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Cavan men have work to do ahead of last-four clash: Terry Hyland

By Declan Bogue

Published 30/05/2016

Hitting the spot: Cavan’s Martin Reilly slots home a penalty to net his side’s second goal against Armagh
Hitting the spot: Cavan’s Martin Reilly slots home a penalty to net his side’s second goal against Armagh

If Cavan manager Terry Hyland got a sniff that Paul Courtney was about to be parachuted into the Armagh goals, he wasn't sharing it with reporters.

"We probably knew that they were working on covering our high ball into the inside line and they felt they might put in a bigger keeper for breaking and smashing ball," he said.

"That's probably why they made that move. Kieran would probably tell you better than I can."

Quizzed on his reaction to the lack of bite in Armagh's challenge, the Lacken man reflected: "The first 25 minutes is always going to be a testing out period. Lads were finding their form and it was a very hot day.

"But once Gearoid (McKiernan) got opened up and Seanie (Johnston) got opened up, it meant Armagh had to come out at us and it opened up a bit for the runners.

"We felt we should be comfortable enough. The Ulster Championship can be difficult, we knew there was going to be a battle in it. At the same time, you have to know where you are at."

The Breffni boss tried to keep his praise on the general side. He said: "The penalty on our side give us the chance to kick on and keep the scoreboard ticking over. The save then, it would have been a three-point game and given them an advantage."

Hyland now has a chance to get to Cavan's first Ulster final since he was a selector under Val Andrews in 2001. They haven't beaten Tyrone since 1983, but he knows they have plenty of evidence to go on, having met Mickey Harte's men twice in the National League. They say you can learn more in defeat and Cavan have two of them to examine.

"We can go back and look at the final and try to dissect the mistakes we made. That might bring us a little bit closer," Hyland warned.

"It's Tyrone's defensive set-up that you have to try and pick. They slow you down coming out of defence, and don't mind giving away frees so they can get their sweepers back. It's something we have to work on."

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