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Chaos is in the past for Waterford as Blues aim for path to Aviva decider, says veteran keeper Brian Murphy

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Waterford goalkeeper Brian Murphy. Photo: Sportsfile

Waterford goalkeeper Brian Murphy. Photo: Sportsfile

Waterford goalkeeper Brian Murphy. Photo: Sportsfile

The fact that they can bring 750 of their supporters to Dublin for an FAI Cup semi-final, one they have a chance of winning based on recent form, is being taken as a sign that Waterford FC have emerged from their time of chaos and are on the right road at last.

Younger Blues fans – and even some of the current squad – have little or no memory of the Cup final experience as the club haven’t been on that stage since 2004.  

“I wasn’t here at the time, I was over in England so I only recall little bits from 2004, and the last one before that was 1980,” says Brian Murphy, Waterford’s veteran keeper who won the Cup in 2008 with tonight’s opponents, Bohemians.

“It’s great being in finals but you don’t want to be remembered as the team that lost a Cup final. We’re only in a semi, we’re not in the final yet, we’re up against a very good Bohs side and we are underdogs.”

Given all that’s happened on Suirside in the last two years, being where Marc Bircham’s side are now – 90 minutes away from the Cup final and in with a chance of Premier Division survival – is remarkable.

Including caretakers, they have been through six managers in the last 17 months, two international legends (John Sheridan, Kevin Sheedy) lasting not all that long, while there were serious Covid-19 issues, a change of ownership and carnage behind the scenes.

“It was well documented where we were and thankfully we have left that behind us. If you look at our form over the last four months, we are the form team, bar (Shamrock) Rovers, and they are about to win the league, so that’s a huge achievement considering we lost 12 out of 14,” says Murphy.

“There were chaotic scenes in the background, in terms of what was going on and that’s not good for a club, on and off the field. But we have put it behind us, new owners have come in and have been brilliant.

“And the manager deserves huge credit, it’s unfortunate we didn’t have someone like him at the start of the season, we might have been in a different position now. The important thing this year is the league and staying up.

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“We are in a position where we can claw away at the teams above us, the Cup is a bonus; if we get to a Cup final it’s great, that could drive the development of the club and where they want to get to,” added the 38-year-old, enthusiastic about the young talent at the RSC.

“I get great joy out of working with these lads, tell them that they will want to look back in 20 years’ time when they are 38, as I am now, and be proud of their careers.”

Bohemians v Waterford,
Live, RTÉ 2, 7.45


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