OLDHAM boss Sean Long believes that Sunday's defeat at York Knights was a massive eye-opener for his side.

Long's charges were blown away by a cohesive Knights attack that saw almost a point a minute scored during the first half of the sides' AB Sundecks 1895 Cup quarter final.

Doubles from Will Dagger and Richie Myler - the latter marking his 400th career appearance - were the highlights, after Myles Harrison and Liam Harris had given York an early two-try lead.

"It was a massive, massive eye-opener," Long admitted to the Oldham media team.

"But a bit of ill-discipline with and without the ball, and when you've got players like Richie Myler and Will Dagger - giving them that much good ball, they're going to pull you apart."


Though without both New Zealand forward Elijah Taylor and 2023 Championship League Leaders' Shield winner Craig Kopczak due to injury, Oldham still fielded a side containing both Chapelhow brothers, ex-Knights half-back Jamie Ellis and Widnes Vikings veteran Danny Craven.

And Long conceded that his defence, at times, had made things too easy for the hosts.

"Our system is 'protect your inside shoulder, nothing goes through us'," the Super League legend explained.

"We spoke about Will Dagger, Harris, Richie Myler, no show and go's. [Jordan] Thompson, no show and go's.

"We were just turning out and it was making it too easy for them. We're going to learn from it.

"The second half, we tidied that up and I said to them 'we've got nothing to lose now, just go out and play some footy'."

Having held the scoreline to a respectable 12-6 after the interval, Long was pleased to see his side refuse to just roll over for their higher opposition.

He added: "We kept working to the end. Even in the last minute, we were still trying to score tries and we didn't give up.

"That's the sign of a team that I want to work with."