In his first interview with stpatsfc.com since signing for the club a few weeks ago, new St Patrick's Athletic midfielder Lee Lynch spoke of his delight and honour to sign for the 2013 league champions.
The 22 year old, who was revealed as one of Pat's new signings at the 2013 Player of the Year awards a few weeks ago, joins the club after spending two seasons with Sligo Rovers. Speaking to stpatsfc.com, Lynch spoke of his happiness to join the club and the conversations he had with Saints' manager Liam Buckley which made up his mind to play in Inchicore next season.
“I'm absolutely delighted to have signed. I spoke with Liam a couple of times at the end of the season and for him to ask me to sign was a great honour. He told me he really liked the way I played and that he thinks I am suited the team,” Lynch revealed.
“I've always been a really big admirer of the way Pats play since I've been in the league. My game is just to get the ball down and play football. I'm a forward thinking player so I like to get on the ball and pass and move, so hopefully I can settle into the team's style of play and get a good few goals next season.”
Lynch's football career took off at the age of 16 when he joined English club West Bromwich Albion. The Limerick man played reserve football for the Baggies while also training with the first team. However after spending 3 years with West Brom without making an appearance for the first team, Lynch joined the Glenn Hoddle academy.
In the year he spent with Hoddle's academy, he secured a loan during that time with Spanish Liga B side Xerez CF. There Lynch developed his technical ability, where he claims himself that his time at the Spanish club improved his own game and ‘opened his eyes up to the European game.'
Ironically it was an unsuccessful trial with Dundee United that proved crucial in Lynch's career as despite failing to secure a contract, his performance in a friendly against Drogheda United caught the eye of Mick Cooke. The Boynesiders' manager immediately offered the midfielder a deal in July 2011, and Lynch proved to be an instant hit as he scored 4 goals in 14 appearances and was named Fan's Player of the Year at the end of the season.
In 2012, Lynch signed for Paul Cook's Sligo Rovers. In his time with the Bit O'Red, Lynch won both league and FAI Cup winner's medal in his two seasons.
Speaking of his success with Sligo, Lynch spoke of the many positive and fond recollections he has, though he did recall the awkward position he found himself within his first few weeks of signing for the club.
“Paul Cook had told me that he really liked the way I played and so I signed for Sligo which was great. But it was really unfortunate that 3 weeks after I'd signed, he went to England. However, I was only 19 at the time, so I was still delighted to be part of a great squad. I ended up learning a lot there from the likes of Joseph Ndo and Jason McGuinness as they kind of took me under their wing.”
“I'd a great time at Sligo. Looking back at my time there, I know now that I am kind of lucky to have won a league and FAI Cup medal already. Having spent two years at Sligo and talking to the likes of Raphaele Cretaro, he only won his first medal at the age of 29, so I'm lucky to already have those medals. But while I did really enjoy my time in Sligo, but it was time to move.”
Now Lynch is readying himself to represent the Saints in 2014 and when asked about his aims for the year ahead, the 22 year old was very clear in what his ambitions with his new club are.
“To sign and play for the league champions, it's something I've always wanted to do,” Lynch told stpatsfc.com.
“With Champions League football next year too, these are the reasons why I wanted to sign for the club. You can see that Liam has kept the main bulk of the players from last year and he's added to that as well. At the end of year do, I spoke to them all and they're all a good bunch of lads so I'm really looking forward to working with them all.”
“I'd just like to come in and make an impact for the team. I'm going to try play well for the team and try force my way into the starting eleven - that's what I'm hoping to do. It would be great to see if we could win the league again as it's very hard to retain the league – to do that with St Pat's though would be brilliant.”