It is a great club to be a part of - full of great people: Stephen Meaney back with the DrogsSat, Jan 12 2019
Striker Stephen Meaney has signed back with Drogheda United for a third season.
Meaney first signed for the Boynesiders in 2017 and was the standout player for their under-19 side that season.
He scored 18 times, winning both the under-19 Managers’ Player of the Year and the Players’ Player of the Year awards at the end of the season.
His performances for Derek Boyle’s side saw him make a breakthrough into the first team.
Meaney netted his first senior goal on his first start away to Finn Harps in the second last game of the season, as Drogheda beat Harps 3-2.
He re-signed for Drogheda in 2018 under new manager Tim Clancy and went on to make 11 appearances in all competitions before his season ended early due to injury.
He scored once before the injury, netting Drogheda’s third goal in a 3-2 victory over St. Mochta’s in the EA Sports Cup.
Speaking to extratime.ie, Meaney explained his reasons for returning for a third season with Drogheda.
“It’s good to be back,” said Meaney. “I decided to sign back with Drogheda because I love everything about the club.
“It’s a club that helped take my game to the next level and credit to Derek Boyle - he signed me for the 19s when I was a bit all over the place to be honest and my confidence was down. The club took me in and treated me very well,” Meaney explained.
“I also got my first start in the LOI with this club which I’m very grateful to Pete and Giller (John Gill) for.
“Basically, it’s a great club to be a part of, full of great people and I’m delighted to be back to start my third season here,” he said.
Meaney also spoke of how Drogheda’s coaching staff and his teammates from last season helped him during his long injury layoff.
“It definitely wasn’t easy. It was hard for me not being a part of all the highs and lows of their season, but the lads were great, always asking how I was and bringing me into the dressing room every time I was up. That’d help a lot.
“Tim was also brilliant to me throughout the injury and I owe him and Kev a lot for giving me a new contract although I missed the second half of the season.”
Drogheda’s pre-season training began earlier this week and a fit again Meaney is enjoying being back involved with the first team.
“Thankfully I’m back now and I’m raring to go. I’m looking to hit the ground running and just try help the team as much as I can - that’s the main thing,” Meaney said.
Drogheda reached the promotion play-offs last year, beating Shelbourne before losing to Finn Harps, who then got promoted after beating Limerick in the play-off final.
Meaney insists Drogheda aren’t going to look too far ahead just yet regarding promotion, taking it game by game, and on a personal level, is looking to play as many minutes as possible.
“My hopes for myself this season would be to try get as much game time as possible, and obviously to score and contribute to a couple more goals, that would be a bonus,” Meaney said.
“In regards to the team, all the lads came back in flying form and there has been a great buzz around the dressing room.
“Hopefully it’s a good year for us, obviously promotion would be great but we’re just going to take it game by game and not look too far ahead just yet,” he said.