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Leitrim captain Mícheál McWeeney in Connacht Senior Football Championship action against New York last year.
Leitrim captain Mícheál McWeeney in Connacht Senior Football Championship action against New York last year.

Mícheál McWeeney enjoying encouraging Leitrim stint


By Cian O'Connell

A Games Promotion Officer with the Erin go Bragh club in Dublin, Leitrim captain Mícheál McWeeney has enjoyed a most satisfying start to 2019.

Under Terry Hyland's guidance Leitrim earned promotion from Division Four of the Allianz Football League and also got a much coveted game at Croke Park.

While that decider ended in defeat to Derry it still has been an encouraging stint for Leitrim, who face Roscommon in the Connacht Senior Football Championship at Dr Hyde Park on Sunday.

"Yeah it was great," McWeeney admits. "I work up in Dublin so I missed out on a lot of it back home. "When I came back at weekends, there was a great atmosphere around. Everyone wanted to grab you for a few seconds and talk about it, it was leading into something big that hadn't happened for Leitrim for the last number of years so yeah it was a great occasion for all the supporters."

Leitrim's desire for football is always something which has struck McWeeney. "Not taken aback, they're just crying out for success - the supporters," McWeeney says.

"You see it through the National League, through the games when they were building momentum, especially the one-point wins we were getting, a lot of the games you could see the support that was happening on the road coming to games and there was always a great crowd in Páirc Sean, but it was away trips, you were talking about the buses that were coming. That was what you were taking back."

Leitrim supporters at Croke Park for the Allianz Football League Division Four Final.
Leitrim supporters at Croke Park for the Allianz Football League Division Four Final.

The increased interest and positivity also helped Leitrim secure some dramatic late comeback victories allied to Hyland's contribution.

"Probably more down to Terry, the management he brought in with him, the backroom team," McWeeney remarks when asked what the late rallies could be put down to.

"It was just different. Talking at half-time and that, what he tweaked we never tweaked beforehand. "He was just bringing in a bit of a winning mentality with him from Cavan, that's all we were looking for, some bit of leadership."

That is what McWeeney has shown with Leitrim and he is also enjoying working as a GPO with Erin go Bragh. "Yeah well you're looking at that one area that I'm looking at that is a very small club but probably has nearly half the population of Leitrim," McWeeney states.

"It's crazy the numbers. But at the end of the day we don't look at excuses like that, we just focus on what we're able to have, what resources we have and look it, it's working well for us so far this year."

That is most certainly the case.

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