Glenthorn Celtic are on a mission to land their first Premier AUL trophy

Experienced manager Derek Falvey can't wait to get back in action in the coming months
Glenthorn Celtic are on a mission to land their first Premier AUL trophy

Henry Healy (Cork AUL) presents the Team of the month award for September to Glenthorn Celtic A's manager Derek Falvey. Picture: Barry Peelo.

FROM Youths to MSL and League of Ireland, Derek Falvey has tasted what's it like to coach at the various levels. 

While gaining experience from each, he is now relishing a new challenge managing a club he played for, AUL side Glenthorn Celtic.

Although part of Billy Cronin's Rockmount backroom staff last season, Falvey decided to take up the offer of helping a rejuvenated Glenthorn to try and win their first Premier trophy. The Dublin Hill man, mostly known as Sparky, is looking forward to a new challenge. Along with Paul Burke, Liam Foley, Paul Kelleher and Don Cotter, he has assembled a very good and exciting side.

"There is a really talented side in place who have been working very hard all season," said Falvey. "At the beginning of the season, we signed about 12 players, each bringing quality to the side. Jason 'Gazza' Higgins, Jamie O'Donovan and Graham Murphy signed from Knockneheeney Celtic. All three have been fantastic in the dressing room."

They recruited experience in the likes of Edwin Buckley and John Gaffney. 

"Gaffers has being very good with our other two young centre-backs, Jamie Lewis and Ryan Meaney.

"Keith 'Stickman' O'Sullivan and Marco Crowley will play a big part if we are going to win trophies.

"We also just signed Gary Nolan and Seany O'Connor from the Glen. Our captain Jason McGrath has been very good for a number of years never has a bad game and I would love if we won something for him.

"When you add in lads such as Shane Gerathy, Shane Duggan, Tristan Foley, Kevin Allen and vice-captain Ian Cotter, I have huge confidence in this group."

With a superb backroom staff around him, the 40-year-old is hoping for a return to football soon.

"My coaching staff are excellent. We are really excited and cannot wait for the return of football, which we have all missed so much. 

"Apart from match day, I miss training sessions, ringing Paul and Liam with regards to team selection, and just the simple thing of going to watch other games. Anyone that knows me, would know I'm at football games every night of the week, whether it's in Rockmount Park, Castleview, St Mary's Park or St Colman's, I will always find a game. 

"Like many others, I'm going demented without football these past few months."

Falvey has enjoyed a lot of success as a coach, first with Leeds schoolboys alongside highly-rated Micky Hourihane, where his side won the U12 first division and then U13, U14, U15 and U16 premier titles, and after youths, he left for Cobh Ramblers' U19. 

At the Leeds AFC Player awards in 2013 were Timmy Foley, Kyle McNamara, Timmy Crowley with managers Derek Falvey and Mick Hourihan. Picture: Larry Cummins.
At the Leeds AFC Player awards in 2013 were Timmy Foley, Kyle McNamara, Timmy Crowley with managers Derek Falvey and Mick Hourihan. Picture: Larry Cummins.

Last year he spent a season coaching in the MSL and found it the best experience of his coaching career to date. 

"Billy Cronin asked me to go to Rockmount seniors and it was the best move of my coaching career. How this man has not managed in League of Ireland I do not know. 

I learned more from Billy in one season than I did from any A licenced coach I ever worked with. 

"Billy along with Derek Clarke, Eddie Kenny and Kiearn O'Sullivan, is superb to have at the club. So, from my experience there, I hope I have brought a higher level of professionalism to Glenthorn and with regards to standard, I am impressed with the level.

"The standard of the AUL Premier is the strongest it has been in years. Macroom Innishvilla and Pearse Celtic went up MSL but three strong teams came up from Premier A in Village, Glen Celtic and City Wanderers.

"Six out of the 10 premier sides are from the northside so you would have a lot of local derbies which are all very tough games. We were joint top with Coachford and Bohs all on the same points before it was cut short. 

"Our expectations were to challenge for the three big competitions, the league, AOH, and the Mossie Linnane and to go on a run in the FAI Junior Cup like last year when we won five rounds."

He hopes they'll be back in April or May, with the same focus and aims. 

"My ambition is to help Glenthorn win their first Premier trophy. 

Glenthorn was founded 25 years ago and it's great to see it grow each year, last year adding a women's team was great to see also. 

"My brother Troy, Ruairí Owens and Eric Lynch were founding members and all three are still current committee members. 

"A special mention goes to the Cronin brothers Ger and Nipper who done and won a lot for the club along with Colm, Micky and Fintan Forde who have been brilliant players for the club along with my own brother James 'Tails' Falvey who could of played with any senior team but stayed with the club he loves." 

Decky Barry of Southern Pumps, John Paul Energy Efficient Heating and Plumbing, Steve Murnane Painting, Fintan Forde Carpentry, Cian Forde Roadside Recovery, John O'Brien Pallets and Prime Carpentry all have been a huge support to the club. 

"My ambition to repay these lads is to win a major trophy and this is very much my focus for the season ahead."

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