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*A frustrated Chloe Moloney at the final whistle. 

RECORDING THEIR FIRST LOSS of the championship has disrupted the momentum of the Clare ladies footballers, intermediate boss Evan Talty has acknowledged.

In what was a very winnable encounter, Clare lost to Louth by a single point in Cusack Park on Sunday. Having lined out in the Connacht championship, they were granted entry as the only intermediate side in Munster, the Banner defeated Leitrim, Sligo and Roscommon before opening their All-Ireland campaign with a convincing victory over Down.

Manager of the intermediate side, Evan Talty was downbeat after their winning run came to a halt. “You don’t want to lose any game, there is always the danger of that mindset going in what we tried our best to not have that because you want to keep the winning run going into an All-Ireland quarter-final but our workrate was way down on what it normally is and we should have had the game out of sight in the first half but we let them in it and they took their chances in the second half”.

He added, “For us, we’ve been on a winning run of six or seven games, it didn’t matter that we were through, I wanted to keep winning, momentum is powerful and it happened us last year against Leitrim, for me it was disappointing that we didn’t have energy in how we played”.

Despite holding onto the majority of possession in the final ten minutes, Clare were unable to kick an equaliser and their cause was marred by their second half return of 0-02. “We kept carrying it into the tackle, they had fifteen behind the ball and we fed into that, ultimately turnovers cost us, we never opened them up in the second half”.

Longford await Clare in the All-Ireland quarter-finals and Talty is under no illusions that a serious improvement is warranted. “Whoever we meet in the quarter-final, if we perform like that we won’t beat anyone, it is up to us to get back to the way we were against Down and bring the level of performance we know we can bring”.

“We’re still in a quarter-final, we need to pick the heads up and go again in two weeks time, if we win that then all of this will be forgotten,” the Quilty native surmised.

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