WATCH | Neale Fenn determined to lead Longford Town back to SSE Airtricity League Premier Division

After missing out on the play-offs last year, De Town ready to make up for lost time

Football management is a continual learning process and Longford Town boss Neale Fenn hasn't stopped updating his education since he took on the position in June 2017.

'De Town' are enjoying a fantastic 2019 season, second spot in the SSE Airtricity League First Division, having only suffered two defeats in 11 league matches this campaign. 

Fenn's Longford side were widely tipped to get promoted in the 2018 campaign but fell away from the promotion race in the final weeks of the season, despite some impressive results during the campaign which included a 5-1 win over eventual Champions UCD AFC. 

In an extensive FAI TV interview, the 42-year old admitted that lessons were learnt and that he has adapted his approach for the 2019 campaign with De Town. 

"It's been a good start but it feels like we're only just getting started so we need to keep that momentum up, and keep getting results," said Longford Town boss Neale Fenn.

"I looked at the teams who got promoted last year, UCD were a level above the rest of the teams, playing the style of football they did. They had players go to the likes of Cork City, Derry City and Dundalk so I wasn't sure we could replicate that style of play straight away. 

"You look at the other team, Finn Harps. They had a solid defence. We made it our mission this season to be a bit more defensively-minded, we brought in some good defenders and whilst we still look to be progressive, we're mindful that we don't concede whilst doing it."

Cabinteely currently occupy top spot in the SSE Airtricity League First Division after their narrow 1-0 win over Longford last Saturday, thanks to Kieran 'Marty' Waters' late strike. 

Despite the defeat, Longford remain in a fantastic position with a game in hand on their promotion rivals ahead of Friday's trip to Galway United. Having had the backing of Chairman Jim Hanley for the 2019 campaign, Fenn is determined to lead the club to the Premier Division. 

"Last year, we had some great results and then, we'd lose a silly game. Then we'd go on another bit of a run, we just needed a bit of consistency," continued Fenn.

"We need to be able to grind out a result, I don't remember us doing that at all last season. When we won a game, it was because we deserved to win it but you need to find a number of different ways to win a game.

"This season, you speak to any manager in the league so far, they would think that they're in the game and could have nicked some results against us. We're more resilient and get the job done. 

"The chairman wanted us to get promoted last season, unfortunately that didn't happen but he said he had enjoyed the season and has backed me for this campaign. I want to get the club up for him and for the town, and we'll be doing everything we can to achieve that."

Also read: Late winner for Cabinteely as Longford Town’s unbeaten record is broken

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