Moloney admitted his side had learned from playing a Kerry 15 which set up defensively: “We were happy with some aspects of our play, particularly how we finished over the last 15-20 minutes. I think the way Kerry set up caused us some problems in terms of trying to break them down.
“Their goalkeeper did very well and there are things we needed to brush up on as well.
“We conceded too many frees in the first half in particular and we also conceded too much space by dropping our half backline too deep, especially when they had men withdrawn.
“So they were probably the key learning points for the team on the day.”
Yesterday’s win over Kerry was the start of a hectic four games in 10 days but the Clare boss is not complaining: “That’s a big challenge for us at the moment and we lost two more guys today, so a combination of injuries and the loss of our Ballyea contingent make it difficult.
“It is a difficult schedule but it is still better going on the challenge match circuit because these games are much more competitive and much more structured.”
Moloney was complimentary about the strides Kerry are making, describing them as “very very impressive. “
“We played Kerry I would say four years ago at U-21 level and look at the standard now, the way they played today, some of the players are excellent.
“I was very impressed at the strides that they have made, by some of their score taking. They have converted to using a short game but there ball handling was very good. Physically they measured up, they have some powerful guys so I was very impressed.”
Kerry boss Fintan O’Connor was pleased that Kerry are making progress: “I suppose you are never really satisfied when you lose but I am satisfied the effort was really good and we pushed ourselves harder for longer than we did last week.
“That’s a good kind of benchmark this time of year.”
In fact Clare found Kerry difficult to break down in the opening half and the sides were locked on 0-10 apiece five minutes before the interval but 1-1 from midfielder Kevin Hehir and a fourth free from the unerring David Reidy saw Clare retire 1-12 to 0-11 in front.
But Clare, with Podge Collins scoring their second goal in the 56th minute, gave themselves a cushion only for Mikey Boyle to score a solo goal and just leave five between the sides with ten minutes left.
Clare’s superior skill and fitness told as Kerry tired in the final ten, being outscored 0-8 to 0-1, with David Reidy brought his tally to 0-10 and subs Peter Duggan even had the luxury of blazing a penalty over the bar.
Kerry can also thank their keeper Martin Stackpoole for some outstanding saves, denying Aron Shanagher two certain goals with point blank saves.
D Reidy (0-10, 8 frees, 1’65), P Collins (1-3), K Hehir (1-1), P Duggan (0-2, 1 free, 1 pen), C McInerney (0-2), S Morey, J McCarthy, C Galvin, C Malone, A Cunningham and A Shanagher (0-1 each).
S Nolan (0-7, 6 frees, 1 ’65), M Boyle (1-0), J Egan and J Conway (0-2 each), P Kelly, P O’Connor, T Casey, and P Boyle (0-1 each).
M Stackpoole; S Weir, R Horgan, B Murphy; J Buckley, P Kelly, D Dineen; P O’Connor, T Casey; P Boyle, D Collins, M Boyle; J Egan, S Nolan, J Conway.
B Lyons for R Horgan (50), J O’Connor for J Buckley (50), F Horgan for T Casey (54), J Griffin for J Egan (61), P Lucid for P Boyle (66).
A Fahy; E Quirke, D Fitzgerald, S Morey; J McCarthy, C Cleary, B Bugler; C Galvin, K Hehir; C Malone, P Collins, A Cunningham; D Reidy, A Shanagher, C McInerney.
P Duggan for C McInerney (44), S Golden for K Hehir (56), C O’Connell for P Collins (63), C Dillon for B Bugler (65), S McNamara for E Quirke (65).
Jason Mullins (Limerick)