When Gerry Lynn took charge of Mullinalaghta back in May he knew there was a good panel of players to work with and plenty of potential. Little did he think though that come October, St. Columba’s would be in the county final.
“I always believed in them. Whether or not I thought we would get to the county final this year, it was a big ask of them. I felt they had the basis of winning a championship and that’s why I was so interested in getting involved with them. I know the ability is there. Along the way you always need something to go your way; we hadn’t a whole lot of good luck but we hadn’t any bad luck either which was good. That’s a big plus,” said Lynn in speaking to the Leader.
It is a marvellous achievement for Gerry and his players and he couldn’t praise them highly enough. “They are a marvellous bunch and I couldn’t have asked for anything more over the last number of months. When you have that commitment and get a little rub of the green along the way, you cannot complain.”
Sunday will be Mullinalaghta’s first appearance in the county senior football championship final in 62 years and as the big day draws closer excitement is building in the small north Longford parish. Everyone is soaking up the atmosphere.
“Every now and again you get a group of players who come together and they surpass everything that has gone before them. That’s the key element. It doesn’t matter about the size of the parish. Anything is possible when you have the right group and there is a great atmosphere in the camp at the moment. Things have been going well,” said Lynn.
As well as the passionate supporters from their own parish, Mullinalaghta will have lots of support on Sunday next from the north Longford area and Cavan.
“Everyone likes an underdog and I expect the neutrals will be shouting for us. Mullinalaghta are in that end of the county that borders Cavan so we will have good support from that region. Hopefully, the final will attract a big crowd.”
Looking ahead to the game and the tactics both sides will employ, Mostrim native Gerry Lynn feels it will be an open encounter with nothing between the sides.
“It’s going to be an open game and I think it will be a close encounter. We have never employed anything negative and Killoe are probably one of the most free-flowing teams in Longford at the moment.”
Lynn has every confidence in his side and hopes they can put in a big performance. He believes if they do that, no matter what the outcome, they will have no regrets.
“This is a whole new ball game for the Mullinalaghta lads. It’s a big step for them but if we perform we will be happy regardless of the result. The worst thing for a team to say after a final is that ‘we didn’t perform’. That’s the big thing and it’s all you can ask for. That’s what the whole parish wants; a good performance.”