Shamrock Rovers captain Ronan Finn wants Sunday’s FAI Cup final victory to be the stepping stone towards the Hoops challenging Dundalk for the league title next season.
While the Tallaght men finished 11 points off the Lilywhites in the league this season, their first piece of silverware under Stephen Bradley will hopefully lead to bigger things for them.
“Only time will tell,” Finn said when asked about could it lead to a title challenge next year.
“That has to be the aim but now we just want to enjoy winning the Cup.
“It’s a monumental moment because when you look at the fans you can see what it means to them.
“It probably wasn’t the most pretty game but Cup finals tend to be like that. We maybe didn’t play our best and maybe Dundalk didn’t play their minds but it’s just about getting over the line.”
Finn praised his old club for their never say die attitude after Michael Duffy’s stoppage time goal took the game to extra-time after it had looked like Aaron McEneff’s 89th minute penalty had won it for them.
“It was a hell of a finish, credit to him,” he said of Duffy.
“I thought he was quiet all game but a player like that has got that in his locker. He’s a really top player but when it goes in you just have to believe and rally the troops and believe that we can still stay in it. Extra-time was nip and tuck, there wasn’t much in it.
“I thought overall we shaded it but Dundalk are such a strong team. It’s never over until it’s over with them.
“The success at Dundalk over the past few years has been admirable. They’re such a top team and we knew coming here today that we had to be at our best but the way the games have gone against Dundalk this season, we tend to have more possession and they’re so good on the counter so it was almost like a game of chess at times. We came out tonight on top. The game finished as a draw as a couple have over the last few years but when it comes down to penalties it’s a bit of a lottery but I think we deserved silverware.
“I think we’ve played really good football and been knocking on the door. Credit to Dundalk, they put together a hell of season, but for us this is huge and about us winning,” said Finn.