Club history League of Ireland 2000 - date

SEASON 2000/2001

New signings for the season were Keith Long, Paul O’Reilly, Gary Dempsey and Dave Campbell while Eddie Gormley (from St. Patrick’s Athletic) and Gary Smith (TEK United) both returned to the club for their second spell at the Carlisle. Matt Britton joined from Shamrock Rovers in September while Wesley Charles joined in November from Sligo Rovers.

Rocky, the new club mascot, made his debut during the season.

Wanderers' pre-season saw a glamour fixture with Glasgow Celtic at the Carlisle Grounds in Martin O’Neill’s first match as Celtic manager. Kieran O’Brien put Wanderers one up before two goals from Tommy Johnson put the Hoops ahead. Jason Byrne equalised for Wanderers before Johnson completed his hat trick to give Celtic a 3-2 win.

In the league Wanderers won their first two games and drew their third to jointly lead the premier division. Two home defeats to UCD and Galway in September saw Wanderers drop to eighth position. Wanderers then went on a twelve game unbeaten league run from mid October to the end of January and had moved up to third place in the table. Three consecutive league wins, in March, saw Wanderers move up to second place with just four games remaining. A 1-0 defeat, away to Bohemians at Dalymount Park, ended Wanderers hopes of winning the premier division. Wanderers won their final two league games of the season to finish in fourth position, the clubs highest ever finishing league position.

Wanderers were eliminated from the league cup in the group stage after a win over Monaghan United and a defeat to Shamrock Rovers.

In the FAI cup Wanderers defeated Sligo Rovers 5-0 at the Carlisle Grounds in round two before going out 2-1 to Bohemians in controversial circumstances in the third round. Wanderers had both Eddie Gormley and Stephen Fox red carded in the game.

SEASON 2001/2002

New signings for the season were former Irish Youth International Thomas Morgan, Keith Doyle, Robbie Doyle and Paul Forsyth while Matt Gregg arrived in October from Crystal Palace. Stephen Gifford had departed for Dublin City while John Ryan moved on to Dundalk.

Three teams would be relegated this season as the twelve team premier division would be reduced to ten for the following season. Wanderers started their league campaign with mixed results. Unbeaten after three games, Wanderers then lost their next three, but responded with two 5-1 home wins, within the space of two days, over Longford Town and Dundalk. Wanderers remained in mid-table all season and with strikers Jason Byrne and Paul Keegan on top form goals were in plenty supply during the campaign. Monaghan United were hit for five at the Carlisle Grounds in December while Galway United were also on the receiving end of five goals at Terryland Park in March, the fourth time that Wanderers scored five in a league game that season. In March, Wanderers scored fifteen goals in six league games and finished the season in eighth position in the premier division. Wanderers scored fifty four league goals in thirty three games, four goals more than the premier division champions Shelbourne managed.

UCD defeated Wanderers in the League cup at the Carlisle Grounds in October to end Wanderers interest in that competition.

In the FAI cup Wanderers progressed to the quarter final after defeating St. Patrick’s Athletic, 1-0 with a Philip Keogh goal at Richmond Park and Dublin City, 2-0 at Whitehall with Jason Byrne scoring both. For the third season in a row Wanderers went out of the FAI cup to Bohemians. The sides drew 1-1 at Dalymount Park with Mick Doohan equalising for Wanderers. A large crowd turned up for the replay at the Carlisle Grounds, but Bohemians ran out easy 4-0 winners.

SEASON 2002/2003

New arrivals for the season included Eamon Zayed, John Flood and Graham Lawlor while Paul Keegan departed to Bohemians. The 2002/03 season was a short season as the League was changing to Summer soccer in 2003. The FAI cup kicked off in July and Wanderers progressed to the quarter final with victories at home to Glebe North and away to Sligo Rovers. Glebe were defeated 2-0 at the Carlisle Grounds with goals from Mick Doohan and Graham O’Hanlon while Sligo Rovers were defeated in round three, also on a 2-0 score line, with Jason Byrne netting twice for Wanderers. Once again, for the fourth FAI cup campaign in succession, Wanderers faced Bohemians in the FAI cup. The Gypsies were winners again, running out 4-0 winners at the Carlisle Grounds.

