'Stephen Cluxton has set the bar higher for everyone' - Dublin goalkeeper Ciara Trant hails influence of Sky Blues captain
Dublin’s TG4 All Star Ciara Trant believes that better goalkeeping has brought Ladies Football to a whole new level.
Trant has also praised her male counterpart Stephen Cluxton with changing the face of the game.
"Goalkeeping standards rising has brought the game to a whole new level. It's fantastic to see and the more goalkeeping rises, the harder it is on forwards and the better the defence becomes as well so it's all positive," said Trant.
"Cluxton has changed the game and he’s set the bar higher for everyone to try and reach so yeah, everyone's following in his footsteps and it's great to be able to learn from someone who's such a nice guy and so efficient at what he does," said Trant, speaking in Dublin as the LGFA's new insurance partner AIG announced exclusive discounts on car and home insurance for LGFA members and their families.
Trant is goalkeeper for Mick Bohan’s side, who face Westmeath in the TG4 Leinster final next Sunday, and she revealed that the Leinster decider is a game she’s wary of.
"I'm always extremely nervous playing Westmeath. The score-line over the past few years hasn't reflected how the game has gone. I think two years ago they hit the crossbar three times in the game.
"They're always up for it so there will be a bit of nerves on my part which will probably be a healthy thing. Looking forward to getting Championship started and we’re just focusing on ourselves and getting things right for day one," she added.
The St Brigid’s footballer is a fan of the competition’s All-Ireland qualifier format as it gives sides more games to develop as a team and enables them to reach their potential.
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"I love the new format. The more games the better and it gives you a chance as a team to develop more. It makes it more competitive and more exciting.
"Training and getting up in the morning is a lot easier when you have another match coming up on a regular basis, rather than knowing it's four or five weeks' time until your next game," the Dublin footballer said.
Trant was happy to get back playing for her club, after the disappointment of not winning the Lidl National League, as Cork defeated Dublin in the Division 1 semi-final.
"I suppose not winning the League is a disappointment, considering we won it the previous year but there’s a lot of new girls on the panel this year and it’s great for everyone to get game time – that’s essential.
"The gap between league and championship isn’t great from a Dublin perspective but as players you get to go back and play with your club, back to where it started. It’s fantastic that in Dublin we’ve such a competitive club championship," she said.
*Ciara Trant, Niamh Carr, Áine McDonagh and Eimear Scally were at the announcement of AIG’s exclusive insurance offers to LGFA members