INSTITUTE’S Michael McCrudden admits he would love to end his career by scoring the winning goal against a side Stephen Kenny is managing.
The talented striker, who picked up the Belleek Football Writers’ Championship Player of the Month on Tuesday for his display in February, spent a season at Derry City under Kenny’s management.
“My time at Derry was my lowest point that I have ever been and when I left my main goal was to score the winning goal against Stephen Kenny’s team and that’s not good,” he stated.
“To be honest I would have been happy finishing my career scoring the winning goal against Stephen Kenny’s team and that’s wrong, but that’s the way I felt.
“I have said before that I hated every minute of my time at Derry City, everything was awful.
“You just knew that no matter what you might have done all week at training you still weren’t going to play on the Friday night, in fact the only time I was happy was when I got a kick of the ball at half-time for 15 minutes whenever I was substitute on a Friday night.”
The one time Newcastle United starlet also believes his poor experience with the Candy Stripes has made him a better player.
“In footballing terms my time at Derry City hasn’t helped me, but mentally it has helped me a big lot,” he added.
“Because I didn’t get a chance at Derry it has driven me on to sort of prove to them that they were a wee bit wrong as I have a wee bit about me.
“I went to Institute last season around January time and although I still wasn’t hitting form I still felt that I could still do something, then this season has been a different story, I have been playing all right and things have been working so far.”
The Gobnascale man who was thrilled to win the Football Writers’ award conceded he would be happy to hand back all his accolades and goals as long as ’Stute were guaranteed Premiership football next season.
“Obviously everyone knows the main thing is that we want to get promoted.
“But it’s always good to get on the score-sheet and obviously as a front man you want to score goals, but to be honest it would take all those goals away from myself as long as the team keeps winning.
“This is obviously my first full season as a senior player, so whenever the season started I set myself a target of 10 goals and I think I’m nearly there.”
Last weekend the 21-year-old help the Drumahoe club reach the last four of the Coca Cola Intermediate Cup after they defeated Glentoran Seconds, but McCrudden was a little bit disappointed that they didn’t pick up more points in the league.
“I think we would rather have liked to have played in the league, but that’s the way the fixtures were and at the end of the day we won again and it’s nice that we are still in the Intermediate Cup, because it’s nice to get runs in cup competitions.
“I didn’t have my best game at the Oval but at least the team won, as that’s the main thing.”
McCrudden, who is big mates with current Newcastle United and Northern Ireland international Shane Ferguson, still has high hopes that he can still make himself a career back in England.
“That is everyone’s number one goal to play football full-time and I would love a second chance at it.
“I don’t think I would be afraid of it, I do believe I can do it, but it’s all about getting that chance and more importantly taking it when you get it.
“Getting my chance at York City certainly has made me want it more in terms of trying to get full-time football back across the water. Knowing that their then manager Gary Mills liked me it was great for my self confidence and it also makes me believe that I do have a chance of getting back over.”