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Larne boss Tiernan Lynch scoops third Manager of the Month title in a row to join elite list

 

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Tiernan Lynch has become only the fourth boss to win three successive NIFWA Manager of the Month awards.

Tiernan Lynch has become only the fourth boss to win three successive NIFWA Manager of the Month awards.

Silver lining: Larne skipper Jeff Hughes and Fuad Sule celebrate at the County Antrim Shield Final

Silver lining: Larne skipper Jeff Hughes and Fuad Sule celebrate at the County Antrim Shield Final

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Tiernan Lynch has become only the fourth boss to win three successive NIFWA Manager of the Month awards.

Larne boss Tiernan Lynch has warmly welcomed Covid-19 testing in the Irish League at a time when the virus is ripping through the country.

Danske Bank Premiership clubs have worked tirelessly to make their stadiums as safe as possible and the emergence of testing before the league resumes on January 23 has allayed some fears sparked by outbreaks.

Funded by the NI Football League and the Irish FA, testing will continue initially for four weeks with a review after three.

"Anything that gets our game going again in a safe environment I am absolutely all for," said Lynch.

"Football is my livelihood but it is only a game. I have a daughter (Nila) who falls in the vulnerable category and she is way more important to me than football.

"Ultimately, people's lives were and are at risk, and that has to come first. If we can make football more safe, I'm 100% behind it."

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The Northern Ireland Football League felt a two-week break was the necessary response to the ongoing pandemic and it is hoped that testing will allow more games to be played.

"I would be hopeful that we can come out of this crisis, particularly when the vaccine is rolled out," added Lynch.

"The new few weeks are very important and we will have to see how it goes. People are realising what we took for granted."

Lynch is celebrating after being named NIFWA Manager of the Month for the third month in a row. By adding the Football Writers' December award to his collection, Lynch becomes only the fourth manager in history to complete the hat-trick.

He follows in the footsteps of the late Tommy Breslin, David Jeffrey - who both completed the feat on two separate occasions - and Oran Kearney.

A delighted Lynch added: "It's an honour to join an exclusive club that includes men like Tommy, Oran and David. I'd like to thank the football writers for picking me once again.

"However, at Larne we don't believe in individual awards. We win or lose as a team, so this award belongs to all the players and my coaching staff.

"I never play down these awards but I understand the importance of keeping your feet on the ground and remaining humble. You can get carried away and I don't want to let that happen. Everything we achieve at Larne is a collective effort. A lot of work goes on behind the scenes and those people genuinely deserve all the rewards they get.

"We talk a lot about working harder every day and that's still our mindset."

In December, Larne ended their 33-year wait for a senior trophy by beating Glentoran in the County Antrim Shield final.

The Invermen also claimed a memorable 3-1 win over Linfield and a 2-1 victory against Glenavon before Covid restrictions brought the month to a premature end.

Reflecting on the Shield win, Lynch said: "It was a very special night. My hope is it will serve as a launchpad for further success. However, I am aware that at the end of the season we will be judged on what happens in the next four months rather than the last four months."


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