Eric Molloy is a Carlow man through and through but he has had some journey to playing football with the Carlow senior inter-county team.
Molloy (pictured above wearing #22) joined Wexford Youths in 2012 and stayed with the side for four seasons before joining amateur New Zealand side Southern United for one season, adding two years with Team Wellington. He moved back to Europe to play with Polish side Stomil Olsztyn in 2019 before returning to Ireland to play with Waterford FC in 2021, his stay in Waterford short-lived as he moved to Dublin side Shelbourne in the same year.
Of course, it might have helped that in 2021 he wound up finding the back of the net in the Carlow senior football final for Rathvilly against Éire Óg.
Molloy signed for Longford Town in 2022 before also joining up with Niall Carew’s Carlow footballers for the O’Byrne Cup games in January. He was then picked as part of the Carlow panel to play in this year’s division 4 National Football League, featuring for the county against Wicklow on Saturday night.
“Exciting I’d say”, was Molloy’s reaction to how he thought the game went down in the stands of Netwatch Cullen Park. “The fans would have loved that one, straight away two goals within the first 3 minutes, scores, lots of action, lots of hits, cards thrown out, everything.”
Carlow would spend most of the second half playing with 14 men but went on to dig out a 2-10 draw thanks to a late point from Shane O’Neill.
“We finished strong, and Wicklow had an extra man and it just showed our fitness level, some of the scores we kicked is a positive, some of the plays we did are all positive, so there is a lot of positives there to build on and we just have to focus on them and do a little more of them”, Molloy told KCLR and Scoreline.ie after Saturday’s game. I think we need to keep all our players on the pitch and I think if we do that coming into the next game we have a hell of a chance”.
“The home crowd were brilliant I have to say, there was a lot of cheering and shouting, and the atmosphere was brilliant, I hope to have that next time here in Netwatch Cullen Park.”
When asked by Robbie Dowling if he had any ideas of ever going back there to the League of Ireland, Molloy responded “we’ll keep the phone on do not disturb at the minute. We’ll see how we go later on in the year but at the minute I’m just focusing on the county football, but you’d never know if there’s a good offer on the table you’d never know what would happen, but my focus is here at the minute.”
Carlow’s Allianz Football League journey continues this weekend with a road trip to the SETU Arena at Carriganore to take on Waterford from 5pm on Saturday.