LEAGUE OF IRELAND PLAYER OF THE WEEK
DINNY CORCORAN| BOHEMIANS
It was the latter which Dinny Corcoran feels was the catalyst for his match-winning display on Friday evening at a sun-kissed Carlisle Grounds. The Bohemians frontman has endured a frustrating 24 months as more often or not he has found himself watching from the bench but struck a double as the Seagulls were shot down.
"I think the change of management has galvanised the team. Everybody's looking at it as a fresh start and I'm no different. I think I will benefit from the change of management. I was delighted to start on Friday after being left out against Dundalk but Owen [Heary] installed confidence in me and that makes a big difference," Corcoran told Goal. Indeed, his quick-fire double proved to be the difference between the sides in what was described by many as a 'relegation six-pointer' and he hopes his return to the score-sheet provides him with the impetus to fire Bohemians up the table and to safety.
"Bray are in a similar situation to ourselves so we all knew it was a huge game in which we needed to get the three points. It was a great performance by the whole side and everybody did what was asked of them brilliantly," explained the 24-year-old. "I was obviously delighted to score twice but the victory was the main thing and there's now a strong belief we can get out of trouble with Owen in charge."
The striker re-signed for Bohemians only a couple of weeks ago and was Callaghan's last signing before he parted company with the club and admitted there was no hesitation in coming back to Dalymount Park.
"I really enjoyed my time at Dalymount last season and as soon as I got in touch with Aaron and Owen a few weeks ago, I was desperate to come back. It's a huge club with great fans," he said.
The Donabate-born forward marked his first start for the club with an eye-catching display, while his brace was a major factor in him beating off stiff competition from Shelbourne's Lee Murtagh among others to land this week's award, it was not the only reason. With less than 200 minutes under his belt this campaign, most players would be devoid of confidence and lose their match sharpness which is pivotal especially as a striker.
However from the first whistle, Corcoran was a man possessed and worked tirelessly for his side. He may not have got many touches of the ball in the opposition box until the 79th minute but that is the mark of a great goal-scorer. He showed great technique to clinically fire home Karl Moore's low-cross to finally break 10-man Bray's resistance before sealing the win with another fine finish from the edge of the area.
Bohemians are now just two points from safety with ten league games left and Corcoran is extremely confident he and his team mates can get the Gypsies out of trouble while admits caretaker boss Owen Heary is the man to lead the survival charge. "I genuinely believe Owen is the man to lead us to safety. His knowledge of the game is unbelievable and he has the utmost respect from everybody at the club. I think our great performance on Friday was down to his hard work in training during the week. He had a game plan and it worked perfectly," said the former UCD man.
His goal-scoring record may not reflect his ability to find the net but Corcoran is now aiming for a strong finish to the season on both a personal and collective level. "Personally, my target for the rest of the season is to play as many games as possible," he said. "Train hard and help the club climb the table. And of course, as a striker, score as many goals in the process."
Bohemians welcome Drogheda United to Dalymount Park this Friday before facing fellow strugglers UCD and Shelbourne and Corcoran knows these are the games which will determine their fate.
"We'll be looking to get something out of every game between now and the end of the season but the games against UCD and Shels are obviously going to be vital. It's going to be difficult to maintain that level of performance but with the squad we have, we're definitely capable of beating anybody on our day," he concluded.
There is no doubt that if Corcoran begins to fire on all cylinders and replicates the form in a red and black striped jersey that linked him to a move across the water a couple of years ago, then Bohemians will retain their Premier Division status come October.