Shane Stapleton spoke to Eddie Brennan about Laois’ 2-31 to 0-23 defeat to Dublin at Croke Park on Saturday night.
Eddie Brennan accepts that he has work to do to bring Laois up to the elite level.
The Kilkenny native had an exceptional first season in charge of the O’Moore County, but his second championship campaign began in chastening fashion against Dublin on Saturday.
Having beaten the Dubs in last year’s All-Ireland preliminary quarter-final, Laois lost by 2-31 to 0-23 in this Leinster quarter-final.
They have a couple of weeks to recover before entering what promises to be a tough draw in the qualifiers.
“Unfortunately with matches, we often see that — the scoreline doesn’t lie at times,” Brennan says of the 14-point loss to Dublin.
“We were well beaten and it’s about what we do next. That’s the process.
“When you’re trying to make that step up, we have to look at it… it was much talked about it, but that was last year, we’re up at the highest level so you have to go out of your comfort zone yet again.
“You have to go that extra yard, push for those extra gains. It’s like an athletics runner getting down to a certain time on a mile — to get that last few little bits is the difference.
“The quality opposition, there’s only little bits between them and that’s where it’s at.
“You can make big gains at the start, and then it’s the little gains — where you’re willing to go to look for those additional bits.
“That’s what it is for us, we have to roll up our sleeves and get ready for the next day.”
Brennan explains the lack of atmosphere in the stadium is having an effect on the fare, but was certainly making no excuses for the Laois performance.
“It’s tricky. Three weeks ago, we got the green light in the club situation, the county final went below (called off by the GAA) and we had three weeks to work with them.
“We played two matches in that time and you’re just trying to get them up to match speed, and it can be difficult to get that from internal matches.
“You need to be playing top opposition to get up to that level. It’s a narrow window but it’s the same for everyone.
“You make do, drive on, and make the best of it. We have two, maybe three weeks and we drive on.
“The process is the same, we see where we can improve and prepare for whoever is coming down the line.”
📮 Sign up to the OurGame newsletter — a daily email reminder of our latest videos, articles, quizzes and more.
Don’t forget to subscribe to the OurGame YouTube page for live streams and more.