Conor Sweeney reflects on momentous victory over Derry

The Tipperary footballers progress to the All-Ireland quarter-final for the first time in the team's history

Conor Sweeney

Image: ©INPHO/Morgan Treacy

Conor Sweeney scored a flurry of late points to book Tipperary's first appearance in the All-Ireland football quarter-final. 

Tipperary ran out one-point winners over Derry at Breffni Park this evening and Sweeney was quick to pay tribute to his team's performance.

"It's hard to gather your thoughts straight away, but it was a savage game," he told Sky Sports after the game. "There was huge intensity to it.

"We spoke at half-time that we were a little disappointed that we had eight wides in comparison to Derry's one. We said we have to take our chances if we want to win. I think that was the difference in the end really."

He went on to highlight some of the differences between the squad's resolve this year in comparison to previous years and highlighted some of the issues that they had fallen victim to previously. 

"[Conceding leads] is something that has happened to us quite a lot over the years. We'd build up a lead and then take the foot off the pedal. When they got the [second] goal I knew we'd bring it back. We've had a good few knocks down through the years, losing players and stuff. It just goes to show the bottle in the lads. They pulled it out of the bag again to get to the quarter-final."

Sweeney also pointed out that despite the county team having lost a number of players from the panel, they had the strength in character to press on in this year's All-Ireland series.

"It was tough at the start, for any county to lose good players it's tough. And for a so-called weaker county to lose some of your best players and big men down the middle. That was always going to be difficult to fill. The lads left for their own reasons and that's fair enough. It just goes to show that the lads we have are just as capable and I'm glad the lads showed it today."