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Wednesday 28 September 2016

McCabe: we owe Fenlon

Rovers stalwart aiming to put in a better display

Rovers’ longest-serving player Gary McCabe wants his side to deliver a better performance for former boss Pat Fenlon. Photo: Sportsfile
Rovers’ longest-serving player Gary McCabe wants his side to deliver a better performance for former boss Pat Fenlon. Photo: Sportsfile

From winning leagues to ground-breaking adventures in Europe, Gary McCabe has been left pondering just where it has all gone wrong for Shamrock Rovers in the wake of Pat Fenlon's sacking.

The longest-serving player at the club and veteran of their glorious Europa League run to the group stages in 2011, McCabe is hurt by where Rovers now find themselves.

"It kills me down inside, knowing where we can get to from knowing where we've been," said the 27-year-old midfielder ahead of tonight's Europa League clash with RoPS as Rovers chase a 2-0 first-leg deficit.

Experience

"We should be doing better. I'm here to pass on my experience and hopefully we can get there in the end."

And McCabe says he and his team-mates owe it to Fenlon to redeem themselves in Finland tonight.

Club coach Stephen Bradley, who doesn't hold a Pro Licence, has been granted permission by UEFA to be in caretaker charge, assisted by Glenn Cronin and player-coach Stephen McPhail.

"The players do take a lot of responsibility," said McCabe.

"The manager gets the sack at the end of the day, but it's down to the players. We haven't performed well in some matches this year. The game on Thursday wasn't a good performance.

"You saw their team, they were there for the taking and we should have done better in the game.

"We owe it to Pat to put in a better performance.

Beaten

"We know ourselves we should have beaten that team. It's down to us, it's partly our fault.

"They weren't a patch on the Odds team we played last year and we performed much better against them.

"It's now a big ask for us tonight to get two goals. But we're more than capable of doing it and we'll go all-out attack and, hopefully, get an early goal to settle the nerves.

"Getting that first goal is crucial."

Bradley may be forced into at least one change as defender David O'Connor is a doubt with a hamstring injury. Striker Danny North (knee) didn't travel.

Europa League (1st Qualifying Rd, 2nd leg): RoPS Rovaniemi (2) v Shamrock Rovers (0)

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