Ballinamallard United manager Harry McConkey is hoping to build on his side's run to this year's Irish Cup final.

The showpiece game ended in disappointment for the Mallards as they went down 3-0 to hot favourites Crusaders at the National Stadium at Windsor Park on Saturday but he feels that ultimately the run will serve the club well in the future.

"We would love to take from this journey that we are going to attract people to the club and build the club a little bit more and we feel that this will be good for us in the long run. Also, look at the youth we have had there today, it was fantastic experience for the youngsters," he said.

The Mallards got off to the worst possible start to the game when they conceded after only six minutes to Jordan Owens and although they held firm for the remainder of the half, the contest was put beyond them as Crusaders struck twice in the early stages of the second period.

"I just think we popped our balloon, which is the one thing you don’t want to do, in both halves. In the first half you come out and you have had the visualisation, you have seen Jordan Owens so many times doing that.

"We told them at half time that this is going so quickly and it is going to be behind you before you know it. You have got to perform, you have got to show people the way we want to play and we have got to be brave on the ball and try and play. I know we went two goals down two minutes later and then three down but you could have gone five or six down to a team like that.

"I’m very, very proud of them and what they have achieved but I’m just disappointed and right after a match it is very hard to be happy with a 3-0 defeat," added McConkey.

And the Ferney Park supremo admitted that Crusaders extra quality told on the day.

"The full time training and the resources and the quality of players that they have told. I think Stevie has protected the boys well and geared themselves well for this competition. It has been an incredible run that they have had in the competition  with the teams that they have beaten and therefore I think it is no disgrace for us in the scoreline that we were beaten by against a team that has been very good against the Linfields, the Glentorans and the Ballymenas.

"We are fifth in the Championship, a wee team from Fermanagh with limited resources on the biggest stage in the country and I just wanted to show a little bit more and unfortunately we didn’t do it but you have got to give Crusaders credit," stated Harry.