New Drogheda United manager Damien Richardson praised his side’s performance after their 4-0 victory over UCD last night.
An early strike from Gavin Brennan set United on their way before a second half brace from Gary O’Neill and a strike from Cathal Brady put the gloss on United’s biggest win of the season.
The 66-year-old spoke of the importance of starting with a high tempo pre-match and he was delighted with the comprehensive manner of Drogheda’s display.
“It was an excellent performance last night, particularly in the first half when we played with a great tempo and created plenty of chances. In the second period, we probably ignored the simple aspects of the game and made things more difficult for ourselves but once we got the goals that we deserved, we ran out comfortable winners.”
United scored three goals in ten second half minutes as they hit four goals in a league match for only the second time this season and despite missing further chances to extend their lead, Richardson was pleased with the ruthlessness of his players.
“Playing with a relentless style that was one of the key features that I’ve been looking for from the squad. I want to drill into the players that when we defend, we do it with determination and a great level of concentration and the same applies when we go forward. It was very heartening the number of chances that we created. When you suddenly see players taking advantage of those and being quite clinical as the game wore on, it was probably the most uplifting part of the performance.”
This result lifts the Boynesiders seven points above the students in the relegation/promotion playoff position but despite that gap, the Dubliner is still weary of being dragged into a dogfight as the campaign nears a conclusion.
“I don’t feel that we can put any relegation fears to bed just yet. It is something that you must be very mindful of that a couple of bad results can change things dramatically so it is vital that everyone concerned keeps their eyes on the ball .As a professional football manager, all I can ask for is a committed performance week in, week out and the squad certainly gave me that tonight.”
The TV cameras will be at United Park for next week’s tantalising Louth derby against league leaders Dundalk and Richardson expects a ferocious encounter between the two rivals.
“There is no doubt in my mind that Dundalk are the best team in the league and by some considerable margin too. They are a very well balanced side with some phenomenal players that play an attractive brand of football. They will give us a clear indication as to where we stand at the moment and where our improvement needs to come from. If we can match them, which will be very difficult, it will be a pulsating derby and a game that I am very much looking forward to.”