Dylan O'Connell reports from St Colman's Park.
“It was a crazy… crazy week for us,” said new Dundalk manager Filippo Giovagnoli as he summed up his first week in Irish football.
“Everything happened so fast. But, as soon as the owners contacted me I was working and preparing to take over the club. I’m a person who likes to study and learn. I want to keep learning and I’m looking forward to getting stuck in, in this amazing league.”
The words came in the immediate aftermath of his first game in charge of the club which saw a stunning finish from Dane Massey and a penalty from David McMillan give Dundalk a 2-0 win over Cobh Ramblers at St. Coleman’s Park in the second round of the Extra.ie FAI Cup.
“I’m feeling really good. I really enjoyed the win. “It was a very difficult win for us, but I enjoyed that. People described what playing in the League of Ireland is like, and today was exactly what I was told. Cobh had a great game and gave us a great challenge.”
Giovagnoli also gave an update on the fitness of striker Patrick Hoban, who was supposed to start the game at St. Coleman’s Park but was replaced at the last minute by David McMillan.
“Patrick Hoban felt something in our last training session but felt better overnight. We tried to get him into the team today. He was in the warm up, but we also had McMillan ready to play on the off chance he couldn’t play. When David McMillan came on he played fantastic. He was one of the best players on the pitch.”
Before departing the picturesque East Cork venue, the Dundalk manager gave his thoughts ahead of Monday’s Europa League draw: “I’m really looking excited to the draw. I’m just hoping for a home draw.”