Passage super keeper on how the sport and the club saved her life

"I played with Passage all my life and I enjoyed every minute of it. They are a great club who do so much for the community and they deserve huge credit for keeping a lot of kids on the straight and narrow."
Passage super keeper on how the sport and the club saved her life

Passage team captain Louise Murphy with, on her left, her niece Lauren Murphy celebrate after their win in the Kevin Barry Cup final. Picture: Larry Cummins.

THEY say you need to be half mad to be a goalkeeper and having played with and against this girl throughout the years, the saying couldn’t be more true!

I say this in the nicest possible way ever as anybody who knows Louise Hourihane Murphy will say you couldn’t meet a nicer person. Yet on the pitch... wow she’s a different animal, and it’s what I admire so much about her.

She will take out any player, including her own teammates, who will try to invade her space inside the six-yard box. And isn’t this the type of keeper we all love to play with.

Murphy has played in goal for over a decade with her beloved Passage and at the weekend she played a key role in her side's win over Greenwood in the Kevin Barry Cup final.

She has many great qualities as a goalkeeper, brave, committed, vocal but more importantly, she has the hunger, drive and passion to do the best she can for her team, a club she feels indebted to.

We all play sport for different reasons. First and foremost like most youngsters, Murphy played for the love of the game but as the years went by, she found herself playing the game as a way of distracting herself from any troubles she had in life. 

Soccer, to Murphy was a saviour and here she tells us about her love for the game and the importance of it in her life.

“Soccer has saved my life for so many reasons and I’ll be forever grateful for that,” said Murphy.

“With my mental health and my addiction, having soccer always made me feel better because no matter what was going on in my life it was all forgotten about for 90 minutes when I crossed that white line. 

It made me feel a lot better in myself and because of that, sport was always a huge part of my life.

“I played with Passage all my life and I enjoyed every minute of it. They are a great club who do so much for the community and they deserve huge credit for keeping a lot of kids on the straight and narrow.” 

Murphy, like most, started as an outfield player and excelled through the years as a top striker which saw her represent Cork at senior level. By chance, she found herself in goal and has been there ever since.

“To be honest I had just finished a season where I was top goal scorer and Tina Murphy needed me to go in goal. I went in thinking it would be for a short time but that was over 10 years ago and I’ve been there ever since.” 

Passage celebrate after Laura Finlay scored to go 2-1 ahead of Greenwood on Saturday. Picture: Larry Cummins.
Passage celebrate after Laura Finlay scored to go 2-1 ahead of Greenwood on Saturday. Picture: Larry Cummins.

For the past number of years Murphy and her squad play in the First Division of the women’s local league. It hasn’t always been easy to field a team but having players like Murphy and most notably Alison Murphy, who have been so dedicated to the club, they've always managed to put a team together.

“Year in and year out we always struggled to fill a team but without Tina Murphy and Alison Murphy sorting it all out we wouldn't be where we are today.

“This season went very well for us as we have a very young side. We finished second in the league and we won the Kevin Barry Cup final on Saturday at St Colman’s Park which was a fantastic end to the season.

“A special thanks to Tina and John Murphy for getting us to the final and believing in us right from the start. 

I am very proud of the team as they showed nothing but heart and dignity throughout this season even when we were well out of games they never gave up.

“It was a tough game against Greenwood but it was also a strong performance from my team as they have shown all season.

THE RIGHT MIX

“We have a mix of talent, older and younger players but mostly young girls coming through. It’s been great to have my niece Lauren play alongside me this year. I have no doubt Passage senior ladies are going from strength to strength and I look forward to seeing them develop over the years. 

"To win the cup final was a brilliant end to the season and I was delighted to captain this great side.

“Without Tina, John, Alison and Edel Murphy, Passage senior ladies wouldn't be where we are today. The amount of time effort commitment and patience they have put in for years is outstanding I couldn't be more proud of the club I play for and the people in it.

“Passage soccer club means everything to me and that’s why I have remained at the club. It’s a huge honour for me to be still part of the club and I hope I have a number of years left in me yet.”

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