
“I felt we had taken our foot off the pedal after half time and invited them on to us and when you do that they do what any good team will do, come forward and put scores on the board. We reversed that towards the end and put the pressure on them and when we did that it worked out”, a clearly very happy Clare boss said shortly after steering his charges into the last eight in the 2022 All-Ireland senior football championship, the second time Clare have reached this stage of the championship under Collins’ watch.
As happened seven days earlier when overcoming Meath in the previous round, Clare substitutes played a big role in this latest win. “We got a great impact from the bench again today, lads coming on and doing well and making a great contribution,” the manager stated.
He continued, “It’s an incredible achievement to be coming out of Croke Park after a win. We are delighted and looking forward to being in the draw on Monday morning”.
Collins felt, “we probably should have been more ahead. There were a couple of mistakes with shot selection but I couldn’t really be too upset about the way the lads had played. Overall they did very well”.
Prior to the game Sky TV analysts Jim McGuinness who managed Donegal to All-Ireland honours and Tyrone’s All-Ireland winning forward Peter Canavan were loud in their praise of the Cratloe clubman and what he has achieved as Clare manager, the duo also both tipped the Rossies to prevail.
Asked about the period in the second half when Roscommon held the upperhand, Collins said “from our own point of view we should have been going at them more and asking questions but we did that towards the end and it paid off”.
He told The Clare Echo he has no preference regarding potential quarter-final opponents. “It doesn’t matter to us at this point, it’s out of our control we will be listening intently to the draw and we will take it from there”, the very happy Clare man concluded.