Tony McGahan had no excuses for Munster as his four-year tenure as director of coaching came to an end last night with a heavy defeat by Ospreys in the RaboDirect Pro12 semi-final.
Munster were blown away by a rampant Welsh side, shipping five tries to one in a 45-10 defeat at the Liberty Stadium in Swansea.
“It was a terrific start, but I thought we were second best in all areas there this evening,” McGahan said.
“I thought Ospreys were tremendous, with turnover ball, set-piece, I thought their turnover work was exemplary. Add to that with their defence, I thought it was a complete performance by a very good side.”
McGahan, though, backed the young players who he has blooded in transitioning the Munster squad into a new era, to profit from the bitter experience of this defeat.
“It’s disappointing for everyone leaving, a few players, a few staff leaving as well and it was going to finish at some stage but to be finished on a scoreline like that is disappointing for all concerned.
“But I think there’s a lot to look forward to. You’ve got a huge group of young men there who have tasted finals for the first time, both in Heineken Cup and now in this semi-final and they’ve come up short.
“If you look back through all the good sides that come through that, there’s a process to go through. There is that hurt, that scarring that goes with that and I think these young men will go forward with that.
“They’ll carry that like the ‘06 and ‘08 sides. It’s part of the process, it’s painful, it hurts but it will give them plenty of steel and understanding of what it’s like at the top end. I think there’s a lot to look forward to.
“This will burn, there will be a lot of question marks and a lot of barbs thrown but that’s fine. The previous groups dealt with that and these young men will too.”
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