|Posted by www.colinvalleyfc.co.uk on May 16, 2010 at 3:19 PM|
(No! This is not Star Wars Episode 4 - It's Colin Valley Football Club: Season 2009/10)
What a Season! What a Year! What a Squad! What a Team(Management)! What a Pitch! What a Ground! What pure f***ing joy to be at a club finally moving in the right direction! That's right - make no mistake about it - this was a Great Season for our emerging Football Club - and i'll tell you why.
A New Beginning
It was a season of growth, a season of learning, a season of making mistakes - more importantly of correcting them and learning from them. It was a season of fitness, of new blood, a season of fresh ideas, a season of excitement but maybe most importantly of all - as our Treasurer Mr Fay likes to put it, it was a season of Progression.
That's what this season has been for Colin Valley FC and it's players. It's been the dawn of a new era for us all, one where we've had to learn and grow, shape and build, fail and rise to try again - and to echo the opening words of Episode 4 of George Lucas' most famous works, it was indeed without a shadow of a doubt - A New Beginning!
From for once having a proper belly-busting, sick inducing pre-season (ask Bensy lol) - to taking Kilmore Rec (this season Steel and Sons Cup Winners) all the way to extra time in an Epic 4-3 Clarence Cup tie; From taking part in gruelling tuesday and thursday night training sessions on our new state of the art 3g pitch - to seeing 30 yard screamers flying into the net from all areas of the pitch from the likes of Gavin McArdle and John Burns throughout the season; From slugging out a bruising and enthralling 4-4 opening day draw away to Portavogie Rangers down in the aptly named "fish bowl" - to hammering 5 past a hapless Iveagh UTD team in the Quarters Finals of the Cochrane and Corry Cup on home soil: From having our squad grow by over 30 new players at the start of the campaign - to seeing our newly formed reserve team clinch promotion on the last day of the season against hated rivals St Pats; From witnessing the opening of our pride and joy, New Valley Park - to seeing us thump 9 past Co. Down Rangers on the last day of the league - this was a season not to be forgotten or slighted at in the least. In the words one Ciaran Quinn - "No Doubt"- this was a resurgent season in the Clubs history, and now it's everybodys responsibility to keep that resurgence going!
Just missed out!
The only thing missing from our season in the end was indeed that ellusive piece of silverware that we had all been craving so bad. Yet with all the new talent emerging into the Amateur League 2c Division this season it was always going to be a big ask! Still - but for some injuries to key players at bad times and some profligate waste in front of goals, we could have made the season even better.If the reserves had been able to just scrape one more win in 3F then we would have had a Championship Trophy to celebrate - hopefully next season we can go one better than Runners Up medals!!
People will look back on the games against St Theresa's, Plunkett and Ballynahinch for the first team - and for the Reserves, points lost against Kelvin and Portavogie and think "What If....", "If only...." or "thats the one that got away",... and although they'd be correct in their thinking - well there were other points gained and matches won in similar circumstances weren't there??? Think of the 1st teams terrific 1-0 away win against Suffolk swifts in the heart of the season when the whole team fought like demons against a wind assisted 45 mins of severe and butal pressure. Think of the stirring "no surrender" style home wins against Ballynahinch and St Theresa's when we had to play with 10 or even 9 men for most of the match. Or for the reserves think of the character building comeback against Portavogie on our own pitch when we came back from an early goal to hold out for a telling 2-1 win, or the fantastic away win against St Theresa's first team when they threw all and the kitchen sink at us in the 2nd half trying to cancel out Damian McNama's 5th minute opener. It was results and performances like these that we need to remember and focus on, we need to allow these experiences and not the bad ones to define our season - it's results like these which could see us finally become the club we all aspire to be next season, one celebrating silverware at the end of a long and hard, yet rewarding season. If we take the positives from this season - and there are a lot to take - then it can and will hold us all in good stead for an even better campaign next time around!!
You only have to look around the club and what we now have to offer to see the true potential here. We have the set up and the tools to make it work - a great pitch, our own training facility, a hard working back bone to the club, enough loyal and experienced older players to guide us through hard games and tough periods. A management team who eat and breathe Colin Valley FC so much that they have it bleeding through their very pores!! With established players like Dunlop, Mallon, Fay, Duff and Judge we have enough quality and strength in depth in our squad to hold us in good stead for the next 5 years to continue our current progress in the Amateur League. Then we have those younger players like Quinn, Benson, McArdle, McClenaghan, Mallon and McGonnell all pushing for 1st team places and vying to replace those established players. Even more importantly though we now have the potential to start bringing youth teams through our club so that in future years we have the players to replace those ending their careers.
But one huge thing we all need to realise is that just having the means and potential does not mean what you want comes easy. There is some very tough work ahead if we are to achieve all that we aim to. So with that in mind we must also face facts and see this for what it really is - just the beginning! The hardest work begins now - to keep the progression going year after year and buld on what we made real this season is going to be the hard part! We need commitment from those established players who want to still be here in 5 years time - we need people to step forward and say "hell yes - i'll do my part" so that others can follow in our steps and have the chance we had. If we can all aim to do that at least once for next season then young Quinn is again correct in his asessment: The Future is Bright - The Future is Valley!!!!