Cobh Ramblers F.C.

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Cobh Ramblers
Cobh Ramblers FC crest
Full name Cobh Ramblers Football Club
Nickname(s) "Ramblers" or "The Rams" "The Claret and Blue Army"
Founded 1922
Ground St. Colman's Park, Cobh,
County Cork
Ground Capacity 5,890[1]
Manager Martin Cambridge
League League of Ireland
(First Division)
2013 7th
Website Club home page

Cobh Ramblers Football Club (CRFC) (Irish: Cumann Peile Chóstóirí Chóbh) is an Irish football club in the League of Ireland First Division. The club, founded in 1922 and elected to the league in 1985, hails from Cobh, County Cork and play their home matches at St. Colman's Park. The club's colours are claret and blue.

Stephen Henderson guided them to the First Division title for the first time on 10 November 2007, which saw Cobh promoted to the top flight for the first time in 12 years.

Henderson resigned at the end of the 2008 season after Ramblers were relegated from the Premier Division, where the battle went down to the last day and saw UCD, Ramblers and Finn Harps relegated. They subsequently failed to gain a license for the League of Ireland First Division and thus played in the A Championship. In January 2013, the FAI awarded the club a First Division license, thus regaining League status after a four-year absence.[2]

On 19 January 2009 it was revealed that Dave Hill would return to the club to replace Henderson as manager.[3] The club have a very successful u19 team. They won the u19 Southern Division in the 2011/12 season and were promoted to the Elite Division.

The Football Association of Ireland on 24 January 2013 announced that Cobh Ramblers had been awarded a licence by the Independent Club Licencing Committee to compete in the 2013 Airtricity League First Division.

History[edit]

CRFC was originally a field hockey club but until the British withdrawal from Ireland many club members played football with the soldiers who were stationed at Cobh, leading to the Ramblers' eventual re-formation as a football club.

Ramblers played in the 1976 FAI League Cup, reaching the semi finals.

Cobh Ramblers joined the League of Ireland in 1985, after many successful years as a Munster Senior League side. One of the most successful of those teams was the team of 1983, who got to the semi final of the FAI Cup humbling many senior clubs on the way. They met Sligo Rovers in the semi-final that year and captured the imagination of the Irish footballing public, drawing crowds of over 20,000 to Flower Lodge for the home games as St Colmans Park was too small. There were 3 replays until Sligo finally won 3-2 and went on to win the Cup.

Cobh won promotion to the Premier Division in 1988, after finishing First Division runners-up to Athlone Town. Lasting just one season in the top flight, they won promotion again at the end of the 1992-93 season, this time as runners-up to Galway United. A play-off win over Finn Harps saw Ramblers retain their Premier Division status at the end of the 1993-94 season, but the club were relegated in second-last place the following year.

With Ramblers having played all but four of their League of Ireland campaigns in the First Division, they rarely get to play their local rivals Cork City, a Premier Division team, with the two usually only being able to match up in pre-season friendlies and the occasional cup match, Cobh being the minnows in terms of League of Ireland experience.

In recent years, fan numbers have not been as high as they were during the glory days when Ramblers were in the top flight of Irish football and playing glamorous pre-season matches against the likes of Celtic and Arsenal. Though even with its lower attendance at home matches (usually about 600 or so, over 1000 for the 2008 season), the fans in attendance are loyal and take part in club fund-raisers and events as well as watching the match. It is hoped though that with a new younger generation becoming interested in the League of Ireland, due to promotion of the league and sport as a whole, that attendance and the fortunes of the club might improve.

Ramblers appeared on live television for the first time on Friday, 10 November 2006 in an away fixture at Galway United, where they lost 1-0.

On 10 November 2007 Cobh Ramblers beat Athlone Town 1-0 in Lissywoollen in what was a tense and nervous display. This victory gave Cobh Ramblers their first piece of Senior Silverware and crowned them First Division Champions. During the 2007 season, with their young squad, they recorded a 27 game unbeaten run, keeping 22 clean sheets.[4] Their points tally of 77 points was also a record for the league.

However, after suffering relegation from the League of Ireland Premier Division, Ramblers subsequently failed to obtain a license for the First Division due to financial constrainst and so compete in the Newstalk A Championship (Ireland's third tier).

In 2010 Ramblers missed out on gaining promotion back to the League of Ireland losing to Salthill Devon in a play off.[5]

The Ramblers most noted past player is former Irish international and Manchester United star Roy Keane[6] while Stephen Ireland who is currently playing for Aston Villa F.C. is a product of the Youth System. Westlife singer Nicky Byrne, also a talented footballer who was on the books at Leeds United, had a spell with the club too.

