Lee Devitt loved his time in Cobh but moved closer to home at Treaty United

'I thoroughly enjoyed my time with Cobh over the past two seasons and although it’s always sad to leave a club, I’m looking forward to the new challenge'
Lee Devitt loved his time in Cobh but moved closer to home at Treaty United

Lee Devitt of Cobh Ramblers in action against Eoin Farrell of UCD. Picture: Matt Browne/Sportsfile

WHILE he is sad to depart Cobh Ramblers, Lee Devitt is looking forward to a new challenge with Munster rivals Treaty United as he became one of the most recent signings for Tommy Barrett’s side for the 2022 season.

Devitt spent the past two seasons playing in Cobh where he was a key player for both Stuart Ashton and Darren Murphy, but a move closer to home was a huge incentive for the 21-year-old Clare native.

“I thoroughly enjoyed my time with Cobh over the past two seasons, and although it’s always sad to leave a club, I’m looking forward to the new challenge,” said Devitt.

“When the current season ended, I received a phone call from Tommy Barrett, the Treaty United manager, requesting to know would I be interested in being part of his plans for the season ahead.

“I was buzzing to receive the call, as it was an opportunity to be closer to home and play again with old team-mates.

“I’m really excited for the move, as I’m really familiar with Tommy and his style of play, I also believe my game will develop further under Tommy.

“I was with Cobh Ramblers for the past two seasons and I really enjoyed my time there.

“I learned a lot playing with quality players week in week out, and also two different styles under Stuart Ashton and Darren Murphy.

“I gained a lot of experience, as I had a lot of game time in the two years I was there.

“My favourite moment came this season when we beat Cork City in the derby in Coleman’s Park. We were on a bad run of form at the time, but it was a great day for the club and the supporters.

“Another moment I will remember is the 2019-'20 season when we were on a very good run of form when pushing for the play-offs beating Galway, Longford, and Drogheda away from home, who were all in contention to get promoted automatically.

DISAPPOINTMENT

“The lowest point came in the same season when a win in our final home game of the season would have secured a play-off spot, but we failed to beat Shamrock Rovers B, the same night Galway played UCD and scored late, meaning we were out of the play-offs on goal difference.

“My reason for leaving was I felt I needed a new challenge, and logistically it made more sense as I was travelling from Clare four nights a week.

“I made 49 appearances for Cobh, as the number of games in the opening season was reduced due to Covid.

“I started 48 of those games and made one substitute appearance. I played in numerous positions for Cobh over my two-year spell, primarily centre-midfield and left-back, I was always pleased to do whatever role I was required to do.

“The season overall, personally, I felt went well, as I made a high number of appearances, and I felt I performed consistently throughout the year.

The squad was highly competitive and full of experience with the likes of John Kavanagh and Ian Turner, but unfortunately we suffered some long-term injuries which affected our progress as a team.

“We were highly disappointed with where we finished, as we set a target at the start of the year to be higher up the table. Our home form wasn’t good enough at the beginning, but the return of the crowds really kicked us on and we finished the season very strong, winning three on the bounce.”

Lee Devitt, Cobh Ramblers in action against Kurtis Byrne, Athlone Town. Picture: Ray Ryan
Lee Devitt, Cobh Ramblers in action against Kurtis Byrne, Athlone Town. Picture: Ray Ryan

Devitt started out with Shannon Hibs at the age of five and quickly progressed through the ranks, all the way to League of Ireland level, where he has played a big role since.

“I moved to Limerick FC after the Kennedy Cup in 2014 and played League of Ireland U17 and U19 with them,” he says.

“I then made my first-team debut when I was 18 with Limerick FC, where Tommy Barrett was the manager at the time.

“I went on to make 20 league appearances with Limerick, finishing the club top scorer in the same season.

“My experience of the League of Ireland to date is that it’s a highly competitive league, and each game you play throws up a high level of fitness, quality — and each team has different ways of playing.

“You need to be physically well prepared and really focused, as small margins have a big impact on results.

“My ambitions going forward are to keep getting as many minutes as I can, keep learning from coaches and players I play with and around the league. My overall ambition in the League of Ireland is to reach the highest level in this country.

“Treaty had a great first season, especially with Tommy having so little time to get a squad of players together at the start of the season.

“They surprised a lot of people, as nobody knew what to expect from them. They were very organised from front to back, and they all knew their roles under Tommy and the management team. Treaty reaching the play-offs was very impressive in their opening season in the league.

“I hope to improve the squad, get as many minutes as I can and help Treaty go one step further than last season.

For me, moving clubs is a new, exciting challenge, but I need to ensure I’m ready to go at the start of the campaign as starting places will be competitive.

“I currently live in Newmarket-on-Fergus, so the commute is much shorter than my time playing with Cobh.

“My hopes for next season is to stay injury-free, get as much game time as possible, work really hard for the team and club, and improve on my goal ratio from previous seasons.

“As a team, I am hoping to improve on last year, and hopefully with more competition in the squad, that will be possible.”

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