The Big Interview – Ciaran Kilheeney (LEP)

Eye for goal: Ciaran Kilheeney

Published Date: 28 November 2009
By Tony Dewhurst

Like many a precocious schoolboy, Ciaran Kilheeney found that more than talent was required to succeed as a professional.
He could have dropped out, disillusioned with life when Manchester City freed him nearly eight years ago and when Kilheeney’s football career existed in a very different environment.

“I was a regular in City’s reserves, and I seemed to score every time I played,” he said.

“I thought I did well, having developed into a decent player.

“But I don’t think Kevin Keegan, the first team boss then, cared much about what was happening outside the senior squad.

“That’s how it felt for me anyhow.

“It was a hugely disappointing experience.

“It hit me really hard.

“I’d joined Manchester City from school, and to this day I don’t know why I didn’t get the chance.

“Sometimes, you don’t know in life do you?”

When Kilheeney stepped into the rough and tumble world of non-league, and after two-and-a-half years on the fringes of the Premier League, he was effectively starting his career again.

“That’s how it felt, and when Mossley asked me to play a few games for them I went.

“I turned up at Seel Park, got changed in a shack and the mud was nearly over my boots when I stepped on the pitch.

“It was an unbelievable experience after the cosseted, comfortable life as a pro.”