'Nobody will ever have as broad a knowledge of the club as Jim had, nobody. He started attending Oriel Park in 1940s and grew up not too far from the old Athletic Grounds.' (Pic: Sportsfile)
Dundalk FC are a club that have been blessed with many legends in its time – Joey Donnelly, Jimmy Hasty and Tommy McConville to name but a few. If you are of a certain generation, then the chances of you knowing a whole heap about these particular greats would be slim if not for Jim Murphy, who is very much a Dundalk FC great in his own right.
Nobody will ever have as broad a knowledge of the club as Jim had, nobody. He started attending Oriel Park in the 1940s and grew up not too far from the old Athletic Grounds. A walking Dundalk FC repository, he used his outstanding writing skills to educate a generation and, indeed, future generations about the history of this great football club.
You could listen to Jim all day, you really could. You could also spend hours reading his work. His first book, A History of Dundalk FC – The First 100 Years, was one of the first football books I ever got my hands on, although it wasn’t until years later that I truly appreciated the depths of information this exact piece of work contained.
He also deservedly won an award for his second publication, entitled C’mon the Town – A Dundalk FC Miscellany.
As a young lad, his historical articles in the club’s matchday programme were always of interest to me as well. It’s fair to say that Jim provided inspiration to myself and if it wasn’t for him, I probably never would have even started writing about Dundalk FC.
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His legend is not restricted to his vast knowledge and literacy skills, though – Jim was a gentleman. Always approachable, he often provided me with useful statistical information that I simply would never have been able to source myself. He even helped me with my programme collection, of which he once generously donated a treasure trove.
A mark of the kindness that was symbolic of this lovely man. In turn, I provided him with several profiles of former players from the modern era, some of which he sadly never got the chance to publish on his exceptional Dundalk FC – Who’s Who website.
He may have resided in Blackrock, but Jim was a Dundalk man through and through. He served as a director and club historian at Dundalk FC. He also worked at PJ Carroll’s for a number of years as well. It’s fairly safe to say that anyone that knew Jim would only have good things to say about him.
My thoughts are with his family at this difficult time. That said, I sincerely hope they can take some comfort from the fact that Jim’s legacy at Dundalk FC will live forever. Of that there is zero doubt.
RIP, Jim, and C’mon the Town…