Rebel Paudie Kissane plotting to bring the Kingdom to ground

NO one in the Clare set up knows more about Kerry than Paudie Kissane.
As a player with Cork, he played against them at Munster championship and All-Ireland level – being par of the Cork set-up in the 2009 Munter semi-final, before tasting defeat in the All-Ireland final later in the year.
It’s against this backdrop that his counsel about the pit-falls of facing Kerry will be crucial in the Clare camp this week. Yes, Kerry may be in something of a transition phase, following a number of high profile retirements, not to mind the injuries to Colm ‘Gooch’ Cooper and more recently 2013 All Star James O’Donoghue.
“They are massive losses to any team,” admits Kissane, “but the big thing about Kerry is they have a good team no matter who they have playing for them. It’s going to be a massive hurdle for us.
“The thing we have to do is respect them but focus on our own game. You have to do that to give yourself a chance – that’s the main thing.
“We all know what good footballers they have and who those players are, but for us it’s about getting our performance to a high enough level to be competitive first and then see where we can go after that,” he adds.
Kissane, whose role as a coach has helped bring Clare to a new level during Colm Collins’ first year in charge of the team, says that a much improved performance is a must as they bid to cause what would be the biggest shock of the football year, and for many a long year for that matter.
“We were good against Waterford (in the replay), but that performance will be no where near to what is required when you play against a team like Kerry,” he says.
“As a team we are creating a lot of chances – we did that in the two games against Waterford, but we’re not going to get as many chances against Kerry, or as much possession. Definitely we have to be a lot more clinical in front of goal.
“That’s the thing we are focusing on in training. Kerry have some very good forwards and if they have space they will crucify you, so we have to try and close down the space,” he adds.
The 2010 All-Ireland winner and All Star is hopeful – a year on from playing for Cork against Clare in a Munster semi-final in Cusack Park he’ll be doing his best to plot an ambush.
“There mightn’t be a massive crowd there,” he admits, “but the thing you do is try and get the crowd on your side. The thing is to try and stick with Kerry and with a home crowd cheering you on, see what happens after that.”


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