Ronnie McFall has achieved a remarkable first as he closes in on the 25th anniversary of his appointment as manager of Portadown.
McFall will officially celebrate his silver jubilee in a couple of weeks time, but already the Shamrock Park boss has won recognition from no lesser a body than the House of Commons.
Four years ago McFall was awarded an MBE in the New Year’s honours list, having been in charge of the Ports for 20 years and now his continued longevity and reign as the longest serving manager in Irish football is being acknowledged again.
Thanks to Upper Bann MP David Simpson — whose constituency covers Portadown town and the Shamrock Park area — McFall is due to receive the congratulations of the Government.
Early Day Motion 2405, moved by Simpson and published by Parliament, states: “That this House offers its congratulations to Mr Ronnie McFall MBE on his 25 years as Manager of Portadown football club.
“Notes that he is the longest serving manager in the Irish League; further notes his four Irish League championships, three Irish Cups and his five Manager of the Year awards among his numerous successes.
“Recognises and applauds the extensive youth and community work undertaken by Portadown FC during his tenure and wishes him continued success for the future.”
Portadown’s trip to McFall’s former club Glentoran on Saturday December 10 will see him bypass the 25 year mark, having first managed the team against Crusaders at Seaview in December 1986.
And as well as reflecting on two-and-a-half decades as manager of his hometown club, McFall is looking to the future as well, with the Ports currently second in the Carling Premiership as they attempt to win the league title for the fifth time in their history.
All of their previous four titles have been won under the management of the club’s former left-back McFall, who has lifted a total of 23 trophies during his time at Shamrock Park.
The Ports hopes of fighting Linfield all the way for the Gibson Cup have suffered a blow, however, with goalkeeper David Miskelly a doubt for Saturday’s Premiership trip to Lisburn Distillery, joining Matthew Tipton on the injured list.