Despite their defeat to Westmeath in the Tailteann Cup quarter-final on Sunday, the Carlow senior football team have certainly made strides forward in their development throughout 2022.
A youthful and inexperienced panel have had their ups and downs across the league and championship campaigns but a foundation has been set to build on heading into 2023.
One of the more senior members of the squad is the Barrowsiders stalwart Darragh Foley who spoke passionately about the need to stick together as a group of players for as long as possible.
In a wide-ranging interview following his side’s five-point defeat to their Leinster rivals, Foley touched on the potential in the panel, future for aspirations for the entire set-up and what needs to happen if Carlow are to develop from hereon in.
Foley said of the game: “The start killed us. We had too many unforced turnovers and they punished. With experience we’ll learn to kill their momentum but we are a young panel and that’ll come.
“We gave it our all and that’s all you can ask for from everyone and you can see by the crowd here today that the Carlow people are behind us.
“Westmeath are a seasoned team that have been in Leinster finals.
“We need to get out of the cycle of asking ourselves ‘will we come back next year or not.’ That won’t do anything for Carlow football and we’ll be stuck in Division 4 forever. We have to get rid of that attitude in the county and stick to the plan because we have the players to progress.
“We have the backing of the County Board which is crucial. That’s what needs to happen.
“We all need to work together for the betterment of Carlow football because we have players coming through. We need those players to aspire to play intercounty football for Carlow and think we’re building that now.”
You can listen back to the full interview on Scoreline Extra here.