WHILE it’s often said he could be playing at a higher level, enjoying football with College Corinthians Over 35 side and being able to juggle family and work life is much more important for club stalwart Ricky O’Sullivan.
Currently playing with the club's over 35 side, O’Sullivan has had an excellent career at Munster Senior League level where he has enjoyed a lot of success.
The 37-year-old garda and father of three, to Mathew, Daniel and Jack, tells us about his passion for football and the importance of being able to fit it into his hectic life.
“I am currently playing with Corinthians over 35s team and really enjoying the competitive games and high standard,” said O’Sullivan.
“It’s great to play alongside some Corinthians legends and my own twin brother Mark 'Boz' O’Sullivan and buddy Pete Moreland there also.
“My older brother Dave Sull was my biggest supporter and was the reason myself and my twin were kicking footballs from the day we could walk.
“I was involved in the first-ever Corinthians boys team to win a trophy as a schoolboy club when we won the U11 league in ’95 and I went on to play about 10 years with College Corinthians seniors from ’07 to ’17 and played Junior for two years after, but a growing family and slowing down legs brought on retirement.
“We had some great years and memories that will live with me forever.
“We got to the semi-final of the intermediate cup with Corinthians in 2016 and we were very unlucky not to make it to the final, that’s about the biggest game I was ever involved in.
“Tadgh O’Connell and Joe Gamble trained the team and we were taking soccer as seriously as I could ever imagine at the time.
However serious our training sessions were, I was playing with the 'Corinthians Boys' that I had grown up with, so it was always a lot of fun too.
“Playing with the likes of my buddies, Peter Moreland, Richie Cronin and Chris Madden always made things more enjoyable.
“I had a year stint with UCC soccer team after finishing school and a couple of very enjoyable and successful years with Douglas Hall Juniors for a period.
“Even though I played MSL Senior Premier for a good few years, my most enjoyable season I can recall is when our Corinthians senior team won the First Division in 2010-'11. We had a great bunch of lads playing and it was great bringing the club back up to the Premier Division, where they’ve been ever since."
O’Sullivan had a cancer scare in 2020 so life is a lot more precious to him and spending time with family is paramount. But being able to play football as well means a lot to him.
“I’d love nothing more than to be playing up in Corinthians Park, realistically Junior level would be achievable if I had more time.
“With three small boys under five and my shift work job as a garda in Kinsale, Monday nights with the over 35s league is keeping me involved with the club.
“Over 35s is very enjoyable and competitive. I’d love if it was on every single Monday night but I understand its hard for lads to continue the commitment.
“We have a very good mix of experienced lads and a good crop of 35-40-year-old guys who add a bit of energy. Andrew (Mousey) is a great guy and has things very well run and organised up there.
“My eldest boy Matthew has started Corinthians U6s this year under the expert guidance of Neil Daly so I hope to help him out this year.
I look forward to having my boys, Matthew, Daniel and Jack wear the Blue/White of Corinthians for many years to come.
“I’m definitely looking to give back because I got so much out of Cork soccer myself. It’s a privilege to have played Munster Senior League, especially with College Corinthians over the past 20 years.
“I feel strongly that sport is so important for young people to be involved in, as it is essential for promoting positive mental health.
“I look forward to coaching and contributing to the guidance of the next generation of future stars in the club.”