Corcoran heaps praise on Long ahead of Waterford tie
Article by Kieran Burke - @KieranBTS
Monday night’s Dublin derby hero and current Premier Division leading goalscorer, Dinny Corcoran last night hailed Bohemians boss Keith Long, with the Dalymount Park favorite claiming the “Gypsies” boss is overachieving and deserves “huge amounts of credit.”
With three wins from three in the top-flight this season, some pundits have been left red-faced after a season of struggle was predicted due to the loss of a number of key players from the “Bohs” dressing room during the off-season. Speaking exclusively to Between the Stripes LOI podcast last night, former Sligo striker, Corcoran made reference to the challenges his boss at Dalymount Park has faced in recent years and how the former Athlone Town chief has overcome such hurdles.
“Keith deserves a lot of credit, the last few years he’s after re-jigging the whole squad through people leaving and that’s the challenge with the bigger full-time squads, it’s hard to hold onto them. The off-seasons must be a headache for Keith, but to rebuild the whole squad, he’s overachieved these past few years and himself and Trevor Croly and the rest of the backroom staff deserve huge amounts of credit.”
As mentioned above, many pundits had tipped the Dublin club to struggle off the back of high profile departures by the likes of Shane Supple, Ian Morris and JJ Lunney. One such pesimistic pundit during the off-season was former Soccer Republic analyst, Declan “Fabio” O’Brien with Corcoran admitting he was enjoying leaving the League of Ireland legend to eat his own words with such a strong start to the campaign.
“I’m enjoying it at the moment but it’s still very early days, just three games in and teams are only starting to find their feet now, so there’s going to be big changes obviously, it’s too early to predict. Dundalk and Cork haven’t got going yet and teams are still waiting to gel, but I hope he’s eating his words at the minute and we’re not down there come the end of the season.”
With a long trip to Waterford on the cards this weekend, Bohemians will have a real opportunity to dispel any notions of a low languishing league finish this season with a win against one of last years Europa League qualifiers. The “Blues” come into this intriguing clash off the back of a difficult away assignment of their own, losing by the odd goal in five against Derry City on Monday night. With many expecting Friday’s battle at the RSC to be exactly that, a real test of attrition, all eyes may very well be on Corcoran’s former strike partner at Bohemians and current Waterford FC star, Ismahil Akinade . Well aware of what his former team-mate offers, Corcoran admitted he is glad to be at the opposite end of the pitch to Akinade and not assigned the job of marking the big target man on Friday night.
“He’s very difficult to play against, he’s quick, he’s strong, he’s athletic, he’s a nightmare for defenders so thankfully I won’t be back there (marking him), please God” said Corcoran regarding Akinade.
With Shamrock Rovers hosting a stuttering Dundalk and second placed St.Pat’s away to UCD on Friday night, Bohemians could extend their lead at the top with victory in the South-East, while a win for the hosts could see Waterford taking up a European place once more. Kick-off at the RSC is 7:45pm on Friday night.
You can catch Dinny Corcoran’s exclusive interview on last night’s Between the Stripes LOI podcast in full by using the Audioboom player below. Alternatively, you can find the show on Itunes, Spotify, RadioPublic and all your favorite podcast outlets by simply searching for Between the Stripes LOI podcast. Corcoran’s interview kicks off around fifteen minutes into the show.