With one game left to play in 2016 and after losing our last four games in all competitions it would be fair to think that there is an air of despondency about the club. Whilst recent results certainly haven’t been good enough and need turned around sooner rather than later, the mood amongst our group is nothing but positive. We all know we can play a lot better and once we have a full squad to choose from I have no doubt performances and results will return to those as per the early part of the season. It’s also easy to forget the magnificent year that we have had after achieving our initial goal of returning to Irish League football. To be sitting 4th in the league and still be disappointed shows how far we have come but also serves as a warning in not to be getting ahead of ourselves.
This is a really tough league and one where you get punished when not performing at a high level. That said we now know we are well fit for this league and certainly have not been well beaten by any side. It’s a steep learning curve for players and management but one that we must adapt to quickly to allow us to progress. We have a really good group of players who are proud to pull on the Newry jersey and I can’t fault them for their attitude or commitment. It’s during testing periods like this that you learn more about your players and also myself as a manager but I have no doubt we will all look back on this run as an experience that made us stronger.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank the players and coaching staff at every level throughout the club for the contribution they have made this year in ensuring the club is progressing. We need a constant flow of good young local players that are fit to play senior football and I know they are working hard to ensure that happens. I would also like to thank our committee and match day staff for their support and dedication in what is a voluntary role. Their work off the pitch means that we have a better chance of success on the pitch. Good sponsors are hard to find but we have been very lucky in that respect and we really do appreciate their continued support.
Finally I would like to thank our supporters for their unwavering support. We have given them plenty to cheer about over the past 3 years and hopefully that continues in 2017. On behalf of the players and coaching staff I would like to wish everyone a joyous and peaceful Christmas and a happy New Year.
Yours in sport,