Buchanan happy to handle extra role at Loughgall

Gareth Buchanan is one of the senior players at Lakeview Park.INPT32-221
Gareth Buchanan is one of the senior players at Lakeview Park.INPT32-221

Gareth Buchanan has been such a fixture on the modern Irish League landscape it may surprise many that he is just 23 years old.

The Loughgall goalkeeper has packed plenty of talking points into his football timeline and was a key part of last season’s successful fight against relegation, having returned to the club following a spell in senior football with Dungannon Swifts.

Holding a position between the posts at Irish League level since his teenage years, Buchanan accepts the added responsibility that comes with a CV both intensive and extensive.

“I am still only 23 years old but enjoy that bit of extra responsibility,” said Buchanan. “To be honest, I can obviously see everything in front of me during a match and talking helps me concentrate.

“I got a lucky break at 15 years old or so and have quite a few seasons under my belt, plus we are coming off the back of a mad year with players coming and going, a management change and relegation battle.

“If you compare the squad that played against Dundela on the opening day of last season to the group we will travel with on Saturday to Ballyclare it is going to be really different.

“There is probably only me, Ricky Copeland, Marcus Dallas, Steven Ferguson and Wesley Boyle still at the club.

“But it is about staying positive and this season the senior players will have to help the younger lads settle in and adjust.

“When you have people with the experience of Ferguson and Boyle it can only be a great advantage.

“I love the club and the work that people do behind the scenes is amazing to keep everything going.

“The small details make this place so special and any time I have family or friends down to watch a game they get treated so well by everyone.

“Those things make this such a brilliant club and help players build a connection.”