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PLAYER INTERVIEW: David O’Sullivan

Mon Aug 21st 2017

Andrew Dempsey got talking with last week’s hat trick hero in the Midlands “El Clasico” and club legend Davy O’Sullivan ahead of this week’s FAI Cup Second Round cup game away to Bangor Celtic.

With yourself being Longford Town’s record goalscorer and being with the club since 2013 being through both the highs and lows together, how does all the adulation from the fans feel like to have?

“It’s always nice to get any sort of praise, and since I arrived at the club the fans have been full of it for me, through both the highs and the lows so it’s been great! I am always chuffed with the amount of adulation received from the fans, it keeps me going! I make sure not to get to carried away with it though as I know there will always be low points in this game”

Obviously you struggled with injury for a while this year, how difficult was it to get over your injury struggles?

“It’s been a very tough season for me, It was a very complex injury and the longest time I’ve been sidelined since joining Longford. The toughest part of being injured is watching both the training and matches, knowing you can’t be involved, knowing you can’t make any impact on the team’s performances. Its lonely at times as you are doing a lot of training/rehab in the gym on your own while the team are training. I’ve worked very hard and the staff at the club have been brilliant ensuring that I could return before the end of the season. I’m delighted to be back training properly and back on the pitch, long may it last!”

What’s the mood been like in the camp on the back of two fantastic wins?

“The mood in the camp has been great since Neale came in. He has us playing a completely different style of football and the atmosphere around the squad has improved because of it. The 2 wins in the last 2 weeks have been brilliant and are hopefully the start of a good run. With the league pretty much sown up by Waterford it was important for us to beat Sligo and keep our season going, so that was brilliant. It was also important to get the win on Saturday against Athlone to lead us into the cup game this weekend. All in all the mood in the camp is very good at the moment”

Before the Sligo win could you have foreseen a performance similar to that in the games prior to it?

“Before the Sligo game, I knew we were due a big result or two. We have a squad of players that are capable of playing some very good football and I think we showed that in the Sligo game. Our league form hasn’t been good enough, we as players have to take responsibility for that and in turn we’ve disappointed a lot of fans so it was important to get that win and give them something to cheer about while also keeping the clubs season alive!”

With the FAI Cup in full swing at the moment, do you have any special personal memories from playing in the cup?

“The FAI Cup is great, I love being involved in it so I was delighted when I found out I would be fit just in time for the Sligo game. There are always upsets and the draw can be nice to you as well so we always go out with that mentality, I think that showed in the team’s performance against Sligo, every single player gave their all for that game! The run we had in it two years ago when we got to the semi final will always be special, but my debut in the competition is probably the most special memory, where I managed to score a hat trick against Pike Rovers in a 4-0 win”

What are your thoughts ahead of the game away to Bangor Celtic?

“The game on Friday is going to be very tricky, I have played Bangor Celtic before during my time with Wicklow Rovers. The pitch is very big and we don’t know much about them. They have nothing to lose with all the pressure being on us. I am looking forward to it and I’m sure we will bring a decent crowd to cheer us on. We know it’s not going to be an easy game by any means and will prepare well this week in training”

Have you got any goals that you would like to achieve between now and the end of the season, both personally and collectively?

“Collectively, while I know there’s only a handful of games left we’d like to go the rest of the season unbeaten in the league and go on a good cup run. We also want to show the fans what we are capable of as a squad and that we are better than what we have showed at times this season. Personally, my main goal since getting injured was to work hard and get back on the pitch. Now that I have achieved that I’d like to cement my place in the starting eleven and score as many goals as I can between now and the end of the season.”

David O’Sullivan breaks the record for the fastest hat-trick!

Mon Aug 21st 2017

It’s now official…..David O’Sullivan has broken the club record for the fastest hat trick in a game.

Following exhaustive research over almost three days, Martin Stapleton, club archivist and historian, can confirm that Sully’s stunning three goals in ten minutes (3 mins – 13 mins) beat the previous record holder by a full two minutes.

Back in 2008, Darren McKenna scored a hat trick but it took him all of 12 minutes. The game was the first of the season and was against Sporting Fingal.

The rapid fire hat trick was scored on Saturday 19th August 2017 against Athlone Town.

A huge thank you to Martin Stapleton who spent countless hours working on the research before arriving at his conclusive outcome.

A big thanks and heartiest congratulations to Sully on being De Town’s hat trick supremo.



Supporters’ Club Notes (20/08/2017)

Sun Aug 20th 2017

THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN

We didn’t think it could get any better than our fantastic 4-2 win over Sligo Rovers a week ago but scoring seven magnificent goals certainly felt like it. Once again, we had some perfect weather and the pitch was looking in top class condition. Despite a tiny following from our visitors, we had an other very good crowd in attendance. Once again Section O added greatly to the atmosphere with their songs, chants and good humoured taunts. Martin Stapleton will be trawling through the archives to see when we last scored seven but for the vast majority of Saturday night’s attendance, this was a glorious first. We’ve had enough bleak nights during the season so this one was savoured. Three up within twelve minutes courtesy of a super Sully show, we could have gone in at half time leading by five. Despite conceding one just after the break, the hapless Igor Labuts had to pick the ball out his net four more times before the ref’s final whistle ended his misery. Tony Ghee has an excellent match report on LTFC.ie, but just for the record the record breaking goal scorers were David O Sullivan x3, Karl Chambers x2 with Daniel O’Reilly and Kealan Dillon one each. Eleven goals scored in our last two home games…as Van Morrison might have said “ There’ll be nights like this.”