On the 18th March 2014, the club parted company with manager Dave Hill by mutual consent after five years. He was replaced by Martin Cambridge on an interim basis.

Stadium[edit]

St Colman's Park was redeveloped during the mid-2000s. Construction on a new state of the art Changing facilite and press office along with a new Chairman's office was completed in 2006 along with new floodlights and a 900-seater stand replacing the old shed. The east stand, too has seen improvement with 450 new seats being installed. Plans for a new 900 seater stand adjacent to the existing stand have temporarily been put on hold due to minor financial difficulties at the club. A new slick surface was also added prior to the clubs admission to the Eircom/Airtricity League Premier Division in 2009.

The stadium has hosted international underage games including games in the 1994 UEFA European Under-16 Football Championship qualifiers.

Munster Schools Senior Cup games have also been staged at the stadium including the final which was won by local Cobh school, Coláiste Muire in 2010.

Current Squad[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
Republic of Ireland GK Robert Birdsall
Republic of Ireland GK Shane Hallahan
Republic of Ireland GK David Browne
Republic of Ireland DF Andy O'Connell
Republic of Ireland DF Craig Burns
Republic of Ireland DF Brendan Frahill
Republic of Ireland DF Anthony O'Donnell
Republic of Ireland DF Andrew Neville
Republic of Ireland DF Eoghan Murphy
Republic of Ireland DF Eoin Hastings
No. Position Player
Republic of Ireland MF Martin Deady
Republic of Ireland MF David Curran
Republic of Ireland MF Garry Comerford
Republic of Ireland MF Robert Waters
Republic of Ireland GK Rob Lynch
Republic of Ireland MF Stephen Kenny
Republic of Ireland MF Keith O'Flynn
Republic of Ireland MF Ryan Goldsmith
Republic of Ireland MF Nathaniel Gumbo
Republic of Ireland FW Alan O'Flynn
Republic of Ireland FW Bobby Donoghue
Republic of Ireland FW Ron Stanton

U19s[edit]

Cobh Ramblers have a successful u19 squad. The National u19 league was introduced in 2011, replacing the old A Championship. Cobh Ramblers won the Southern Division that year, gaining promotion to the Elite Division. Dave Hill took charge that season and in their first year at that level they finished 10th and avoiding relegation. Most of that squad have advanced to the Senior Team. Martin Cambridge recently took over the side from Dave Hill. With Cambridge managing the senior team, Stephen Birmingham took over the side for the 2014/15 season.

U19 Squad[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
Republic of Ireland GK Eoghan Daly
Republic of Ireland DF Adam O'Sullivan
Republic of Ireland DF Dylan Walsh
Republic of Ireland DF Kevin McNally
Republic of Ireland DF Charlie Fleming
Republic of Ireland DF Kyle McNamara
Republic of Ireland MF Brendan Kenny
Republic of Ireland MF Christopher McCarthy
Republic of Ireland MF Timmy Foley
Republic of Ireland MF David O'Gorman
Republic of Ireland MF Shane Daly-Butz
Republic of Ireland MF George Gill
Republic of Ireland MF Ryan Goldsmith
Republic of Ireland FW Evan Shine
Republic of Ireland FW Dion Hennessy
Republic of Ireland FW Danny Barry

Supporters[edit]

Cobh Ramblers have a loyal fanbase. The "Cobh Ramblers Ultras" as they are known, used to locate in the East stand, behind the goal. Nowadays they locate at the far end of the South stand. They cheer the team on through their unique chanting. There is also a Cobh Ramblers Supporters Club, who are involved in fundraising for the club.

Honours[edit]

Notable former players[edit]

Notable former managers[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ www.fussballtempel.net
  2. ^ http://www.fai.ie/domestic-a-grassroots/airtricity-league/news/102993-cobh-ramblers-awarded-a-2013-airtricity-league-first-division-licence.html
  3. ^ "Hill returns to manage Cobh". RTÉ Sport. Retrieved 15 July 2012. 
  4. ^ "Cobh boss praises promotion winners". RTÉ Sport. Retrieved 15 July 2012. 
  5. ^ "Salthill Devon secure 1st Division Status". www.airtricityleague.ie. 6 November 2010. Retrieved 15 July 2012. 
  6. ^ "Memorable events in Keane's career". RTÉ Sport. Retrieved 15 July 2012. 
  7. ^ "Munster Football Association - Previous Winners". Munster Football Association. Retrieved 26 November 2013. 

External links[edit]