Burnley's rise gets Finn dreaming of what might have been
Shamrock Rovers midfielder Ronan Finn had mixed feelings as he watched Burnley secure promotion to the Premier League on Easter Monday.
The 26-year-old spent three weeks with Sean Dyche's Clarets over the winter and thought that a deal was done, but it failed to come to fruition.
"I was over for three weeks, got to know the place and they've a talented manager – a lovely man," said Finn.
"I was in the dressing-room before and after games and I thought maybe it was done but it just didn't happen in the end."
Finn doesn't expect the deal to be resurrected. "Not now, because they've got to the Premier League," he admitted.
"In fairness, I don't think I'm at that level. I'd back myself to go into a Championship team and do well, but they're going to be looking at bigger fish to survive in the Premier League."
Age is a problem for the UCD graduate. Clubs look at his profile and expect him to be a man for the present.
"I feel young," he sighed. "I feel like a 22-year-old. I hate the fact I've to tell people I'm 26. It kills me because I don't feel it.
"It's hard not to push yourself to go to the next level but if it happens, it happens. I'm delighted at Rovers and the only way I can get there is if I perform my best for Rovers."
Finn sees parallels between Burnley's spirit and the togetherness in the Rovers dressing-room under Trevor Croly this year.
"They worked hard every day and I can see it more in the group we have at Rovers this year," asserted the Liverpool fan who is looking forward to the Hoops' friendly with Brendan Rodgers' side at the Aviva Stadium on May 14.
Finn's 93rd-minute equaliser in Dundalk last Friday kept the Hoops within striking distance of the table-toppers and he'll be hoping to take the full three points from tonight's trip to improving Drogheda United.