Dan Fox admitted the disappointment of missing out on a bronze medal at the EuroHockey Championships will only act as motivation going into Rio 2016.
Shane O’Donoghue’s double and penalty corner goals from Alan Sothern and Eugene Magee did the damage for Ireland as they recorded a 4-2 victory to secure their first-ever European medal.
England got on the scoresheet through Harry Martin and Adam Dixon but it was not enough to turn the match in the hosts favour.
Gold meanwhile went to the Netherlands who beat Germany 6-1 in the final.
As For England, it was a particularly difficult result to swallow having had 16 shots, six short corners and 68 per cent possession over the course of their match with Ireland
As it was, it was Ireland, ranked 14 in the world, who took their chances against England, and Fox admitted credit had to go to their opponents.
“Whatever I say about us, we cannot take credit away from the Ireland side. They’ve done brilliantly this tournament,” he said.
“We’re so disappointed because we gave them corners too easily and we didn’t defend them well enough.
“On a given day, sometimes your corners fire but ours didn’t today. We had a lot of possession we couldn’t make it pay off in the final third.
“We’re really gutted how it’s gone today. It’s a difficult part of tournament hockey, playing in bronze medal matches when you were so close to playing for gold.
“We want to play our best hockey every game and we were set up to do that today, we just didn’t quite execute our skills in the final third.
“We have 11 months till Rio and this will drive us on. We’re not far off as we showed against Germany but we need to improve and hopefully this will motivate us to do that.”
© Sportsbeat 2015