AFTER Tummery Athletic were officially crowned Mercer League champions for the first time in the club’s 46-year history manager Ryan Hanna received an incredible surprise.
With the help of former player Brian McLaughlin, who now runs Carragher’s Bar in New York, Hanna and his players were sent messages of congratulations by a host of Liverpool legends including Carragher himself, Robbie Fowler, Steve Nichol, John Barnes, Phil Thompson and Graeme Souness.
Souness said, “Hi Ryan, Brian asked me to give you a ring. Congratulations on winning the league this year with Tummery. I believe you are a Liverpool supporter so you have had a fantastic year.
“You’re under pressure now because Liverpool are going to win it again and you’ll have to do the same.
“Congratulations. I believe on Saturday you’re having a celebration, have one on me pal. Good luck.”
The fact that someone went to such extraordinary lengths to make the celebrations that extra bit special highlights what a big deal it was for Tummery to finally land the biggest prize in Fermanagh and Western football.
After so many years of trying, so many false dawns and so many near misses, the Dromore outfit had finally got their hands on the Holy Grail.
That may only have been a few short weeks ago but Hanna, while acknowledging that the monkey is off the back, says winning the Division One crown is now history. He says the game face is back on as his team looks to defend the title.
“We are fully focused on September 19,” said the former Enniskillen Town player.
“Like any manager there have been some good things in pre-season and some not so good.
“All the boys who played last year were brilliant but last year is last year.
“Everything has been reset and lockdown has been good for some players. It’s a fresh start and we attack again. The monkey is off the back but last season is done now and it means nothing going forward.
“We need to go with the same impetus and same drive as last year, as if it’s our first one again.”
FULL STORY IN THE FERMANAGH AND WESTERN SEASON SUPPLEMENT IN YESTERDAY’S ULSTER HERALD
Posted: 7:19 pm September 18, 2020