LIMERICK FC manager Pat Scully described the club’s promotion to the Premier Division after a 19-year break as a ‘great achievement.’
The Super Blues have confirmed their return to the top flight for next season as First Division champions with a game to spare. Limerick FC complete their programme of League games with a home tie against Wexford Youths at Jackman Park this Saturday evening (7.45pm).
Limerick manager Scully said: “It is a great achievement. We have improved every year, both on the pitch and off of it. Our points tally has improved each season.
“We have been very, very careful the way we have done it. (Club Chairman) Pat O’Sullivan has put a lot of money into the football club and this year he put more money into the first team, with a view to winning the League and we did that. From the first time I came here, it was a long-term project that we were looking at. The Board deserve great credit for having the patience and belief that what we were doing was right.
“Last season we just fell at the end and it would have been easy to lose that plan very quickly. But we stuck with it and the Board has seen the professional standards at the club. The number of young players coming through the club has been fantastic. A lot of hard work from everyone at the club, the supporters have played a huge part in that as well.
“Saturday night in Longford was a special, special night. It was great to see our fans, who have been 19 years waiting to get back into the Premier League - a stunning amount of time - singing and cheering. I thought the way we won the game at the end was fantastic for everyone.
“It was a great night, a really, really pleasing night. I was in the dressing room area and had a little minute to think by myself. Kieran Judge came in and we had a little hug. It was just fantastic for everyone. The players were so happy.”
Scully admitted there was pressure on the players and management team to deliver Premier Division football at the end of this season because of the high level of expectation surrounding the club.
“This season was a defining one with the plan we had. We were either going to be a success or a failure depending on what we achieved,” Scully said.
“This has been the build up a three-year plan. We stuck to it meticulously and it has worked out fantastically well.
“There is always pressure in football. I love football. It is in my blood, I love everything about it. Pressure is part and parcel of that. If you want to be successful, to win Leagues and achieves things, pressure goes hand in hand with that. There is no running away from it.
“Yes, there was pressure. There was huge expectation. That is the hardest thing to handle in football now, expectation.”
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