Casement Celtic battling to deliver trophies on two fronts

With James Corcoran at the helm, the junior team is riding high in the league
Casement Celtic battling to deliver trophies on two fronts

GLORY DAYS: Casement Celtic and Casement Utd FAI Junior Cup area finalists 1983. Back: J Downey, M Foulkes, G McGreevy, M Hanley, P O’Brien, B Mulcahy, J McCarthy, N Elliot, A Murphy, F Lennox, L Walsh, J Dowling, D Linehan. Middle: G O’Connor, S O’Sullivan, G Mulcahy, P Mulcahy, L Mulcahy, D Devereaux, J Dowling, D Lingwood, P O’Sullivan, T Bruton, M Foulkes. Front: J Bowen, K McSweeny, B O’Sullivan, T O’Donovan, G Murray, J Power, J Tighe.

IT'S their first full season together as a team but being top of the league after 11 games Casement junior manager James Corcoran is excited at the possibility of lifting silverware this season.

“It’s what we set out to do from the beginning of the season and while people may have thought I set the bar high, I've always demanded high standards of myself and I’m glad to say things are going great so far,” said Corcoran.

Currently sitting top of the junior third division, led by captain Ian Towler, Corcoran believes it’s the work ethic and attitude from his squad has gotten them this far.

“It has been all down to the squad's commitment, hard work and resilience the reason why we are in the position that we are in. 

"We currently sit top of the league with seven games to go and we will be aiming to be right in amongst that title challenge come the end of the season.

“We are a relatively new side as we only have been up and running since 2020 as a junior team and unfortunately with Covid seasons have been stopped so this season is our first full season. 

"We have a very young squad with the average age being about 24 or 25 but a lot of the players have won trophies at underage, juniors and seniors so they have that winning mentality about them. 

"Ian Towler is our captain who comes from a brilliant footballing family, he has been very influential in bringing in some fantastic players, likewise our vice-captain Alex Cummins so there is a nice balance of southside and northside players. 

Former Kilreen Junior Player of the year Ian Towler gets his award from Peadar O'Leary, Cork Youths League. He is now the captain of Casement.
Former Kilreen Junior Player of the year Ian Towler gets his award from Peadar O'Leary, Cork Youths League. He is now the captain of Casement.

"Each individual in the squad brings something different but the most important part for me is that they're hard working, determined and have that hunger to win.” 

The Ballyphehane man feels privileged to be part of a club steeped in football history and having two competitive sides at the club is important to everyone involved.

Being from Ballyphehane the club has always been of huge interest to me. It's a club steeped in success so to be given the opportunity to manage the club is an absolute honour and I am really enjoying it at the moment. 

"I have great guys alongside me in Eoghan Walsh and my father-in-law Pat Downey. Both with great knowledge of the game. And both have brought so much to the squad this season.

“It is hugely important that both junior and senior sides are competing for top honours. It is a club that had several teams who had great success which is what we will be hoping to achieve. 

"We have been lucky enough throughout the season we have been able to field very strong teams and long may that continue.” 

While league results have been going great for the Ballyphehane outfit, a good run in the cup was also important for Corcoran. 

Reaching the last 32 in the Munster junior cup was a great achievement for the club but sadly the run game to an end last weekend.

Casement took on Villa of Waterford in the last 32 of the FAI Munster junior cup. 

And while it was an achievement to reach that stage of the competition, they came up against a very strong side and suffered a heavy defeat but one Corcoran believes the side will learn a lot from.

“We were beaten by the better team who were truly a joy to watch at times as their fitness levels and creativity was incredible. 

"Our lads didn't let their heads drop and I hope they can learn from playing up against that standard of football as it will only stand to them. 

"I expect this side to potentially go on and win the Munster Junior Cup given the caliber of players that they have.

“Up next for us is Macroom this weekend in the league where we will be hoping to get back to winning ways. 

"I am expecting a physical battle against a good country side, it’s always tough to go down to places like this as they really give it all they got so we will need to make sure we go down there with the right attitude and keep our aim of a league title going.”

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