Limerick FC have showed their intent to progress in this season’s Premier Divison with the re-signing of former striker Dean Clarke.
Clarke played his football last year with Shamrock Rovers and only scored 3 times in 29 appearances for the Hoops.
“I’m happy to be back. I obviously had a great year here. We didn’t have a great finish, but I really enjoyed playing here and I thought I played some of my best football here so I’m looking forward to another year like that,” Clarke told LimerickFC.ie.
“It was a tough beginning but it was probably one of my favourite years ever in football, bar the end of it, because the team came through so well, we played some really good football. I enjoyed some of my best times here. I’m hoping I can hit the ground running when we start again.
“I went into Limerick not knowing a lot about the club so I didn’t know what to expect. I know the place quite well now. I know the city a lot better, I know where I’ll be living and I know the fans as well so that will make it a lot easier for me. I’m actually really excited about it because I know how good the buzz is around the team and the Markets Field, and how good the fans are, so that’s what I’m really looking forward to.
“I think all the lads have made it clear that they want to make a push for the top four. The lads obviously went close last year to winning a Cup and I know Martin is very interested in achieving that. I’d love to do that as well – I saw the buzz of the Cup final with a few thousand at the Markets Field. There’s a good team here so we may as well strive to be as ambitious as possible.”
He mentioned he was delighted to move back to the Munster side after his ‘learning curve’ at Shamrock Rovers.
“It was difficult to leave Limerick,” he admitted, “because I knew a lot of the lads were planning on staying. I had an awkward time where I had a lot of travelling coming up and I was leaving a couple of days after that Finn Harps playoff. I didn’t have that much time to make a decision on where to go because I wasn’t back until late December so I wanted to be straight back into it when I got back.
“I wanted to make sure I had something done before I went. I had to make the decision fast – I wouldn’t say I regretted it, because I learned a lot in the year at Rovers. I think I’ve become a better player from it and I think I’ve matured as well. It was a tough decision but it was great to see the lads have such a good year and hopefully I can become part of it again.
“I still spoke to the lads very regularly last season. Like anyone I always saw the scores and I knew how much the lads were enjoying themselves. It was great to see. It was kind of hard not to be a part of, because I still felt part of it even though I wasn’t. I’m looking to settle back in very quickly.”
Image Credit: RTE