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Pat Spillane Believes That Kildare Draw Will Be A 'Reality Check' For Kerry

Pat Spillane Believes That Kildare Draw Will Be A 'Reality Check' For Kerry
By Gary Connaughton Updated

The opening weekend of Division One of the National Football League was a bit of an odd one, with three of the four fixtures in the top flight ending as draws. The most surprising of those probably came in Kildare, where the home side finished on level terms with Kerry.

Of course, there was the added side plot to that game in Jack O'Connor, who left the Leinster side last year to take up the manager's role in his home county for a third time.

Kildare will no doubt be the happier of the two sides, looking very impressive at times. On the other hand, Kerry did not quite hit the heights that are now expected of them.

Speaking on RTÉ's Allianz League Sunday last night, Pat Spillane said that this fixture could come as somewhat of a 'reality check' for Kerry after they had breezed through their pre-season competition.

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It was a very enjoyable game played at championship pace for long spells.

It was a reality check for Kerry. Kerry had three turkey shoots in the McGrath Cup and there was a bit of getting carried away that they were going to sail through, but they weren't even serious matches. Kerry will always struggle on a tight pitch and Newbridge is a tight pitch.

Kerry will always lack physicality and that's one of their big problems, that physicality around the middle third. None of the half forward line today was over 5'10", their halfback line is weak, Kevin Feely when he came on at midfield, Kevin Flynn was good at midfield.

They are trying to work on defensive structure, I didn't see it much, maybe a little bit today.

Kildare on the other hand were amazingly fit, physical, aggressive, well organised. It was a really enjoyable game.

It would be easy to read too much into the first league fixture of the campaign, especially when both sides are under new management.

Oisín McConville believes that there will be a lot more to come from this Kerry team in the months ahead.

I think there is a lot more to come from Kerry, from this management team it is still early days. I didn't see any particular structure with them today.

I think that as the pitches dry up and the sods get a bit harder it will suit Kerry a lot more.

I was very impressed with Kildare today from what I seen. Kildare needed a couple of things: a structure, a manager that believed in them, and a little bit of badness. We saw all of those three things today and there is more to come from them.

I won't be writing off Kerry, I won't be falling into that trap!

Kildare will be hoping to build on this momentum when they travel to Donegal on Sunday afternoon, while Kerry will host Dublin in Tralee on Saturday evening.

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