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Dundalk boss says club would bring huge crowd to Lansdowne if they beat Drogheda

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UP FOR THE CUP: Dundalk manager Stephen Kenny is pictured with the FAI Ford Cup ahead of tomorrow's semi-final with Louth rivals Drogheda United.

UP FOR THE CUP: Dundalk manager Stephen Kenny is pictured with the FAI Ford Cup ahead of tomorrow's semi-final with Louth rivals Drogheda United.

UP FOR THE CUP: Dundalk manager Stephen Kenny is pictured with the FAI Ford Cup ahead of tomorrow's semi-final with Louth rivals Drogheda United.

WITHOUT a major trophy in more than 10 years, Dundalk is a soccer town with a hunger needing to be fed, according to manager Stephen Kenny.

Still in with a chance of landing the league title this season,, Dundalk will win a place in the FAI Cup final if they can get past local rivals Drogheda United in tomorrow's semi-final.

The players have spoken this season of how they are not content with getting plaudits for their attractive style of play and their unexpected success.

They narrowly avoided relegation last season yet Dundalk have already secured a place in Europe for next season, but the players want to have a trophy to show for their efforts.

And Kenny is also aware of the demand within the town for the good times to come back.

"I think this team we have this season has reawakened a lot of interest in the club, won back some of the support for the team," Kenny told the Herald.

"Dundalk is a working class town. The unemployment rate there is 25pc higher than most towns of its size, so the football team brings a lot of optimism to the town and people in Dundalk can relate to it.

"We have really achieved something by qualifying for Europe but everyone here is desperate to win the cup.

"We all want to get to Lansdowne Road. Dundalk have only been to a final in Lansdowne once, all the other finals were in Dalymount Park or Tolka Park. I have been involved in finals at the RDS and Tolka and Lansdowne as well, and there is something special about going to Lansdowne Road.

 

SPECIAL

"For the players it's special, it's the home of the national team and they want to play there, the fans feel the same way.

"We would empty out the town if we get to the final, we have the capacity to bring a big crowd," added Kenny.

Before all that Dundalk have to beat Drogheda, no easy task given Drogheda's record in the cups over the last two seasons, and this year they reached the final of the Setanta Cup and the EA Sports Cup.

"Drogheda have a great cup record and have a good side so we'll have to be at our best to win the semi," Kenny explained.

"We were disappointed with the two defeats we had recently but we played well on Monday against Derry and had a deserved win, we have secured a place in Europe now.

"We haven't finished in the top three since 1995 so to come from where we were last season to where we are now is a great achievement.

"Beating Derry earlier this week was a nice boost for morale and we'll go into the game with confidence.

"This is a Louth derby so there's always an edge. We have taken seven points from a possible nine off Drogheda this season but form goes out the window.

"There is a tight pitch at Drogheda and it'll be hard to get the space we want to play but we'll endeavour do to that. We have good footballing players who can pass the ball, like Towell and O'Donnell and hopefully we can show that tomorrow."


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