"Irish football is back on the map" - Daryl Horgan praises teammates as he accepts Player of the Month award

The Dundalk winger has produced some stunning performances this year in both the league and in Europe

Daryl Horgan

Image: Youtube

Dundalk midfielder Daryl Horgan praised his teammates and manager Stephen Kenny as he accepted the the SSE Airtricity League Player of the Month award today.  

Horgan, who scored both goals in Dundalk's crunch tie with Cork City on Tuesday night, said his progression was symptomatic of that of the team's development and cited big games in Europe as the reason his form has been so good.

Dundalk are four points clear at the top of the league as they go in search of back to back league titles and will meet Cork City in the FAI Cup final as Kenny continues his assault on domestic titles.

The club have also enjoyed unprecedented success in the Europa League becoming the first Irish team to pick up a point and then the first Irish team to win the group stages of he competition.

"It's nice to get that recognition but obviously the team ones are the most important," he said while accepting the award. "At the end of the season you don't sit down and count your 'Player of the Months' or whatever along those lines. 

"You count your leagues, cups and big nights in Europe. That's what it's been all about for us. If these come along they are great but they're not the be all and end all as long as we're winning games and competitions, that's all that really matters."

Horgan got the assist for Ciaran Kilduff's winning goal against Maccabi Tel-Aviv at Tallaght Stadium and he says that the win over the Israeli side was the highlight of their run.

"The Tel-Aviv one was the best one. It was a special night. The atmosphere in Tallaght was absolutely incredible and I thought as a team performance it was one of our best ones ever. 

"We looked really solid and really dangerous, we probably could have won the game by a bit more. That was a team littered with internationals. The [AZ] Alkmaar game was another one which was fantastic but to get the win on the board was special.

"It's not just been me progressing, it's been a team [progression] and we've evolved as a team. We've had to deal with losses and stronger and stronger which is a sign of the character in the squad.

"My performance can as well as the team are playing. You see it from the Cork game the other night, it was two great runs from Patrick McEleney and David McMillan that opened up that space. That's just their cuteness and that intelligence to play with players like that it definitely helps and it's how my game has come along." 

On Stephen Kenny he said: "He's got a certain philosophy and a way of doing things. Players have bought into that, the club has bought into that. He's captured the imagination of the whole Dundalk town and of Ireland in a sense. Irish football is back on the map."