Richie Towell was last night named the SSE Airtricity/ Soccer Writers of Ireland ‘Personality Of The Year’.

And there could be double cause for celebration for the former Dundalk man today, as he is in line to make his debut for Brighton in the FA Cup against Hull.

That prospect meant the Dubliner — already named the ‘Players’ Player Of The Year’ — could not be in his home town for last night’s awards ceremony but, in a video message broadcast at the event, he said: “I’d like to thank, first of all, the soccer writers who voted for me and I’d also like to thank the backroom staff at Dundalk and all the players, because without them I wouldn’t have been able to win this award.”

And speaking yesterday ahead of Brighton’s trip to Hull, the goal-scoring midfielder said: “I signed a few weeks ago, so it’s been frustrating not being able to play. Being at training with the lads has been great but nothing compares to playing competitive football, and that’s what I’m here to do.

I just need to get into the team, take my chance whenever I get it, and be ready for the busy schedule in the Championship.

“There are a lot of games coming up thick and fast, so I just need to take my chance when it comes. The training has been a step up, you can see the quality here. To be fair at Dundalk we trained at a really high intensity as well, we had really good players, but there is definitely a step up in quality. Time will tell when I get my game-time.”

League and Cup winners Dundalk did another double at last night’s soccer writers’ banquet when Gary Rogers was named ‘Goalkeeper Of The Year’.

Also at the prestigious event, former Irish international Arthur Fitzsimons received the Special Merit award, there was a presentation to the family of the late League of Ireland legend Johnny Fullam, and there was recognition of the contribution of Damien Duff to Irish football following his announcement of his retirement as a player.

Republic of Ireland manager Martin O’Neill was among those in attendance at the annual awards ceremony which was held in the Conrad Hotel.


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