Liffey Wanderers will head to the promised land of LSL Sunday Senior football as champions following an emphatic 5-1 win over second-placed Swords Celtic.
Liffeys made it five promotions on the bounce with victory over Dublin Bus earlier this month – an incredible achievement for a club who went out of existence eight years ago.
It was fitting that two stalwarts of the club’s revival – Lee and Dylan Roche – were on the scoresheet having dropped down the leagues to join Liffeys when they reformed in 2013.
Lee Roche scored twice, one a stunning free kick that’s been widely shared on social media, while Gary Young and Paul Mooney were also on target in the win.
Manager John Young – who has overseen those five promotions – paid tribute to the players and the club officials who have made sacrifices to help them back to the top table of amateur ball.
“There were lads who dropped a lot of leagues to play for Liffeys,” Young told the Dublin Gazette.
“They played for Liffeys in the past and Liffeys folded for three years. When they came back, they said ‘whatever league you’re in, we’re with the club.’ They’ve reaped the rewards of their loyalty.
“We won’t always have great sides. We won’t always be winning leagues. But when you get cycles of not so great a team, that’s when your clubmen keep it going.
“St Pats CY have that, and I feel Liffeys are in that sphere now – whatever’s there, these lads will be there.”
The community spirit that’s been created on Pearse Street is summed up by the story of Croatian player Stipe Vujic, who came back on his holidays to line out during the run-in.
“This is the sort of club you have. This fella finished up, went over to Poland for his next job, had two weeks holiday and came back to Dublin and played three matches for us in the run-in.
“Hopefully he’ll be back in the summer if we’re having an end-of-season do to pick up a medal.”
That’s unlikely to be in Liffeys’ own clubhouse, but Young confirmed the club will be moving back into their old facility on City Quay.
“Liffeys had a clubhouse in by City Quay church and went out of it, for whatever reason, 20 years ago. The church have arranged that we’re getting it back
“It’s big news for the club to have our own clubhouse. We won’t get our own pitch – we’ll keep sharing Ringsend astro with CY, which we love – but to have our own clubhouse is a major plus.”