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Cumann Peile Shíol Bhroin | Let's go Shels!


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Season 2024 Preview

Transfers

In | Out

I believe we have potential to grow with those players we have, so our transfer campaign was not really active. I had some thoughts about Jordan Williams as he was great in our first season in IPL and has a lot of experience, but he was out for overall 14 weeks with injures last season and we needed more pace on this wing.

23px-Flag_of_Ireland.svg.png Will Fitzgerald - we had to spend some money on this pacey winger but I believe he is worthy of it. Was one of the key players in Waterford. 

23px-Flag_of_Ireland.svg.png Aidan Keena - our home-grown player who spent majority of his career in Scotland and even had 10 matches in Premiership with Hearts.

23px-Flag_of_Ireland.svg.png Ryan Nolan - was signed on free. Good defender with really interesting career. In young age he moved to Inter from Spanish lower league team. And after 6 seasons in Italy where he had only 8 matches in Serie C with Arezzo he returned to Spain. But after 1 year with Getafe he moved back to him homeland and 3 seasons was a player of Derry City. 

23px-Flag_of_Ireland.svg.png Mark Doyle - another free transfer. Was crucial for Drogheda Utd. Want him to retrain to right winger and believe he is capable of it.

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Squad Overview

Goalkeepers

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I still have faith in this duet. Ryan was awarded last season as best goalkeeper of IPL and want to maintain this status.

Defenders

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Our area of strength. Feely, Alex Kirk, Downing are one of the key players in the team and rotation options are also good enough.

Midfielders

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With Fitzgerald our left side looks more solid now. Also I plan to move Charters to central midfield as he has all skills to play there. Hope for another great season of O'Neill.

Strikers

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Sam Doyle is natural striker but he learns new position of left midfielder where he played second half of last season. Keena is expected to be our main weapon in attack. And i also want to give some playing time for our last year youth intake product Keogh.

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Friendly matches

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I'm glad with how we prepared to the new season. And friendly matches is one of the positive moments. 6 wins with no goals conceded. But more important we avoided any serious injures during this run of games.

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Tittle Odds/Board Expectations

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Still very comfortable expectations. But I want to fight for the 1st place again though we are not real favorites.

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 I would more like affiliate from playable leagues but it's ok too. Interesting that Cherry Orchard has better facilities than our club despite they are amateurs.

 

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February 2024

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Matches against Waterford are usually very tough for us and it's good to start with the win against this team. We totally dominated in the next fixture with St. Pat's but unbelievable luck saved them from losing.

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March 2024

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Perfect month with 7 straight wins. Very important 6 points against our main rivals Shamrock and Dundalk. The only thing I'm concerned with is the fact that we conceded in all matches during this period. Our defensive play should be slightly better.

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April 2024

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Another unbeatable month. Though in last matches despite pleasant scores I had some concerns about our game but anyway we got the points, that's more important. Looks like we are in the same company again with Dundalk and Shamrock fighting for the tittle.

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My second offered job interview. And I refused it again. 

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May 2024

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The first defeat in this season came from where I didn't expect. After losing to Shamrock in Cup game I decided to make some adjustment to the tactic as I noticed some problems: 1. We allow too much space for oppositions to control the ball. 2. We often lose ball in unnecessary situations. So I enabled counter-pressing still playing with a low block. It kept compactness but at the same time we started to apply more pressure on oppositions when losing the ball. And I slightly changed in possession instructions reducing passing length but at the same time increasing tempo to be more unpredictable. So after these tweaks we won 5 matches in a row with notable improvement in overall performance on the pitch. Let see how will it work in a long term.

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Money from last year European campaign.

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June 2024

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Mid-season break

For the first time I have full month of break. And it's good because in last two month we played 16 matches and players need a rest.

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We made a really good exchange in central defense position. Jake Cooper moved to Sunderland for decent fee (125k) and at the same time we have signed for free 23px-Flag_of_Ireland.svg.png Leigh Kavanagh from Walsall, who is younger and has more potential. 

Another deal is loan signing - 23px-Flag_of_Ireland.svg.png Daryl Thorne from Chesterfield, 18 y.o. striker who can also play as winger.

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Not so promising like last intakes. We have a lot of good young central defenders in our system so only hope it will be special one.

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Good  news that now we have 3 teams starting qualification in ECL from the 2nd round. 

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We are still too low in European hierarchy but with regular participation in Euro cups we should move further and faster. 

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We start with matches against Moldavian side.

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First major tournament for our young goalkeeper. Hope he will get chances to show himself.

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Another one offer and second from Scottish Premiership.

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July 2024

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Matches against Petrocub were not so easy as I expected but we were more clinical in attack which allowed us to go through 1 QF round. But our next round first leg is a real sensation. Strong AEK side was beaten with crazy 4-0 score and our task for 2nd leg is more easier now. In the league we had 3 draws in a row and two of them against Shamrock and Dundalk which is good but we were very lucky in these games. 

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Very strange deal. Owen is average youngster with a doubtful potential. I don't know what was there motive for doing that but 325k is too much even for good IPL players.

Also we let Jordan Williams go to Shrewsbury for 50k. Jordan was on loan at Leyton Orient at the first half of the season.

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On the last day of the transfer window we signed on loan decent young winger 23px-Flag_of_Ireland.svg.png Darren Connor. If he performs well for us we would think about permanent transfer.

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August 2024

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And we did it again !!! So proud of my boys...what a Team! Total destroy of AEK with 8-0 in two matches and incredible performance of O'Sullivan in second leg. After that win I was confident that we can go through last two QF rounds and it happened. Second Euro autumn in a row. Group stage draw is not so bad, I think we have chances if we will play like in QF matches.

In the league our position looks solid. if we could grab points in games with Shamrock and Dundalk our chances to finish at the top greatly rise. 

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And you know what I did with this money

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Yes, our Euro campaign is great but...look what Dundalk has done :eek:

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They are in CL group stages! Fantastic rise of Irish football.

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September 2024

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We are very close to the tittle. What we need is just to keep our excellent form. Good start of ECL group stage. We looked better than Slovan but draw is god result too.

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I'm really excited with Macedonian defender 23px-Flag_of_North_Macedonia.svg.png /23px-Flag_of_Ireland.svg.png Boby Terziev. I see him as perfect fullback in my system so already started to retrain him for this position. 23px-Flag_of_Ireland.svg.png Anthony Conway and 23px-Flag_of_Ireland.svg.png Peter Brown are another decent youngsters from this intake.

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October 2024

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Perfect month and we are the champions!...again. If we win last match against Cork City we will break our record for the points set two years ago. Also we look great in Europe and have all chances to qualify from the group.

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And our u19 team won their league for the second time in a row. Keogh and O'Donovan are very close to the senior team. Probably they should expect chances in the next season.

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