Mulvey hopes Exiles can kick on


Lorcan Mulvey in action for the Butlersbridge club

Since moving to London last year – where he is a site agent with Berkeley Homes – former Butlersbridge and Cavan star Lorcan Mulvey has established himself as a driving force at centrefield for both Fulham Irish and London. We caught up with the talismanic midfielder to reflect on 2012 and look forward to 2013.

Even though Paul Coggins’ London produced some very impressive performances in 2012 – none more so than against Antrim in the SF qualifiers – Lorcan Mulvey wasn’t content with how things panned out. Mulvey’s strong fielding and powerful running were key features of the Exiles’ campaign, but the Cavan native expected them to do even better:
“I’m not particularly happy,” he concedes. “I thought we could have gone a couple of stages further. We were very optimistic this year because we had a very strong panel with a lot of very strong players who we wouldn’t have had at our disposal the previous year.

“Against Leitrim in the Connacht championship, we simply didn’t play to our potential on the day. Against Antrim, it wasn’t that we played badly but Antrim were a better team and they edged past us. But the Leitrim game is the one we look back on with most regret – we were very disappointed because not one of us played to our potential that day.

Lorcan goes high while lining out for Cavan

“The national football league campaign got better as it went on. We were getting to know each other as the league progressed because it’s a new team in London each year and it takes time for the players to get used to each other.

“Even though this was my first year involved with London, I have looked at different London teams in the past and they tend to have completely new players each year, which presents a massive challenge in itself. People tend to come over and back, maybe stay for one year or emigrate to Australia or somewhere else, or else they just don’t want to give the commitment for a second year. This is definitely one of the biggest problems facing London football; if we could get a settled team, year in year out, it would make a big difference.”

Encouragingly, there appears to be a very good chance of this happening in 2013: “The ways things are, there don’t seem to be too many players intending to move on this time,” Mulvey notes. “But it’s still only September and there’s a few months to go yet before the start of the season and you don’t know what’s going to happen between now and then. However, the manager is optimistic and if we could overcome that problem everything else might fall into place.”

Will the Cavan man be there himself? “At the moment I’m with a very good company and I have no intention of leaving. Of course, if the perfect job opportunity ever came up at home, I would have to jump at it. But the work over here is good and London is an excellent city that I would recommend to anybody. It’s very self-sufficient workwise – a mini economy in itself. There’s a big population in London and there’s always lots of work; it’s like a bubble, separate from the rest of the UK economy. At home, if you get a job it will be short-term, but this job I’m on at the moment is high-profile and it’s a good one to have on the CV.”

Any regrets about leaving Cavan? And Butlersbridge? “I never wanted to do it. I was only out of work for two weeks when I left, but I  couldn’t afford to hang around so I decided to go for it. London is a nice city and it’s very easy to get on with people. There’s a huge Irish community and once you join a GAA club you have 40 friends straight away!”

The club Lorcan joined is Fulham Irish. “They’ve been in existence seven years and we won the SFC last year for the first time. This was my second year with them and I was lucky enough to captain the team. Unfortunately, we got knocked out at the quarter-final stage, having never really got going. It’s hard to put titles back-to-back but there’s a very good bunch of lads there and we hope to win it back again next year.”

Lining out for the London team

Lorcan hopes to kick on with the Exiles next year as well and the aim is to win three or four games in Division Four of the NFL. Long term, he admits that the lure of his homeland never diminishes: “It’s always in my head to go back to Cavan and I would love to play a couple of good years with Butlersbridge. I’m not getting any younger and I’d like to play for them again while I still have something to offer. I’d say the Cavan thing could be gone for me now but I’d like to get back to Butlersbridge within the next two or three years.”

Is travelling over and back an option? “I played a few games with them last year but it’s very tough flying over and back for games and you would be wrecked after it.”

Mind you, it’s also tough playing for London with the amount of travelling that’s involved! “It’s easier to live in Dublin and play for Cavan,” Lorcan concludes. “It’s an hour and a half from Dublin to Cavan but in London it’s an hour and 45 minutes to get to training and the same back. There are three of us from South London on the panel and we have to travel to North West London for training, because that’s where the majorityof them are based. It’s hard on the body and hard on the mind but you just have to get on with it.”