Ben Kennedy hoping to bag first senior medal

There’s no shortage of experience in the Crusaders dressing room.

By Steven Crawford
Saturday, 7th May 2022, 7:00 am

It’s packed full of players who have been there, done it and have the medals to prove it.

For some though today’s Irish Cup final is an opportunity to win a first senior medal.

Ben Kennedy, who has been one of the Crues shinning lights this season, is a case in point.

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Crusaders' Ben Kennedy

In fact the 25-year-old has to go all the way back to his early teenage years for his last medal win!

“I haven’t won a trophy since I was a teenager,” he said.

“You’re growing up playing for the best (youth) team at that time so you’re winning everything. I haven’t had that feeling since.

“I was at St Oliver Plunkett and we won two or three trophies a year. We had a very good side and had the likes of Levi Ives, Stephen Fallon and Seanan Foster.

“We had Stevie Lynch and Jim Magilton taking us, we played some nice football and won a lot of trophies. They were really good times.

“I didn’t lose many games with Plunketts and then I went to England and you’re losing 3-0 and you’re thinking ‘jeeze, what’s going on?’

“That’s my aim over the next few years, to try and win as many trophies as I can in this country.”

Kennedy is delighted to have so many experienced campaigners alongside him.

For one of them, Declan Caddell, this will be his last appearance for the Crues today as he hangs his boots up afterwards, and Kennedy paid tribute to his team-mate.

“Deccy is retiring and hopefully it would be a good send-off for him if we could lift the Irish Cup in his final game with the club,” he said.

“It would be a big thing for him to end on that note and it’s also great that he’s going to say in and around the club in his new role.

“He’s a well-liked and popular figure in the changing room so hopefully it’s a good send-off for him and his family.

“We want to do that for Deccy but we also want to do it for each other.

“We have improved on last year and we want to win something.

“I’m lucky to be in a changing room with a lot of players who have been there, done that and the likes of Billy (Joe) never shuts up about what he has won!

“Those boys have experienced this all before and should be proud of what they have achieved. It’s something I want to do in this league and win as many trophies as they have.”