Limerick boss hopes Anfield ‘Reds’ will return

LIMERICK FC Chairman, Pat O’Sullivan is hoping the club’s successful friendly with a Liverpool XI at Jackman Park this week can pave the way for the Anfield giants’ first team to play a glamour fixture at Thomond Park in the near future.

LIMERICK FC Chairman, Pat O’Sullivan is hoping the club’s successful friendly with a Liverpool XI at Jackman Park this week can pave the way for the Anfield giants’ first team to play a glamour fixture at Thomond Park in the near future.

Battling Limerick FC secured a 1-1 draw with a Liverpool XI - including several players with first team experience - before 2,000 enthusiastic supporters. Limerick had led 1-0 at half-time, thanks to a smashing goal from their Kilcornan striker, Garry Sheahan.

Afterwards Limerick FC Chairman, O’Sullivan hailed the success of Liverpool’s trip to the city. The visiting squad, which comprised of a mix of first team, academy and reserve team members, held a training session at Carew Park FC grounds as well as making potentially significant visits to the University of Limerick and Thomond Park during their three-day visit.

Pat O’Sullivan said: “After the training session in Carew Park on Sunday, they stayed around and took photographs and signed autographs and replica kids for the kids which was lovely.

“We took them to UL to show them the facilities there. We also took them to Thomond Park too and so when they return to Liverpool, they will be able to tell the club about the lovely facilities we have in Limerick and hopefully bring over their senior team. Everyone is very happy.

“The coaches were very pleasant to deal with the players were too. They were very happy with the reception they received here.

“We would love to organise a friendly featuring Liverpool FCs first team. We will always be looking to bring back something else to Limerick. We hope we can.

“You could see what this visit has meant to so many people. After the match itself, the players were delighted to sign autographs and have their photographs taken with the young supporters. The supporters enjoyed their evening. It beats sitting at home watching a computer or a television, doesn’t it?

“I was very pleased with how the game went (on Monday night). We had a great crowd in. The football was good. It went off very well and that is thanks to an awful lot of hard work by a lot of people.”

Limerick FC had hoped to organise a lucrative friendly with Spanish giants Barcelona at Thomond Park in the summer of 2010.

However, the FAI refused to sanction the game. After initially citing fixture chaos, the FAI eventually informed Limerick the game could not go ahead because they had signed an agreement with a third party which gave them the rights to any friendly game with a capacity in excess of 15,000. Limerick were unsatisfied with the manner in which that was communicated.

An independent arbitrator was subsequently appointed to hear Limerick’s case against the FAI with respect to the association’s refusal to sanction the friendly with Barcelona. In a statement issued following the arbitration process, both parties revealed they had resolved all their differences. Pat O’Sullivan insisted that experience hadn’t put them off organising another

“What happened in relation to our planned friendly with Barcelona hasn’t put us off organising any more in the future,” O’Sullivan said.

“In fact it only makes us want to have more.”

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