Capping off a great weekend of sport in the Kilkenny neck of the woods, natives Karen Duggan and Ellen Molloy picked up top honours at the FAI Women’s National League end of season awards.
Having just completed a domestic league and cup double with Peamount United, Piltown’s Karen Duggan was named Player of the Season for the second time in her career.
Duggan saw off competition from club-mates Aine O’Gorman and Eleanor Ryan-Doyle, Cork City’s Saoirse Noonan and Shelbourne’s Pearl Slattery to the main award
“It definitely is my best season in football. Winning the League last season was a monkey off our back for Peamount United, we felt like we were getting the club back to where it belonged”, said Duggan on claiming this season’s award.
“But with everything that happened this year, the group of girls that we have and finally getting our hands on the Cup trophy after many disappointments there, it was just a magnificent season.
“We really kicked on this year and it was such a tight-knit group and I’m just happy that we were able to repay all of the work that the people on the ground at the club deserve.”
Molloy continues to shine
Former Thomastown United starlet Ellen Molloy has had an exceptional debut season with Wexford Youths, has earned two caps for the Republic of Ireland senior team and is this year’s Young Player of the Season – all before she turns 17.
She was selected ahead of Cork City’s Eabha O’Mahony, Galway’s Shauna Brennan, Shelbourne’s Jessica Ziu and Treaty United’s Aoife Horgan.
“Everything went so fast. I was just hoping to make the team in Wexford firstly and then I had a great debut and it went from there. I’m delighted that it went so well and everyone at Wexford was so good to me,” said Molloy.
Team of the Season
Duggan was also named in the Team of the Season for a record sixth time. She was joined by Peamount team-mates Niamh Farrelly, Claire Walsh, Eleanor Ryan-Doyle and Aine O’Gorman.
Shelbourne had captain Pearl Slattery and midfielder Jessica Ziu make the XI, while there was one representative apiece from DLR Waves (goalkeeper Eve Badana), Galway WFC (left-back Shauna Brennan), Wexford Youths (midfielder Ellen Molloy), and Cork City (forward Saoirse Noonan).
The four different Barretstown / WNL Player of the Month winners of Molloy, Noonan, Ziu and Duggan all made the final selection.
Awards were given to the Top Goalscorer, Aine O’Gorman, who netted 14 goals in 12 League games to win the golden boot for the third time, and the holder of the Most Clean Sheets, Rachael Kelly, who recorded five shut-outs for Shelbourne.
There was also recognition for the late Michael Hayes, who sadly passed away last September, as he was honoured with a Services to the Women’s National League award.
Full list of 2020 Women’s National League Awards
Player of the Season: Karen Duggan (Peamount United)
Young Player of the Season: Ellen Molloy (Wexford Youths)
Top Goalscorer: Aine O’Gorman (Peamount United)
Most Clean Sheets: Rachael Kelly (Shelbourne)
Services to the Women’s National League: Michael Hayes (RIP)