Dundalk …. December 20, 2016Posted by irishelectionliterature in Culture.
One of the challenges of managing a team of limited resources is that invariably your best players will be tempted by better offers elsewhere. In the League of Ireland that is especially so. Dundalk so far have lost Andy Boyle, Daryl Horgan, Darren Meenan and Ronan Finn. Talk too of Gartland and Gannon going and Stephen O’Donnell too. Given the income generated by the Europa League run, rumour has it that naturally Dundalk players are looking for much improved contracts when resigning. Indeed Bray were supposedly holding out for a six figure fee for Dylan Connolly who has just signed new 2 year contract with Bray. (Incidentally you’d wonder where Bray , who had financial difficulties recently and average crowds of 400 last season, are getting the money for all their signings and how long can they afford to pay them?)
In an interview with The Dundalk Democrat , Stephen Kenny stated that its likely that more players will leave.
One of the things about Dundalk these last few seasons has been the settled nature of the squad. No mass overhaul of the squad that is often the case with other clubs. A few players in and a few players out. If there is an exodus it’s quite late in the day to be signing new players.
When he took over at Rovers in January 2012 Kenny was rushing to get a squad together and signed Kerrea Gilbert, Conor Powell, Oscar Jansen, Colin Hawkins, Daryl Kavanagh, Killian Brennan, Graham Gartland and Reyaad Pieterse. None of them were a success. What also happened was that the loss of one player turned others who had been brilliant like Craig Lives to rubbish. It’s one thing signing a few players each season but having to replace half a dozen or more is going to be difficult. There’s not much quality available to sign at the moment here, so to improve the team he’ll have to go abroad. I’m sure Dundalk are inundated with offers from agents but plenty of these players /agents will be expecting a fairly hefty wage.
In the later half of the season goalkeeper was a problem position for Dundalk, it was presumed that they’d sign a keeper, instead Gary Rogers and Gabriel Sava were both given new contracts.
There’s another two months before a ball is kicked but I’m getting more confident of Rovers prospects and that Dundalk will find it hard to repeat or even improve on this years fantastic achievement.