Pete Mahon Talks To STPATSFC.COM

  • Wed, Aug 25, 2010 @ 16:06

When the Saints face Belgrove FC in the 4th round of the FAI Ford Cup on Friday, St Pat's boss Pete Mahon will be up against the club he once managed.

Pete took time out today to talk to ahead of the cup tie at Richmond Park (kick off 7.45pm).

Pete, how did you become manager of Belgrove?

To be honest I can thank Belgrove for getting me back into football, after I left Bohemians I was approached by Jackie Lyons from Belgrove and he asked me to manage their team.

At the time I felt I was finished with football so I said no, but he rang me again and asked me to come out and have a look at them which I did and I still said no.

But he was persistent, he kept calling me and eventually I agreed.

They were in the first division of the Leinster Senior League at the time and similar to this season at Pat's I brought in a whole new team and kept about 4 or 5 of their existing players.

We went on to win the League and the FAI Intermediate Cup and the Cup meant a lot to me as it was the one trophy I had missed out on with St Francis.

I went from Belgrove to UCD but part of me was very sad to leave Belgrove - they had got me back into football and in a way I had helped get them back up and running as a football club.

As Belgrove are the last remaining non Airtricity league side left in the competition would you ever see a team like St Francis going all the way to the final like they did in 1990?

No, I don't think we will see a non league team get that far again.

St Francis even in junior football were an exceptional side and I don't think we'll see their likes again.

There is just too much of a gap now, the change to summer football puts teams at a disadvantage to clubs like us in terms of match practice and fitness and I think the standard in our league with fulltime football has improved greatly in recent years.

That's not to say that cup shocks won't happen and we'll have to guard against that on Friday.

Belgrove had a great win against Avondale in the last round and are a very strong team.

With a number of clubs eyeing up the FAI Cup this year how special would it be for Pat's to make the final in the new Aviva Stadium?

I was involved in the first final in Landsdowne and that was a bit special.

There's only one “first” and knowing what the cup means to our supporters it would be a bit special.

Our goal at the start of the season was to try and win some silverware, we came close with the Setanta Cup and that is still our goal.

Going into this game you must be pleased with the late win over Sporting Final on Monday night?

We've scored a few times late on in games, against Bray recently and we had a disallowed goal late on against Rovers.

It shows how determined this team is not to be beaten.

People will expect us to win against Belgrove on Friday night but we will have to be prepared and certainly show them respect.

From my point of view, John Gill and myself must always ensure that our players are prepared mentally and physically as well as they can possibly be regardless of who we are playing.

We are certainly not in a position to show disrespect to any team.

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