FOOTBALL

Kenny's delight as Saturday Night Fever hits The Showgrounds

Gavin McLaughlin

Reporter:

Gavin McLaughlin

Email:

gavin@dundalkdemocrat.ie

Kenny's delight as Saturday Night Fever hits The Showgrounds

Patrick McEleney celebrates at full-time with Tommy Stewart. Picture: Ciaran Culligan

Dundalk manager Stephen Kenny paid tribute to the supporters who defied the treacherous weather conditions to make the long journey to Sligo at the weekend.
The away section at The Showgrounds was jam packed and full of Saturday Night Fever with the Lilywhite Army using the opportunity to bang out some new tunes, the highlight being a Patrick McEleney chant inspired by Chaka Khan’s 1983 classic, ’Ain’t Nobody’.
Their backing paid off as Dundalk ran out comfortable 4-0 winners and speaking afterwards, Kenny spoke glowingly about the contribution from the terraces.
“There were a lot of new songs. It had a bit of a disco feel to it! The players are enjoying them,” he smiled.
Michael Duffy was also the subject of a new ditty. The 22-year-old opened his account with Dundalk’s second goal of the night and provided the assist for Tommy Stewart to claim his first for the club late on.
“Michael’s quite an unorthodox player in that he turns up in unusual positions,” said Kenny.
“Look at his goal. Like, what’s he doing over there? He’s a left winger and he’s turned up in the inside right channel. Nobody picked him up and that’s what got him space.
“He doesn’t hug the line and just get up and down. He appears everywhere and his goal ratio is very good. He creates and scores goals and that’s not a bad habit to be in.”
With a host of players injured, Kenny handed four players their Lilywhites debut on the night. Conor Clifford and Niclas Vemmelund started while Stewart and Steven Kinsella came on in the second half.
“People didn’t think we’d be that strong this year,” he remarked. “Some of the new players are low profile and not marquee signings but we like them and that’s the main thing.
“Niclas hasn’t really played at left back in his career but he looks like a very good defender and player.
“Conor Clifford is a joy to watch. He has a great array of passing and Steven Kinsella is also a joy to watch.
“Tommy Stewart came on and scored. It must be one of the quickest debut goals ever. He was only on the pitch for three minutes and he got on the end of a brilliant back heel by Michael Duffy.
“He works hard for the team and is a different type of player to what we have got. He can play in all the attacking positions and will be a good addition.”
The victory propelled Dundalk back to the top of the table and Kenny was quick to praise his players for the start they have made to their title defence.
“There were some question marks asked about the team and everybody has had to dig in really,” he said.
“We had a deserved win against Shamrock Rovers and a comprehensive win tonight. With the players we have been missing, that’s a big six points for us.”