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“It Feels Like A Lot More” – Cherrie on 75th Appearance

First Team News
// 5 May 2011

Dundalk FC goalkeeper Peter Cherrie admits it “feels like a lot more” as he prepares for his 75th competitive appearance when he returns to the scene of his club debut against Galway United at Terryland Park on Friday night (kick-off 7.45pm). The 27-year-old Bellshill native arrived at Oriel Park from Scottish side Clyde in July 2009 and has owned the No1 shirt since, making 58 league outings, after almost immediately dislodging club stalwart Chris Bennion, whose six-year association with the Lilywhites came to an end shortly after.

First experience
And Cherrie (pictured above on his debut) has recalled his first experience between the sticks for the Louth club. “It feels like a lot more,” Pete smiled as he spoke todundalkfc.com on Thursday afternoon. “I’ve not even kept a track record of how many appearances I’ve made. Seventy-five is good but I’m hoping to have a lot more. I can actually remember my debut over there. Seán Connor told me on the pitch just as we were about to play that he wanted me to start instead of Chris (Bennion), which I wasn’t expecting. But I dealt with it, we got a 3-0 win and I was happy with how it went.”

Eyeing improvement
The former Airdrie United, Ayr United and Clyde ‘keeper’s performances saw him nominated for the SWAI Goalkeeper of the Year award in December, but he knows that he has not yet reached that form this year. “Not majorly happy,” Cherrie said when asked if he was more content with his form than he was a month ago. “But I’m happy enough that we’ve not been beaten in the last four games, so I’ll take that as a positive. Three clean sheets (from 18 games), personally for me, is nowhere near good enough. Hopefully, against Galway, I can remedy that and keep another one. Honestly, I think we can get six points from this weekend. I’ve got every confidence in the boys that we can get that. I wouldn’t like to come out with anything less than that.”

‘Difficult game’
Galway have won just one game this year, away to Bohemians in late March, but Cherrie is taking nothing for granted. “It’s going to be a different game,” he said. “The fact that they’ve only won one out of their 11 games means nothing. They’ll be coming out all guns blazing, especially with Seán Connor, an ex-manager here. He’ll be hoping to get one over us, but we’ve just got to concentrate on ourselves and hopefully we can put in a performance and get a result.” Dundalk are unbeaten in four league games, and commenting on the side’s recent form, Pete said: “I’m happy enough but there are a few things that need to be improved, maybe a couple of defensive things, including my own form. But overall, I’m happy enough.

Mental strength
“We knew it was going to be a tough game against Rovers,” the Scot added. “But I think the wind played a big part in the game. We could have won it I thought. It was a difficult game. Maybe they should have had a penalty, but that’s the way things go.” The Lilywhites are currently in a run of eight games in a 24-day period, but for goalkeepers, Pete says the amount of games is more mentally than physically draining. “It affects the outfield players more than it affects me,” he said. “They’re working a lot, lot harder and constantly running. But for me, it’s mentally, I’ve got to stay focussed, because for long periods in the game I’m doing nothing and then obviously I’ve got to do something. The boys are feeling it in their legs, but for me it’s mentally.” The Setanta Sports Cup final is just a week away now, but Cherrie concluded by insisting: “To be honest, that will take care of itself. None of the boys have mentioned it, we’re not even thinking of it. We’re just concentrating on these two league games and then we’ll look at the cup final.”

A-Z of PC

A – Airdrie – his hometown

B – Bellshill – his place of birth

C – Celtic – a club close to his heart

D – Drogheda United – the club he made his Oriel Park debut against

E – Europa League – where he made his debut on the European stage last year

F – 4 – Just4Keepers, suppliers of the gloves he wears

G – Glenboig – his first ever football club

H – Hendry, Colin – one of his managers at Clyde

I – Interior Design – what he worked at for a brief spell after leaving Clyde

J – Joseph Ndo – his favourite League of Ireland player (other than teammates)

K – Kilsyth Rangers – another of his former clubs

L – Laura – his fiancée

M – Miller, Joe – another of his managers at Clyde

N – No1 – undisputed at Oriel Park

O – October – his month of birth

P – Player of the Year – for 2010

Q – Quiet – the quiet man of Dundalk’s dressing room

R – Roy Keane – he defeated Keane on the Corkman’s Celtic debut

S – Super – no explanation needed!

T – Tallaght Stadium – a place where he has never conceded a goal

U – Unbeatable – at times

V – Van Nistelrooy, Ruud – who scored against him during 2005 pre-season

W – Wayne Rooney – who played against him in the same game

X – X-Ray – he had to go for one on his broken foot last July

Y – Yovov, Hristo – the first man ever to score against him in Europe

Z – Joãozinho – the mesmerising Brazilian of Levski Sofia that he came up against last year