Kearney let me prove my quality, says Matthew Snoddy
Matthew Snoddy has described the transformation in his career as 'unbelievable'.
And the Crusaders midfielder is putting his turnaround partly down to Coleraine manager Oran Kearney.
A loan spell with the Bannsiders last season got Snoddy the regular football that he craved and he will face them at Seaview tonight (7.45pm) having played in all 19 of the Crues' Premiership outings this season.
"Going to Coleraine was the best decision I ever made," said Snoddy.
"I was able to go there and prove to myself that I could play every week in the Premiership.
"I always believed that I could, but I needed to go there and show it.
"It never entered my head that I wouldn't come back to Crusaders, but I think the manager might have been concerned about that because I had to push him to let me go out on loan - I spoke to him about it four or five times.
"Had I gone there and not done well then I could have found it hard to come back and get into the team at Crusaders, but I started the first game of the season and four months on I have played every game.
"It's unbelievable really from where I was a year ago.
"I missed out on winning the league, but I probably wouldn't have played that much anyway if I had stayed, but the incentive for me this season is to get my hands on a league medal."
Like Snoddy, Coleraine have been transformed this season. From being in the bottom six last campaign, they were second in the table just a couple of weeks ago after putting a 10-match unbeaten run together in the league.
Their form is no shock to Snoddy.
"I told people that Coleraine's position last season was not reflective of the quality of players they had at the club," he said.
"They have a good squad and their midfield is one of the strongest in the league.
"Oran Kearney is a top coach and he gave me the opportunity that I needed last season.
"I am grateful for that. I wouldn't be in the position I am now without that opportunity."