Do You Know The Way To Richmond Park (Part I)
- Sat, May 09, 2015 @ 12:30
Musician Greg Clifford has released a new song this week about his favourite football club - he speaks to stpatsfc.com about all things Saints...
You can listen to the song here: Do You Know The Way To Richmond Park?
How long have you been a Saints fan?
My first full season as an active supporter, attending both home and away games, was the 1997-98 campaign. I had caught the second half of the 1996-97 season, however it ended disappointingly with Pats missing out on an Intertoto Cup spot. But I was full-blown bitten by the bug and loved that there was a football team right on my doorstep in Inchicore.
What do you remember about those years?
In 1997 an extremely passionate and exuberant Pat Dolan sought change and success. He signed up Molloy, Hawkins and Morgan who were part of Brian Kerr's successful Irish side, who had finished 3rd in the 1997 World Youth Championships in Malasyia. Dolan also brought in a full colour A4 programme, which looked the business.
Any good memories of players?
Well, notable additions to the Pats squad that season included Trevor Wood and Ian Gilzean, who scored a hat-trick on his debut away to Sligo. Another memory worth noting is that live TV came to Richmond Park for the first time in October 1997, in which we hosted Bohemians. Although the game finished nil-nil it was a significant moment in League Of Ireland exposure and coverage for us.
It has to be winning the 97-98 league in Buckley Park away to Kilkenny City. Snatching the league from Shelbourne's grasp was ridiculously sweet. We travelled there needing the 3 points and hoping Shels came undone away to Dundalk. Shels lost 2-1, but we made hard work of it. After a bombardment on Kilkenny's goal mouth, we finally got our reward 10 minutes from time as captain fantastic Eddie Gormley scored the most glorious scuffed-deflected effort of all time, cue pitch invasion!
What about the current team?
In recent years it cannot be overstated how well Liam Buckley has done. He has restored pride and cultivated a fantastic rapport between fans and staff. He has brought stability to our squad too in what is usually a season long contract, merry-go-round league. He wants the game played in an entertaining and pure manner, which culminated in us being crowned deserved champions in 2013. He will also of course go down in history as being the Saints gaffer who finally broke the FAI Cup hoodoo and the European runs and nights are also special occasions.
Favourite player now?
Conan Byrne - no stranger to scoring important goals or providing assists. He is a cult hero in my book! Brennan and Forrester are mercurial sorts but when on form are a joy to watch. Bermo is another standout player for me. He is a genuine club legend at this stage and is for sure in my top Saints 11 of all time. Special mention must also go to me old mate Brendan Clarke, who must be fast approaching his testimonial season at the club [big laugh].
Favourite all-time players?
Ozo, Eddie Gormley and Charles Mbabazi Livingstone. Keith Fahey had fantastic moments in a Pats shirt, so too did the likes of Colm Foley and Darragh Maguire. I've also fond memories of Martin Reilly and the likes of Packie Lynch.
Views on club values?
There is a fantastic community spirit here at St Patrick's Athletic. We have some wonderful fans and great volunteers who help keep the club ticking over. There have been times the club could have folded but the Saints troops rallied and preserved our past, present and future. It's also wonderful to see Liam Buckley and Garrett Kelleher embrace the clubs tradition and values too. It is a massive pity we don't get higher attendances, but hopefully the "Do You Know The Way To Richmond Park" campaign succeeds.
Football and music...does it work?
There have been some barmy releases over the years for sure#33 Accompanied with some questionable moves and dance routines. I recall Paul Gascoigne's "Fog On The Tyne". He is like Shaun Ryder and John Cooper Clarke gone proper wrong ha. Creditability goes out the window with these kinds of projects. You have to embrace the cheese and ready yourself for the inevitable stick.
What do football and music mean to you?
Football and music are two of my most loved things in life and it was an interesting challenge to combine the two. When writing this song, I didn't take myself too seriously, got stuck in and attempted to forge a balance between light-hearted accessibility and musical integrity. I'm not sure I've conjured up the ultimate blue print for success in this hybrid field but I'm quite pleased with my composition [editor's note: the fans are pleased too as it's getting a great reaction].
to read the rest of the interview.