Blues boss David Lynch says FA Cup experience in Marine's loss to Tottenham Hotspur was a ‘Special One’

It’s not every day you get to sit in the opposite dugout to a former FIFA World Coach of the Year.

Wednesday, 13th January 2021, 3:09 pm
Updated Wednesday, 13th January 2021, 3:12 pm
David Lynch sits in the background as Neil Young, Manager of Marine, looks on during the FA Cup Third Round match between Marine and Tottenham Hotspur at Rossett Park on January 10, 2021 in Crosby, England.

Or watch your team-mates pit their wits against a four-time Champions League winner.

But Clitheroe FC boss David Lynch hit the jackpot in the FA Cup third round at the weekend.

The 27-year-old signed for Marine on a short-term deal prior to the tie against Tottenham Hotspur.

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Tottenham Hotspur's Portuguese head coach Jose Mourinho gives a post-match interview after the English FA Cup third round football match between Marine and Tottenham Hotspur at Rossett Park ground in Crosby, north west England, on January 10, 2021.

And he had front row seats for the historic game, which ended in a 5-0 win for the Premier League side.

Lynch was in earshot of serial trophy winner Jose Mourinho, who introduced Gareth Bale to the action with just over an hour played.

”It was a complete shock,” said the Shawbridge chief. “It was unbelievable.

“It was great to be around the Tottenham Hotspur game and that experience was invaluable.

Gareth Bale of Tottenham Hotspur runs with the ball under pressure from James Barrigan of Marine during the FA Cup Third Round match between Marine and Tottenham Hotspur at Rossett Park on January 10, 2021 in Crosby, England.

“To be around a game of that magnitude was unbelievable and I can’t thank Marine enough for the opportunity.

“It was brilliant. I’m obsessed with the game, I live and breathe it, I took everything in and learnt so much from it.

“I could hear every word Jose Mourinho was saying. It was fantastic.”

Lynch was an unused substitute for the tie at The Marine Travel Arena on Sunday, but it was an experience that he’ll always cherish.

The former Burnley youth team captain, who had played under Mariners boss Neil Young at Altrincham in 2016, soaked everything up.

He was part of the build-up, trained with the team at Everton’s Finch Farm and Liverpool’s Academy and was involved in tactical discussions.

Lynch was chewing the fat with assistant Alan Morgan until the early hours of the morning ahead of the tie.

“It was unbelievable,” he said. “I wasn’t expecting to get on to the pitch because you’ve got to reward the lads that worked hard to get you there.

“The learning experience that I’ve got from it has been phenomenal. I just soaked it all up in terms of the preparation and gameplan, it was fantastic.

“I shared a room with Alan Morgan before the game. He was absolutely fantastic.

“We were up until about 2 a.m. discussing tactics and different passing drills. We’re just both in love with the game.

“I’ve got a bit of time now to dissect it all, take everything in and try and tinker that to benefit us. It’ll only bode well for me as a manager.”

Lynch also managed to get hold of former Clarets goalkeeper Joe Hart’s shirt at the end of the match.

The Blues boss had been impressed with the attitude, application and professionalism of the ex-England international, who had a lengthy discussion with Bayleigh Passant post match.

He said: “We couldn’t actually have their official shirts due to Covid restrictions, but Tottenham printed another set of shirts for everybody. I managed to get Joe Hart’s.

“What a professional he is! I was listening to him, watching the way he was encouraging the young lads, the way he was demanding things from his team-mates.

“A player of his experience, who has done what he’s done, is still going to Marine and treating it like it’s a final.

“That’s why he’s at the top. Players like that have got the ability, but they’ve got the right mentality as well.

“He’s a top man, a top pro, and you can see that just from listening to him for 90 minutes.”

Former Benfica striker Vinicius netted a first half hat-trick to send Spurs well on their way to the fourth round of the competition.

Lucas Moura scored the away side’s third with a well-taken free kick while 16-year-old Alfie Devine completed the scoring on the hour.