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Harte and McGleenan in two minds about impact of mark

By Declan Bogue

The two managers shared a warm handshake before this match, but that was the only fondness on display in an uncompromising January game that saw no prisoners taken.

Obviously, the major talking point is the impact the 'mark' will make on the inter-county game. In the past, Mickey Harte has always stated his position in that it makes the referees' job harder and so it proved with matchday official Martin McNally in two minds on more than one occasion here.

"There's a lot of variables in the whole thing and I suppose the referees are trying it out for the first time too, so they are under pressure and you have to give them time to adjust," stated Harte.

"But I wish we didn't have to adjust to it at all, honestly. It's all that thing about when a player takes a mark and when does he not - when does he play on?

"It's just causes a degree of confusion that we don't need and the referees don't need. Be it as it may, that's what we have for the time being, anyway."

While Tyrone did not bring the same appetite to proceedings as Cavan, Harte was generous in his assessment of opponents that they will host at Healy Park in the crucial middle stages of the National League.

"You have to hand it to Cavan, they were the better team on the day because they got more scores than we did. They were more efficient than we were and you can look for all sorts of excuses but there are no excuses here," Harte offered.

"We created plenty in the first half, I think we had five short and four wide. And if you get no return from nine attacks it is not hard to see how you could be five down.

"We didn't take control of the game either. As I say, it was a very disjointed game and we got a point early in the second half and had another eight or 10 minutes where there was no change from our part on the scoreboard. That's a thing we have to think about and reflect on."

McGleenan has a completely different attitude to the mark, enthusing: "It will bed in over the course of the season. I think it's class!"

He added: "(referee) Martin McNally, I thought had a good game. He had a good, tough second half - it was a good Cavan-Tyrone game. There was questions asked of both teams. I thought he did a good job."

He was also beaming from the performance. "A goal in these weather conditions was worth an awful lot. It was very heavy out there. Gerry Smith's movement for that goal was superb. We made two of three great end -line saves too in the second half when Tyrone came looking for goals. Defensively we were class."

Asked about his mixed emotions in beating his home county, he looked slightly sheepish as he answered, "Och listen, I'm a Tyrone man. I'm always going to be a Tyrone man.

"Cavan has asked me to do this job. Whoever we're playing, I'm going to try and do my best with them. It doesn't matter about the opposition. We've a lot of big games coming down the road."

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