Some say you should start a year as you mean to go on. For St. Patrick's Athletic they’ve started the year how they finished the previous, picking up awards.
Goalkeeper Brendan Clarke and manager Liam Buckley were honoured on Friday night at the SWAI Awards banquet with Goalkeeper and Personality of the Year respectively.
Buckley who led his side to a their first League of Ireland title since 1999 beat off five other nominees in new Derry City manager Roddy Collins, Dundalk manager Stephen Kenny, Richie Towell, Killian Brennan and Anto Flood.
The Award, which was created in 1961, is voted on by the members of the SWAI and aims to celebrate the best personalities in the League.
Now in his second spell with the Saints, Buckley enjoyed a fantastic year in 2012 but was determined to improve on that last season and his team delivered in style – winning the title for the second time under the Dubliner’s watch.
Brendan Clarke, a lifelong Pat’s fan, played a starring role for his side this year in leading them to the title.
Speaking at the presentation of the awards, Stephen Wheeler, Managing Director of Airtricity said:
“On behalf of Airtricity I’d like to extend our congratulations to our two very worthy winners from Inchicore, Liam Buckley and Brendan Clarke, and also to our superb selection of nominees for tonight’s awards. The past season has been a wonderful spectacle.
"It’s fitting that the Personality of the Year Award should go to Liam Buckley, whose achievement in guiding St. Pats to their first League Title since 1999 is made all the more special when you consider his 1996 League title success as a player with the same club.
“This is Airtricity’s fourth year as sponsors of the Personality of the Year Awards. These Awards allow us to honour the remarkable players and personalities whose flair, skill and gamesmanship have contributed to the overall passion that defines our domestic league.
"I’d also like to extend our thanks to everyone in our Airtricity League clubs – players, coaches, fans, administrators, and volunteers – all of whom contribute their time, energy and drive towards the development of Irish football.”