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Derry Manager Brian McIvor Mounts Very Interesting Defence Of Dublin-Derry Display

Derry Manager Brian McIvor Mounts Very Interesting Defence Of Dublin-Derry Display
By Conor Neville

Derry manager Brian McIvor offered some half apologetic words after Derry's 0-8 to 0-4 loss to Dublin in the League.

The performance generated a wave of hostility which only picked up in speed after Joe Brolly's interview on Game On the following Monday.

Since Derry racked up a score of 2-15 against Cork last weekend and things have calmed down a bit, McIvor has responded in more detail to his critics.

His basic argument is that, while Derry were themselves defensive, the reason the game turned out the way it did, was because Dublin did the same. He doesn't condemn the Dubs for this, given the way things came a cropper for them in last year's semi-final.

The Dubs' formation, McIvor insisted, is why Derry had to move across the pitch in a crab-like formation for most of the match. He had this to say to the Derry Post.

The thing that annoyed me was did anybody ask why, for most of the match, we had to go across the pitch as opposed to driving forward? The reason was that Dublin had set up, by and large, the same.

I'm not pointing the finger at Dublin. They had learned last year in the All-Ireland semi-final that you cannot push up and push up and leave gaps at the back. They got exposed for that.

And while they'll not say anything, Dublin would have been pleased with the defensive part of their game. But all the fingers were pointed at Derry.

On Off The Ball tonight, Irish Examiner columnist Paddy Heaney backed up McIvor's claims and said that traditionally successful counties like Kerry and Dublin get an easy ride when they play defensively. Colm Parkinson disagreed and the pair locked horns.

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It certainly appears Dublin are playing more defensively this year - for one thing, they only conceded two goals this year - but this has manifested itself mostly against sides who set up defensively against them.

 

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