Tuesday 12 December 2017

Towell: We will not sit back on win

Dundalk promise strong finish

Dundalk manager Stephen Kenny and Richie Towell celebrate after their draw with Shamrock Rovers that secured the league title
Dundalk manager Stephen Kenny and Richie Towell celebrate after their draw with Shamrock Rovers that secured the league title

Their status as the best team in Ireland clearly established with their back-to-back title success, Dundalk have promised the club's fans - and the rest of the league - that they have no plans to sit back and just wallow in glory and enjoy the rest of the season.

The crop of 2015 under Stephen Kenny became the first side in Dundalk's history to retain a league title, and they have also become the first club from outside Dublin to manager back-to-back leagues since 1973, when Waterford managed that feat.

The league was won on Friday night, as a 1-1 draw away to Shamrock Rovers, combined to Cork City's failure to win away to Drogheda United, meant that Dundalk could not be caught.

They have three league game to enjoy and next Friday's home tie with Galway United will be party time, the night when Dundalk are handed the league title which never really left their grasp.

They have another game to relish as well, next month's FAI Cup final clash with Cork and for leading scorer and the team's talisman, Richie Towell, the rest of the season will not be a matter of easing off.

"We won't relent now and I want to win all of our remaining games. We have Galway next week, then Cork and Bray before going into the FAI Cup final, so we will have to make sure we are ready," said Towell, the Dundalk hero on Friday night in Tallaght as his equalising goal, added to that draw for Cork, swung the title their way.

"I'm really excited now about the possibility of doing the league and cup double.

"I love Dundalk and I have made that very clear since the first day I've came here. I love everything about this club, the fans, the manager and my team-mates," added Towell, now out of contract with Dundalk, though the Tallaght man is on the record as saying he will not sign for another club in Ireland if a move back to the UK fails to come off.

"Winning back-to-back titles is a difficult thing to do, especially for a provincial team, but we have managed to put together a brilliant team and they done themselves proud. Everything has been outstanding, their discipline, their training and their performances.

"Last season was quite dramatic to win it at the end of the season in shoot-out in the second-half, this time we won it with a few matches to spare which is rare enough and we'll take it.

"It's a different way of winning it but none the less important," added Towell.

The the build-up to last weekend. the talk in the Dundalk camp was not one rubbing their rivals' noses in it by landing the title on Shamrock Rovers' home ground, that winning was all that mattered.

They didn't win the game in the end and needed a late goal from Towell to do it, as a Danny North goal early on had put Rovers ahead.

It allowed Kenny's side win back the league with just one defeat, a remarkable record.

"It was important not to lose as we have only lost once all season, we're not really happy about that loss to Bohemians, it's a game we missed a lot of chances in," added Towell.

"It's one defeat we didn't want but it's still a tremendous record.

"So we didn't want to lose against Shamrock Rovers and the fact that the other game was a draw meant that we have it won the league."

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