MASSIVELY IMPORTANT GAME
Saturday night's first play off game against Waterford is massively important.Should we fail to win, then the trip the following week to the RSC will be more Mount Everest than Cairn Hill. Games between Waterford and Longford Town have always been close affairs and in truth we have nothing to fear from the Blues, we even beat them in their own back yard earlier in the season. However,the last time we met, Waterford did come out on top but now we have to put that debacle firmly behind us and look to Saturday night's clash with renewed optimism and fresh confidence. We should have a few of the old guard back on duty at Flancare and hopefully they'll make the all important difference. Gary Shaw will be out for whatever remains of the season but it was encouraging to see Austin Skelly play 30 minutes against Harps on Saturday night last. His guile and vast experience could be vital.
The dream scenario for De Town is four games, resulting in promotion after the final two play off against Dundalk. At the moment, anything less is simply unthinkable.
Sport is incredibly important for the spirit, soul and confidence of its followers and for the wider public. During the wet summer, the Ireland soccer team mirrored the weather , whereas the exploits of Katie Taylor and her fellow Olympians brought a warm and welcome glow to all Irish people, home or away.
Just how Longford would welcome some sort of confident glow as we face into into an other dark winter. As the philosopher from Ballinamuck put it “ promotion would surely shorten the winter”
.There's a few extremely tough games facing Longford Town FC in the coming weeks.. They're also extremely important weeks in a host of different ways for both the club and all Longford people who love sport. You can bet your last few cents, that Tony Cousins will have the players focused on what's expected of them.
And that's where you and I come in. Every single supporter should make an effort to be in Flancare on Saturday night. We had a wonderful support when we were winning Cups for fun but that's in the past now. That's history. Saturday night represents the Club's future, it's an opportunity to raise flagging spirits locally.We really do need your support.We're asking, almost pleading for your support. Well, will you?
See you in Flancare on Saturday night, C'mon De Town.
HARPS WIN DEAD RUBBER
A goal seventeen minutes from the end by Finn Harps top sniper Kevin Mc Hugh was enough to give the hosts all three points on Saturday night last. A fairly good crowd crowd of around 400 hardy souls were in attendance on a cold night to witness what was in effect a “Dead Rubber” as the outcome couldn't influence either sides league position.
The Town had two chances in a fairly lame opening half. The first came, not from the red and black side but rather from a poor back pass which ended up in the keeper's arms after having hit the upright earlier. Clse but not close enough. Then just two minutes before the interval, the lad from Ballinalee Alan Kirby saw his well struck shot saved by the hosts's keeper.
The Town had an unfamiliar look to the side with many players being understandably rested and it looked like a daw was the likely outcome . But the man who loves to score against us, Kevin Mc Hugh changed all that with his strike. Tony Griffiths, for the visitors went close, two minutes from the end but it finished with a win for Finn Harps which left them reasonably happy for the winter.
For the tiny band of Longford Town followers, it was straight home to prepare for the visit of Waterford.
PLAYER OF THE MONTH/ SEPTEMBER
Alan Kirby is the popular winner of September's Player of the month award. It's a bit ironic that the ever reliable Kirbs, who was born in Waterford will receive his award when we take on Waterford on Saturday night. Kirbs has been a true,loyal, dedicated player for De Town and even when he strayed to play for other teams, he always made a point of attending Flancare Park when possible.One of the Town's most popular players ever, Kirbs is the worthy winner of the September award which will be presented before kick off by Brendan Turner, Supporters' Club chairperson.
PLAYER OF THE SEASON
At this stage, we hope that our season will last into November with two games against Co Louth opposition. So who knows who will yet emerge as heroes in the games that lie ahead ? But no matter what the the future holds, it's time to start thinking of your nominations for our Player of the Season and Goal of the season. Both of these awards are traditionally presented at our end of season event, but that too is on ice for the moment. Still though, get your thinking caps on and keep your critical eye in sharp focus for the next four games for our annual coveted awards.
BUS TO WATERFORD
Section O have organised a bus to part two of the First Division play offs and word has it that it's already full. But don't despair because Liam Healion will also be organising a bus on behalf of the Supporters' Club. Last time we had a luxury coach and we travelled the motorway route via Naas which was an outstanding success. We still managed to be back home before 1am which was excellent considering the length of the journey and the later, more awkward kick off time down there.Bank holiday week-end? You'd be mad to drive, give Liam a shout on 087 9141926 to book your seat. But do so before Wednesday evening.
Fanzines are a welcome part and parcel of most clubs ever now and then. We haven't had one on sale now for a long while but all that comes to an end on Saturday night when you can support “ There's only one F in Longford”. Section 0 have been busy at choir practice all season but now they turn their talented attention to witty writing, caustic comments and outrageous observations.You can buy their magazine as you enter Flancare and all proceeds are going to a worthy cause...sponsoring a player for the 2013 Premiership season. Later on, they hope to host a match of Golden Oldies V De Nu Lads, all Section O heads naturally (Stephen Kenny and Trapattoni being mentioned as available managers).
CAR BOOT SALE
Bank Holiday Monday October 29th is our final Car Boot Sale of the season and one not to be missed. All season our Car Boot Sales have been wonderfully successful and well attended by both sellers and buyers but it's the Halloween one which has traditionally been the biggest and best. If you're searching for a needle or even a haystack, they'll be available on Bank Holiday Monday and at a bargain price too. Some people travel to Munich and Prague for the winter market atmosphere, but if you're clever, you'll have better bargains and more craic just out the road at Flancare, Monday October 29th 10am-3pm but do come early to bag a bargain.
Following his outstanding success last time out and his willingness to become more involved, Marty Stapleton will be making a welcome return to these notes for the next two weeks at least. That on top of a daily commute of over 160 miles, that's real dedication. The question remains...how is that there's no chant from Section O dedicated to the one and only Marty.
Congratulations to our neighbours up the road, Sligo Rovers on their magnificent and dramatic win on Saturday afternoon last ensuring them being crowned League Champions. We could only envy the buzz up there as we drove through after our game against Finn Harps. Hopefully we'll be seeing the bit o red and the red and black in Flancare next season on a regular competitive basis.