Stephen Kenny reveals his delight after penning new deal with champions Dundalk
Dundalk manager Stephen Kenny has signed a one-year extension to his contract which will keep him at the club until the end of 2016.
Kenny, 43, led Dundalk to their first league title in 19 years last season as the Lilywhites played fluid, attacking football all year in a season that also saw them lift the EA Sports Cup.
Kenny's men have got off to a flying start again this campaign and they currently lead the Airtricity Premier League by two points ahead of Cork City.
"We made an agreement at the end of the season but I just put pen-to-paper this week,” said Kenny. “So this wasn’t something we decided in the last few days but I am delighted to be staying on until the end of 2016.
“It has been a tremendous journey the club have embarked on in the last few years and it has been great to be part of. We were bottom of the league and had a completely new group go from where we were to league champions and to win trophies. It has been great for all involved.”
Kenny now has his eyes on keeping Dundalk at the top table of Irish football and that means another title this season as well as a successful European adventure.
“The big challenge now is to keep that going. It has been 20 years since Dundalk were consistently in the top four, 20 years since Dermot Keely won the league here and it has been that long since Dundalk were an established club. That’s the challenge we face now.
“We want to mount a defence of our title and we look forward to Europe as well.
“There’s a great hunger among everyone at the club. The work ethic of my technical staff and by everyone behind the scenes has been terrific and a vital part of our success. They have been fantastic to work with through this time. To have the club compete and grow with the perceived bigger clubs is a credit to everyone at the club.”
The former Shamrock Rovers manager also praised the club's support base.
“It has been great to see the club grow. The crowd have been terrific since I have come in here and they have grown through the time. They have been so passionate and really got behind the team which has been a huge help.
“It’s great to see the huge crowds come to Oriel Park and see them with such passion.
“Last season, winning the EA Sports Cup was for 90% of the players, their first trophy. The league title for the majority again was their first and it has given them the hunger for more. They want to get better. They want to improve and better themselves.
“The players are developing all the time and they are on an upward curve and it’s great for them all. Since I have come in the players have been brilliant for me.”