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  • Soccer

Local Soccer seasons curtailed

Saturday, 30th May, 2020 12:11pm
Local Soccer seasons curtailed

Nenagh AFC will retain their Limerick Premier Division status. PHOTO: ODHRAN DUCIE

Local Soccer seasons curtailed

Nenagh AFC will retain their Limerick Premier Division status. PHOTO: ODHRAN DUCIE

 

By Shane Brophy

 

There were contrasting reactions from Nenagh AFC and Newport Town AFC following the decision by the Limerick District League to cancel the remainder of the 2019/2020 season.

The decision by the Limerick League was one of a number relating to domestic soccer last week, including the cancellation of the remainder of the schoolchildren’s league seasons including the North Tipperary Schoolchildren’s Football League (NTSFL), as well the prestigious Kennedy and Gaynor Cups for under 14 boys and girls.

Nenagh AFC certainly benefitted from the cancellation of the remainder of the Limerick Premier League season as they sat fourth from bottom of the table, five points above the relegation zone with ten games to go.

However, junior ‘A’ team manager Ruairi Walshe was disappointed that they didn’t get a chance to build on a decent run of form prior to the season being brought to an abrupt halt in March due to the coronavirus outbreak.

“There were parts of the season where I wish they had called it off earlier,” he admitted.

“Byy the time we turned things around and won our last two games and rebuilt, it feels like there is a little unfinished business with the season.”

However, he is happy to have that bit of certainty for the players who can now power down before refocusing for the new season which is provisionally pencilled in for 16 October.

“It is the right decision,” Walshe added.

“There was too much difficulty in trying to figure out how to get back and what are the right things to do or not. Now we know where we stand and build towards getting some new players and encouraging guys that were on the fence to come back next year. It’s a good time to tie lads down because they are actually missing soccer.”

Nenagh AFC’s relief at securing their top division status is in contrast to Newport Town who were hoping to join them in the premier league when they lay in second place in the Premier ‘A’ League, two points off the top with two games in hand. However, with no promotion or relegation as part of the season cancellation, it’s a case of what could have been for the Mulcair men.

“We were in a great position to get promoted but in terms of the bigger picture going forward it was probably the right thing to do,” admitted junior ‘A’ team manager Marc Barry.

“We had nine games left and it was a four-horse race. It would have ended up probably as a two-horse race as we all had to play each other. 

“We were in a great position as we had four games coming up that we would expect to win going into the last five games against the teams around us which would turn into cup finals. 

“It’s disappointing from that aspect but in terms of the bigger picture the safety of the club is more important.”

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