In the league, Wanderers picked up three points from their opening five games and faced a relegation battle for the season. League wins over Drogheda United at home and away to St. Patrick’s Athletic kept Wanderers in eighth position during September. In October and November, Wanderers went nine league games without a win and dropped to the foot of the table. Wanderers managed only a single point from their final six league games of the season and finished the season bottom of the premier division, ten points behind ninth place Drogheda United.

There was no League cup competition held this season due to the restricted length of the season.


There were plenty of changes in the playing squad for the season after relegation. Gone were Matt Britton (to Kildare County), Jason Byrne (Shelbourne), Matt Gregg (UCD), Philip Keogh (Longford Town), Thomas Morgan (Shelbourne) and Barry O’Connor (Kildare County). Mick Doohan and John Walsh both retired while Paul Forsyth emigrated. New arrivals were Australian goalkeeper Chris O’Connor, Robbie McGuinness (St. Patrick’s Athletic) and Dave Campbell returned for his second spell with the club.

In the League cup Wanderers failed to progress beyond the group stage, losing at home to Shamrock Rovers and winning away to UCD.

In the First division league campaign Wanderers set the early pace and won their opening three games. Their third game, a 3-1 home win over Dundalk, saw Eamon Zayed score the quickest hat trick in Wanderers history; he scored it within an eight minute spell from the seventh to the fifteenth minute. Wanderers had dropped to fourth place by mid July after drawing quite a few games. Five wins in an eight game unbeaten run in July and August saw Wanderers move back to the top of the table for a brief spell. Away defeats to Athlone Town and Sligo Rovers, having already lost at both venues earlier in the campaign, then proved costly as Dublin city took over at the top of the table. In the final league game of the season Wanderers were away to Dublin City and needed a win to overtake their rivals and win the title on goal difference. The sides drew 1-1 so Wanderers then faced third place Finn Harps in a promotion play off, but lost both legs, 2-0 away and 2-1 at home.


Stephen Gifford returned for his second spell with the club, while Kevin Grogan arrived from UCD. Kevin was a former member of Brian Kerr’s Irish under 16 European championship winning team. Local lad Michael Roche, Gerry Quinn (St. Patrick’s Athletic). Matt Gregg departed for Bohemians

Once again, the League cup campaign ended at the group stage despite a 3-1 win over Shamrock Rovers. UCD had defeated Wanderers at the Carlisle Grounds in the opening group game.

The FAI cup campaign saw Wanderers knocked out at the first attempt by Kilkenny City. Wanderers lost 2-0 at the Carlisle Grounds.

With three promotion positions on offer from the First division this season Wanderers were always going to be one of the promotion favourites. Despite losing the opening game of the season, at home to UCD, Wanderers responded well with wins away to Cobh Ramblers (4-1) and at home to Sligo Rovers (4-0). Wanderers moved top of the table with a record 6-0 away win over Dundalk in which Colm Tresson scored a hat-trick. Wanderers stayed top of the table and remained unbeaten since the opening day of the season until they lost to promotion rivals UCD in Belfield Park in June. This defeat inspired the team, who then won five of their next six games, to go back top of the table by the end of June. Wanderers then hit a patchy part as defeats away to Galway United and Limerick City saw the team drop to third position in the table. Eamon Zayed became the first player to score four goals in one game for Bray Wanderers when he scored four in the 5-3 league win over Athlone Town at the Carlisle Grounds in October. Wanderers remained in third position until the end of the season. Promotion was clinched on the final day of the season away to Monaghan United with a 4-1 win.


