Galway FC arrive at Oriel Park this Friday night as big outsiders to advance in the FAI Cup but Vinny Faherty has warned his old club not to take them lightly.
The 27-year-old has returned to the west after spending a disappointing season with The Town last year and has been in fine form on his return, scoring seven times in the First Division for a Galway side who lie third in the table, eight points off Shelbourne.
“I think we could be doing better. We have some good players who work very hard and I think we can be a real force going forward,” he told The Dundalk Democrat.
“Within the group we have good belief and always try to do well. Galway is a strange enough town in that if you are doing well, the people will come out and support you but maybe not so much if you are struggling.”
Faherty, who is now going to balance the life of a footballer and a student after enrolling at NUI Galway where he will study Commerce, is looking forward to the trip but admitted his side were not jumping with joy at the draw.
“It will be nice to go back to Dundalk and see everyone. But it is definitely the worst draw we could have gotten in terms of difficulty so from that point of view it isn’t the best to be playing on that pitch against what I believe is the best side in the country,” continued the ex-St Pat’s man.
“I can’t speak highly enough of Dundalk and I hope they go on and win the league. I expected it to be good but it surpassed all of my expectations. From the management right down to the people who work in reception, everyone is great and I have no regrets.”
Yet there is one lingering qualm for Faherty regarding his time at Oriel Park. He managed just one goal, against Derry City, in his 23 league appearances.
Not delivering the goods for manager Stephen Kenny was tough to take.
He confessed: “My one regret would be that I maybe didn’t repay Stephen in terms of goals and the faith he had in me. Last year, I came in quite late and missed a lot of pre-season and then Pat came into the team and kicked on well.”
In spite of his underwhelming campaign in 2013 for the Lilywhites, Faherty does not believe he has a point to prove and believes the Tribesmen can hurt their hosts despite the form that Dundalk are currently in.
“Honestly, I don’t think I have a point to prove to anyone. I just want to do well for my teammates rather than to prove anything so that isn’t on my mind. I didn’t play to my full ability when I was there.
“But I think we can cause them problems and if we can spring a surprise or two on them then anything can happen. We are set up well and have been good on the road this year too,” he warned.
“It will be a tough game but we will look forward to it and try to catch them for sure.”