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Wednesday 20 November 2019

We don't get credit that's due: Talbot

Bohs keeper reflects on great season

EURO GOAL: Bohemians players Danny Mandroiu (l) James Talbot (c) and Ross Tierney (r)
celebrate with fans at Richmond Park on Friday. Photo: SPORTSFILE
EURO GOAL: Bohemians players Danny Mandroiu (l) James Talbot (c) and Ross Tierney (r) celebrate with fans at Richmond Park on Friday. Photo: SPORTSFILE

Less than a year ago, the aim was pretty basic, to break into the senior team with Ballymun Kickhams and play in the Dublin senior championship.

Now, Bohemians goalkeeper James Talbot has another sort of target as the door to European football as opened up for him and his team-mates, Bohs securing a place in the Europa League for the first time since 2012.

"It's been an amazing year for me," says Talbot, who also had a spell in the senior Ireland squad.

" As soon as I came to the club I knew what I had signed up for. We have worked hard all year for this and it's deserved. I don't think we get enough credit as a club for what we have done this season on the budget we have.We're not full-time, a lot of the lads have to work but they come up and give their all in training.

"I don't know any player who wants to leave this club, everyone in that dressing room now wants to be there next season when we do play in Europe," he adds.

"The older lads have drilled into us what Europe means to Bohemians, the club was in tough times when the likes of Bucko (Keith Buckley) and Detser (Derek Pender) were here a few years ago, we knew if we had a chance to get Europe we couldn't waste it."

This time last year, Talbot had effectively turned his back on soccer, after a spell with Sunderland, and was focusing on GAA before Keith Long persuaded him to become a Gypsy.

"You could say I was going nowhere in terms of soccer, and the turnaround in my life is remarkable," Talbot says.

"I give Keith (Long) and Trevor (Croly) a lot of credit for that, the way Keith went about signing me and getting me to the club, and Chris Bennion, the goalkeeper coach, kept my head right.

"I can be a bit daft at times but he kept me straight.

"I did really want to give Ballymun Kickhams a go and get into their team and it was a bit heartbreaking to leave and join Bohs but with the way the season has gone I can't complain.

"I don't think my first season in the league could have gone much better for me. I am thankful when I go to bed every night, I have enjoyed success this year but a lot of people helped get me here, going back to Kickhams, Tolka Rovers, Home Farm," he added.

"And I don't care who we get in Europe. A few weeks ago it wasn't looking great as we were dropping points, we lost a few and it was a case of getting going again to make sure we got Europe, so we'll look forward to the draw in the summer."

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