SUPER SULLY SHOW

Cork City have lost their goal machine Seanie Maguire but we have held on to ours. Just back from a long (and first ever) injury absence Davy O’Sullivan certainly made an immediate and historical impact on the game against the struggling Athlone outfit. He bagged his hat trick on the 59th second of the 12th minute which surely must be the fastest ever hat trick in the history of the club – if not the league. No doubt those who keep an eye on such things will have the correct facts later in the week. But to make matters even more spectacularly outrageous , it was his 3rd hat trick this season against the same opposition. Surely a feat which will never be repeated. While his stunning scoring feat brought unbridled joy to all Town supporters, his post match patience endeared him to a host of parents and younger supporters. Instead of disappearing down the tunnel to enjoy the dressing room adulation and banter, Sully stayed back until every young boy and girl had their photo taken with him. His scoring prowess has made him a legendary figure within the club but his willingness to spend time with the youngsters is something that’s simply priceless. The Super Sully Show deserves national sporting recognition but we’re not holding our breaths.

THE FENN FACTOR

Since arriving at the City Calling Stadium, our new manager Neale Fenn has been making quite an impression. While some are impressed with his choice of sharp suits, for others it’s his ability to endear himself with the supporters. Even when results have gone against us, he’s willing to stop and chat and pose for photos and always with a broad smile. Some have even compared his social skills to the present Dundalk manager. And that’s saying something. But he also has the players playing differently and seems to have instilled a strong bond and self belief. At one stage early on, there was a lot of back play which added a much stress amongst older supporters with dodgy hearts. But for the moment, at any rate, he seems to have abandoned that for a more direct style, which in turn has reduced stress levels in the stand. What is pleasing a lot too is his willingness to give the local boys a run. To date Tristan Noack-Hofmann, Aodh Dervin and Dan Beya have benefited from this approach. Long may it all last.

SPARE A THOUGHT

Whilst we left the City Calling Stadium on cloud 99 on Saturday night, spare a thought for Athlone Town. For a long time now there has been a fierce rivalry between the clubs and the love lost wouldn’t amount to much. But former Longford Town player Etanda Nkololo explained a few things to some local supporters who knew him well when he sported the red and black. Some of his team mates had gone to Taiwan to play in a Students’ competition and others failed to turn up on the night. We expected to see some more former Longford Town players make an appearance for the opposition but they simply didn’t show. On top of that there seems to be a growing unrest between the supporters and management ( again ). Roddy Collins had only two players keeping their bench warm. It must have a cool place to watch the game from. It’s a great pity to see any LOI club experiencing difficulties, even Athlone Town FC.

AVRIL’S ARTISTRY

Avril Gilchriest is our Supporters’ Club chairperson but she’s so much more than that. Affable Avril is busy keeping us all on our collective toes , organising half time games and ball boys and then serving teas and coffees in the Clubhouse. But if you think that’s enough for one superwoman, it’s not enough for our Avril. Last week, she was hard at work preparing a collection of articles and photographs from our promotion in 2014 and which graced the Clubhouse last Saturday night. The positive reaction to the display was a testament to her hard work, passion and enthusiasm for the club. Now, if only we could clone Avril.

CUP GAME

This Friday night we travel to Dublin to face Bangor Celtic in round 2 of the FAI Cup. The game will be played at the Iveagh Grounds, Crumlin which is the home of St Jame’s Gate. It’s a name and venue which will resonate with older supporters and indeed Guinness drinkers. Bangor scored three goals in seeing off a spirited Everton side in the first round and won’t be any pushover for De Town. Banana skins don’t come any slippier than this , so hopefully all the squad will be wearing the correct cogs on Friday night.

50 / 50 WINNER

The winner of last week’s 50/50 draw was Pete Donnelly, Newport, Legan. Pete won €350. Remember the more people who enter the draw, the bigger the prize.

PLAYER OF THE MONTH / AUGUST

For many of our younger supporters, the end of August means early risings, the welcome return to exciting classrooms and fun homework but for some others it means picking the August Player of the Month. Although, we still have one game to go, it has been an exceptional month and we wait with bated breath to see who our winner will be. So far, there are as many nominees as there are players. It’s going to be a tough decision. The presentation will be made at our first home game in September by a member of the Supporters’ Club drawn by lottery.

