The Dundalk manager on his successful career in Irish football

In Ireland, we are often guilty of neglecting our own football league in favour of keeping up with the goings-on in England and other countries.

But the recent progress of Dundalk in European competition proves that Irish clubs have a lot to offer.

Dundalk's Stephen Kenny is arguably the most successful manager in the country right now. He claims that the Irish media's emphasis on English football doesn't really frustrate him as much as you might think.

"It's up to us to organise ourselves better and the marketing budget is minuscule from the FAI. There's a lot of live games on TV and reasonable media coverage. I understand the English Premier League is the most commercial and that there's a tradition of people following English football."

Dundalk played 12 games in the Europa League last season, and Stephen believes the crowds they have attracted shows the interest people have in the team: "We should be looking to fill the Aviva Stadium for these matches."

One of the problems the League of Ireland often has to face is the loss of its star players to English clubs. But Stephen accepts that this is just the way the game is nowadays.

"If we'd kept the players we've lost over the last few seasons, we'd most likely have beaten Rosenborg. But that's the way of the world - the smaller leagues lose players to the bigger leagues."

Stephen has had a highly respected managerial career in Ireland. He was 26 when he became manager of his first club, Longford.

"I felt it was a brilliant opportunity. They'd been bottom of the league for a couple of years and there was poor morale at the club. We then got promoted and got into the UEFA Cup."

Having had a stint with Dunfermline in Scotland, would he consider moving out of Ireland again to manage?

"I'm very committed to Dundalk and have just signed a new contract," he says, "but of course I'd like to manage at the highest level."

As for one day taking on the job of Ireland manager, he has this to say:

"It would be ridiculous to say you didn't want it, but I think I have a lot more to prove before I'm seriously considered."