Sunday 22 July 2018

O'Donnell: We can't be snobby

Aviva Stadium. Photo: Andrew Surma/NurPhoto via Getty Images
Aviva Stadium. Photo: Andrew Surma/NurPhoto via Getty Images
Daniel McDonnell

Daniel McDonnell

One year ago this week, Dundalk were at the Aviva Stadium for the exhilaration of a Champions League play-off with Legia Warsaw.

They have different ambitions this year, although they ultimately revolve around a return to the national stadium in November for an FAI Cup final.

Club captain Stephen O'Donnell says they have to get over any disappointment and realise that victory in next month's EA Sports Cup final with Shamrock Rovers and success in the FAI Cup would still represent a very good year's work.

"We've still two cups and we can't be too snobby and look down our noses at two cups," said O'Donnell, who featured in Sunday's destruction of Derry to set up a round-of-16 FAI Cup tie with intermediate side Crumlin.

"If you win two cups and come second in the league, which is realistically our main goal now, it would be huge. If you go and win the FAI Cup, you go into the off season in good spirits and look forward to next season

"So that's our main aim, it's a great day out for the players and the fans. We love playing at the Aviva, and we're after knocking one of the big boys out of it."

Dundalk have hit their stride since the mid-season break, although the loss to Cork City just before it ended any title ambitions. O'Donnell feels that a new group are finally starting to click.

"There is definitely more chemistry now," he says. "There were a lot of outgoings and incomings over the winter and players finding their feet, players injured as a backlog from last season.

"Now you've everyone fit for probably the first time this season so hopefully we can kick on from here."

Irish Independent

Sport Newsletter

The best sport action straight to your inbox every morning.

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport