Jessica Hennessy, second from right, with Athlone Town manager Tommy Hewitt and team mates, from left, Muireann Devaney, Maddison Gibson, and Laurie Ryan.

Hennessy hoping to end the season on a high

Jessica Hennessy and her Athlone Town team mates are hoping that they can end an already memorable season on a high by beating newly crowned league champions Shelbourne in Sunday's FAI Women's Cup final.

The Loughnavalley native has been one of Athlone Towns top performers this campaign; a campaign in which they exceeded everyone's expectations, including their own, by mounting a title challenge that went right up to the last day of the season.

“At the start of the season, we set out goals to have a good cup run, and take points off the top three teams. We have achieved all that and are just delighted with how far we have come,” Thompson told reporters at the media event ahead of Sunday's match.

Former Westmeath player Hennessy (21) joined Athlone Town in 2020, when the club joined the Women's National League, and only took up playing soccer when she was a teenager.

“I played for my local GAA club as there was no soccer team. I was a late starter. I began with Mullingar Athletic at 14, playing for their U18s. To be in a cup final is mad. I was always a midfielder until last season when Tommy (Hewitt) put me into defence. I would look up to Louise Quinn, but Katie McCabe was the one I always looked up to, she’s a brilliant player.”

Looking ahead to Sunday's final, Hennessy says that she is going to try and enjoy the occasion.

“I went to a few cup finals in the Aviva with my dad, it’s mad I’m playing in one now.

“It’s crazy, I didn’t expect it so soon. Not that many play in a cup final, that’s what Tommy has been telling us, to cherish every moment. Anything can happen on the day.”