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Pride and pain for Patrick McEleney

Derry man suffers possible season-ending injury on the biggest stage

Patrick McEleney

Patrick McEleney had a memorable night against Arsenal in the Europa league

Patrick McEleney could miss the rest of the season after suffering a groin injury in the Europa League group game against Arsenal on Thursday night.  

The 28-year-old enjoyed one of the biggest nights of his football career to date when he lined up with team mate and fellow Derry man Michael Duffy to take on one of the world’s most famous teams at the Emirates Stadium.

McEleney made an impression, and almost opened the scoring early on as Dundalk held their own.

Unfortunately, the night ended early for McEleney, who had to be substituted less than ten minutes into the second half of the 3-0 defeat.

“It just ruined the night to be honest,” he admits. “I felt really good and really fit. I played a few games leading up to it; it’s no secret that I’ve missed quite a few games and for two years now it has basically been four weeks on, five weeks off, four weeks on again. I’m just trying to get to the bottom of it. It’s a disaster.

“I think it’s a bad enough tear in the groin. I was chasing after a pass which I should never have chased, and I was never getting to the ball. I tried to stretch, which was silly on my part. I just need to reassess myself now in November and December.”

McEleney now faces a period on the sidelines, and after numerous injury frustrations over the past few years, he is determined to get to the bottom of it this time around.

“It’s the same story, different year,” he concludes. “Last year I missed the FAI Cup final; we need to get there first of course, but it’s obviously on our minds.

“I just need to get the head down now and try and get back for the last couple of games, but I will not be rushing back this time.”

See the full interview in Monday's Derry News

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