SOCCER: PHILLY GORMAN INTERVIEW
By Daire Walsh
It is more than two months since he played his final game for Athlone Town, but Brownstown native Philly Gorman is still undecided about whether he will resume his playing career in 2016.
He has received offers from a number of clubs, but now that he is 34 years of age (and has welcomed a new addition to his household), he will take some more time over the Christmas period before finally make a decision on his future.
“I’m still up in the air to be honest. I have a few offers that are on the table, but I’m 34 now and we’ve another new baby there in the house, so we’re just manic here,” Gorman remarked.
“I told a few offers that I’ve had, that I was going to take until Christmas.
“Whether I was thinking of retiring or not, [or] if I was going to give it another year. I’m still kind of contemplating, going over in my head, if I’m going to go back now. That’s where I’m at, at the moment. I’m still undecided to be honest.”
In relation to his final season with Athlone, Gorman was disappointed with the way the season developed (they finished in fifth place on their return to the Airtricity League First Division), although he was generally pleased with own form – which saw him scoring 12 goals in all competitions.
“Disappointed with how this season went, to be honest. At the start of the season, I kind of had expectations, especially with the squad that we assembled, that we would have had a good chance of winning the division.”
“But for whatever reason things panned out [the way they did]. It was disappointing the way the season went, and some of the off-field things were disappointing as well.”
“My own form was good. I had probably a few injuries more so than the previous season, so it kind of curtailed the amount of games I played.
“I think I started 19 league games, and scored 10. Scored two in the cup, so I was happy with the amount of goals that I scored.”
However, in spite of the frustrations that came with their underwhelming 2015 campaign, Gorman looks back fondly on his time with the Westmeath club.
“Yeah, I had probably three of my best years – well, not last year – but I’ve had probably some of my best form in my career since I went there. The first year was brilliant, winning the league, and things like that. I really enjoyed my time down there. The fans were very good to me from day one really.”
“I don’t know, it just did click after a few games down there. I scored more goals per games down there than I have anywhere else. I will always have a place in my heart for the club.”
Gorman spent time with Kildare County during their stint in the League of Ireland, and he also had a spell with Newbridge Town in 2011. Indeed, he still keeps in touch with his old club-mates in Newbridge, and will be making an appearance in the club at the end of this month.
“I have a lot of friends involved, even playing in Newbridge Town. One of them was actually on to me last week to go down and train with them, and I might do that after Christmas.”
“I’m playing a game on the 28th actually. Brian Walsh and a few of the older members, a few ex-players, have asked me to play in that. I do, I keep in touch with a lot of the guys down there,” Gorman added.