Tipperary hurling manager Eamon O’Shea paid little attention to the negativity that surrounded his side in advance of their crucial Allianz League win over Dublin at Semple Stadium on Sunday.
The victory saw the Premier County clinch a place in the Division 1 quarter-finals, while the Dubs must now face a relegation play-off.
O’Shea’s troops came into Sunday’s match on the back of three consecutive defeats, leaving some observers to claim that the team were regressing.
However, the Tipp boss revealed to RTÉ that such analysis did not play on the minds of his squad ahead of the Thurles encounter.
He said: “You can't think about things like that. I work with the lads and try to improve their performance.
"My philosophy in my working life and in sport is to try and work as hard as I can and to get the team to do likewise.
“We trained really hard this last week and the core belief in the group is really strong.”
O’Shea, however, did admit that his week were a little edgy in recent games.
He added: “There was a little lack of confidence there in terms of wanting to do better and getting a rhythm in our play, but the win over Dublin is a real boost to the squad and I’m looking forward to the next training session.
“I believe really strongly and have absolute confidence in the team. I'll admit we're no world beaters just yet, but we're definitely on the right road.”
"My philosophy in my working life and in sport is to try and work as hard as I can and to get the team to do likewise" - Eamon O'Shea
Reflecting further on the points gained against Dublin, O’Shea was aware that his side had to win by three points.
“I knew we had to win by three, but I wasn’t sure how things were going between Kilkenny and Waterford.
We got there in the end. After the first 10 to 15 minutes our performance was very good.
"It was a rip-roaring game where Dublin certainly played their part. They looked like they were going to run us ragged at times but we got to grips with the game and I’m delighted with the result."
Tipperary will now face Munster rivals Cork in the quarter-finals on Sunday next.