Chiedoze Ogbene turned in a man-of-the-match display as Limerick edged an eight-goal thriller against Bray Wanderers to keep the Blues on the tails of the top 5 sides. The 20-year-old tormented the Seagulls in a new role up front, netting twice in th
Chiedoze Ogbene turned in a man-of-the-match display as Limerick edged an eight-goal thriller against Bray Wanderers to keep the Blues on the tails of the top 5 sides. The 20-year-old tormented the Seagulls in a new role up front, netting twice in the opening twenty minutes at Markets Field.
“I thought it was a great game. We prepared well though the whole week. Obviously after the loss in Finn Harps we had to regroup. In training everybody is positive. Getting the two-goal lead and then leaving them back into the game, it’s never easy but I thought the guys dug deep.”
Limerick needed a pair of late goals to win the game, something Ogbene put down to fitness “That comes from the fitness we trained really hard throughout the week and you could see the result today. It was literally who was going to blink first. I was happy that we dug deep, that we got the result.”
Joining Rodrigo Tosi up front in a 3-5-2 formation, Ogbene recognised the need to be adaptive “It’s not like I want to play up front, I prefer the wing. But the manager comes in and changes the formation you have to go with it. We’re a team here. If I have to go up front to help the team then I have to go up front!
He added “I enjoy playing up front or on the wing. Playing up front gives you a direct route towards the goal which is good.”
The Wicklow side struggled with his direct style and his undeniable pace, with the Nigerian fouled on a number of occasions, something he’s recognised is almost a complement. “Every day recovery is key, we get a good programme, goto the pool and do your stretches. I’m only 20, I can’t be stiffening up. Thanks to Joe (Gamble) and his recovery sessions I feel fitter and stronger every day. Your young coming up and you’re going to get kicked, but you learn from it. If you’re not getting kicked you’re not affecting the game. It just shows me that I’m affecting the game and causing defenders to foul me which means I’m doing the right thing going forward.”
Despite winning the FAI Cup with Cork City in 2016, he recognised the need to play regularly,
“I knew this was the club for me, after three days. I was happy here and comfortable. Unlike different clubs, Limerick is a place where you can express yourself as a youth player coming up, you don’t get that free role or change of positions”
Despite his short time in Limerick, Neil McDonald becomes the third manager to contribute to his performance, following Martin Russell and Willie Boland who had an interim spell in charge, “Neil is very focused and that’s what I like about him. Sometimes you get caught napping and he reminds you of your position. Sometimes you leak goals but that’s normal. He does chop and change shape. He’s very focused and direct as a manager and we listen to him.”
“I think we deserved it, they had more of the ball but we created the chances.”