MATCH REPORT: Hat-trick of Hat-tricks for O’Sullivan earns joint record win for Longford

Sun Aug 20th 2017

Match report by Tony Ghee

Longford Town equalled their record league victory with a thumping 7-1 win over Athlone Town at the City Calling Stadium last night. The win matches the 6-0 home victory over Shamrock Rovers in May, 2014, and was richly deserved as David O’Sullivan’s third hat-trick of the season against Athlone, a double from Karl Chambers, and a goal each from Kealan Dillon and Daniel O’Reilly secured this emphatic triumph infront of the biggest league crowd of the season at the City Calling Stadium.

O’Sullivan scored his hat-trick inside 13 minutes with the first arriving as early as the 3rd minute. Kelly’s perfectly weighted defence-splitting pass put in the Longford striker and he fired a low diagonal shot into the bottom right corner.

Five minutes later, O’Sullivan headed home a Kelly corner at the near post, and in the 13th minute O’Sullivan’s awareness allowed him to beat the Athlone offside trap as he ran onto a long clearance before calmly shooting past Labuts into the Athlone net.

Remarkably, this was O’Sullivan’s third hat-trick of the 2017 season against Athlone, and the club’s fourth, as current Athlone Town striker Enda Curran also scored a hat-trick against Athlone when he wore the ‘Red and Black’ earlier in the season.

The home side could have been much further ahead at the interval as they had several other chances to add to O’Sullivan’s hat-trick. In the 11th minute, O’Reilly’s powerful header from a Kelly corner was magnificently tipped over by Labuts. A twenty-five yard effort from Kelly went narrowly wide, and a clever Kelly cut-back from the end-line picked out midfielder Verdon who shot wide from a good position.

Athlone briefly got back into the contest two minutes after the restart when Gaffey’s deflected shot from the edge of the box nestled in the Longford net.

The ‘Red and Black’ restored their three goal cushion just before the hour mark when Kelly’s corner was headed home from a tight angle at the back post by centre-half O’Reilly, and Don Cowan almost scored number five on 68 minutes but his shot was cleared off the line by Athlone captain Dragos.

The home side did score a fifth goal on 76 minutes as Chambers pounced to score on the rebound after O’Sullivan’s effort was initially blocked. Substitute Dillon made it 6-1 on 81 minutes with a stunning twenty-five yard volley, and two minutes after that it was 7-1. Dillon and Hofmann combined to set up Chambers whose deflected shot rattled the Athlone net.

Longford Town finished the match with four players on the team who have come up through the underage system. Noack-Hofmann and Chambers both started, while Dervan and Beya came on as substitutes in the 58th and 74th minutes respectively.

Longford Town: Brady, Chambers, Haverty, O’Reilly, Noack-Hofmann, Cowan, Verdon, Zambra, Kehoe, O’Sullivan, Kelly.
Substitutes: Dervin for Zambra (58 minutes), Dillon for Kelly (64 minutes), Beya for Kehoe (74 minutes).

Athlone Town: Labuts, McCartan, Folan, Dragos, McGrane, Walsh, Carmondy, Spelman, Gaffey, Nkololo, Layng.
Substitute: Arebiyi-Atoki for Walsh (72 minutes).

Referee: Tomas Connolly.

SSE Airtricity League First Division

0 - 0
Tolka Park

Shelbourne v Longford Town

1 - 3
City Calling Stadium

Longford Town v Cobh Ramblers

0 - 3
Athlone Town Stadium

Athlone Town v Longford Town

0 - 2
City Calling Stadium

Longford Town v Cabinteely

2 - 0
UCD Bowl

UCD v Longford Town

0 - 0
City Calling Stadium

Longford Town v Waterford

0 - 0
Ferrycarrig Park

Wexford FC v Longford Town

3 - 1
City Calling Stadium

Longford Town v Shelbourne

2 - 0
St. Colman's Park

Cobh Ramblers v Longford Town

3 - 1
City Calling Stadium

Longford Town v Athlone Town

0 - 0
Stradbrook

Cabinteely v Longford Town

0 - 1
City Calling Stadium

Longford Town v UCD

1 - 0
R.S.C.

Waterford v Longford Town

5 - 0
City Calling Stadium

Longford Town v Wexford FC

0 - 0
Tolka Park

Shelbourne v Longford Town

2 - 1
City Calling Stadium

Longford Town v Cobh Ramblers

2 - 2
Athlone Town Stadium

Athlone Town v Longford Town

1 - 0
City Calling Stadium

Longford Town v Cabinteely

0 - 0
UCD Bowl

UCD v Longford Town

0 - 1
City Calling Stadium

Longford Town v Waterford

1 - 2
Ferrycarrig Park

Wexford FC v Longford Town

1 - 3
City Calling Stadium

Longford Town v Shelbourne

2 - 0
St. Colman's Park

Cobh Ramblers v Longford Town

7 - 1
City Calling Stadium

Longford Town v Athlone Town

7:45 pm
Stradbrook

Cabinteely v Longford Town

7:30 pm
City Calling Stadium

Longford Town v UCD

7:45 pm
R.S.C.

Waterford v Longford Town

7:45 pm
City Calling Stadium

Longford Town v Wexford FC

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