Drogheda United FC

Interview Conducted by Paul Holland for DUFC v Shamrock Rovers Match Programme - 2nd March 2012

Drogheda United talks to Derek Prendergast

Centre-half Derek Prendergast signed for Drogheda United from Bray Wanderers. A commanding presence in the air, Derek has already scored two goals in five pre-season games. In 2009 the defender was presented with the Intermediate Player of the Year by Giovanni Trapattoni, after an outstanding season with Bangor Celtic.

You had an excellent season with Bray Wanderers last season and surprised everybody by beating Shamrock Rovers on two occasions!
Yes we had a great run at one stage and impressed a lot of people by climbing to second place in the League table for a while. Every club likes to beat the top teams and, to be fair, we got the tactics right on both occasions.

A lot of players have left Bray since last season. Why did you not stay on?
Players were very happy with the set-up there with Pat Devlin as manager and Keith Long as coach. However off the pitch the finances were not stable and with the way the economy is nowadays, players have to consider their own financial security.

How would you rate the training facilities out in Mosney?
For me the facilities are top-class. The training over the pre-season has been most enjoyable. We have great variety in training- a well-equipped gym, excellent grass pitches and the beach nearby.

Gerard Kelly is a new addition to the coaching staff, specialising in fitness.
Well his nickname says it all. He’s known as Sergeant Slaughter! It’s tough going but it’s paying off already as we have finished strongly in all of our pre-season games. In the five pre-season games we have finished each game much stronger than the opposition.

Pat Devlin seems to have improved considerably as a manager. He managed Drogheda United back in 1993 /94 and was forced to resign after only 14 months!
Well nowadays Pat is a fantastic man-manager, a brilliant motivator. His team talks make you want to go to war for him! Keith Long is an outstanding coach and made a huge difference tactically in the two wins against Rovers.

Stephen Kenny has been doing his homework for tonight’s game, travelling to Drogheda twice to check us out in the two recent friendlies against Dundalk and Limerick.
Yes he seems to leave no stone unturned! We’re going to give it our best shot tonight, even if we have so many players unavailable. It’s a good chance for everyone to stake a claim for a regular place in the team.

Stephen must be delighted that Drogheda’s three Brennan brothers are suspended for tonight’s game! Ryan, Gavin and Sean were the outstanding players on the pitch against Limerick’s high profile players last Saturday.
They are the same in training! It can be frustrating trying to get the ball back off them! The way Ryan was rolling the ball with his studs up the line against Limerick was something else.

Their dad, Eddie Brennan, was a tricky winger with Northside Blues and Boyne Rovers and played well into his forties! It looks like the football tradition is set to continue, with the birth last week of another Brennan!
Yes, the whole squad is thrilled for Gavin and Leanne on the birth of their baby boy, Bobby. Who would want to bet against Bobby following in his family’s footsteps and lining out for Drogheda United!

You’re already chipping in with a few goals yourself!
Yes I’m happy to have scored two goals in our five games so far, one against Longford Town in a 1-1 draw and the other last Saturday in another 1-1 draw. I’m joint top scorer with Peter Hynes!

You played with Stella Maris and Maryland Boys as a youngster. Graham Gartland and Alan McNally also played with Maryland. Now you find yourself partnering Alan in defence and playing against Garto tonight!
That’s right- a small world indeed. Alan started off as a striker back then and still manages to pull off a few overhead kicks in training!

Away from football, what kind of hobbies do you have?
I’ve always loved travelling and any chance I get I like to travel abroad. I spent a year travelling around Australia with my girlfriend, when I was 21.

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