Cork U21 squad’s bond central to Cork’s progress

Cork U21 midfielder Seán White doesn’t have to think too hard about how highly he’d rate the goal he scored against Kerry in the Munster final.

Earlier this month, the Rebels triumphed 3-9 to 1-14 in Tralee, with White scoring the decisive third goal on the three-quarter mark.

Goals aren’t really the stock-in-trade for the Clonakilty man, so there aren’t many others vying for the titles of best or most important.

“I don’t know, I’d say it’s one of the only goals I’ve ever scored – I wouldn’t be shooting that much!” he laughs.

“It’s nice to get on the scoresheet when I can. I wasn’t even thinking about going for goal at the time, I was just kind of running towards the goal and everything seemed to open up for me when I got there. It was a tough game below in Tralee, thank God we managed to come through it.

“We took our goal chances when they came to us, on another night things might have gone differently and they’d have been in the situation we’re in now.”

White won man-of-the match for his efforts and has been a strong performer at midfield throughout Cork’s run to tomorrow’s All-Ireland final. With his club and college sides, he has filled a number of roles, but there was no tricky transition.

“I suppose my favourite position would still be centre-back, I like being able to look up the pitch rather than having to turn and face the ball. It did take getting used to, but it’s not like we’re kicking the ball way out and contesting one-on-ones, it’s all movement, that’s the main thing. I’m marking someone, but not as closely as I would be playing in defence, so that’s a benefit too.”

The UCC finance student forms part of a strong overall panel, with Seán Hayes and his management team using the bench to good effect. “There’s great depth and, to be fair, everyone’s good friends with each other. They kind of built that up this year and it has worked for us. Even if you go behind, you can see that the level of intensity rises together. You try to approach it the same anyway as any match, but there will be things throughout the week. You have people texting you, more people are talking about, but you still try to treat it like any other game.”

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