New arrivals for the season were Paul Caffrey (Shamrock Rovers), Hugh Davey (UCD), Robert Dunne (Dundalk), Brian McGovern (Longford Town), William Tyrell (Drogheda United) and David Tyrell while Rumanian Andrei Georgescu and Kevin O’Brien (Waterford United) arrived in July.

Maurice Farrell and Graham O’Hanlon both retired.

Wanderers started their premier division campaign well, winning two and drawing two of their opening four games. After a home win over Waterford United in April Wanderers were fourth in the table. However, a disastrous run of eight defeats in their next nine games saw the club drop to ninth position by the beginning of July. Home wins over Finn Harps and St. Partick’s Athletic lifted Wanderers up to seventh place at the beginning of September. Three successive league defeats away to Cork City and at home to UCD and Drogheda united put more pressure on the team who remained just above the relegation places. In early October Wanderers defeated Waterford United at home and Shamrock Rovers away to virtually assure themselves of premier division survival. The season ended on a high with victories at home to Bohemians and away to Finn Harps to finish the season in seventh position.

Wanderers were defeated in the League cup in round one at home to Shamrock Rovers. In the FAI cup Wanderers defeated Cork non league side Avondale United (1-0) in Turners Cross in round three before defeating another non league side, Cherry Orchard, also by 1-0, at the Carlisle Grounds in round four. In the quarter final at the Carlisle Grounds Wanderers lead UCD by three goals before the Students staged a fight back and Wanderers held on for a 3-2 win. In the semi final Wanderers were defeated 2-1 by eventual cup winners Drogheda United 2-1 at United Park.


Newcomers for the season included Chris Deans (Waterford United) and Robbie Doyle returned from Bohemians. John Broderick while Ronan Ivory graduated to the senior team from the previous season’s Enda McGill under 21 cup winning team. Goalkeeper, Gary Rogers arrived in July from Dublin City. Departures from the previous season included Robbie McGuinness and Barry McGrory while Philip Keogh, Jody Lynch and Keith Long all retired. Wesley Charles moved to Galway United during the season after six seasons with the club.

Wanderers were defeated by St. Patrick’s Athletic at the Carlisle Grounds in the League cup in April. In the FAI cup third round Wanderers trailed First division Kildare County by two goals at the Carlisle Grounds before fighting back with late goals to earn a draw. Paul Caffrey scored the only goal in the replay at station road in Newbridge. Wanderers were knocked out in the fourth round away to Sligo Rovers.

In the league Wanderers failed to win any of their nine opening games and were rooted to the bottom of the table in mid May. Home wins over relegation rivals Longford Town and Waterford United lifted Wanderers up to tenth position. Dublin City folded in mid season. Despite suffering eight successive league defeats in June, July and August Wanderers remained in tenth position above Waterford United. During that period Wanderers managed only a single league point from eleven league games from June to the beginning of October. Wanderers had dropped to the bottom of the table by mid September after a 3-0 away defeat to rivals Waterford United at the RSC and a home defeat to Longford Town. Manager, Tony McGuirke, stepped down from his position and Eddie Gormley took over as Manager. Andrei Georgescu scored twice in a televised league win over Cork City to move Wanderers off the bottom. Wanderers drew their last three league games of the season, including away games against Derry City and Bohemians to finish the league season in tenth position and avoided the relegation play off


There were plenty of changes to the squad with almost a complete new team for the season. Newcomers included Alan Cawley (Waterford United), Gary Cronin and Stephen Gough from Longford Town, Clive Delaney (Derry City), Stephen Hurley and Paddy Kavanagh from UCD, Gary McCabe (Crumlin United), Derek Tyrell (Drogheda United), Steve Williams (Shelbourne) while Mark Duggan and Paul Dunphy both arrived from Bohemians. Ray Kenny and Philip Keogh both returned for their second spells with the club from Shamrock Rovers and Longford Town respectively.

From the previous season’s squad Colm James and Gary Rogers both departed to Galway United while other players to leave were Michael Roche and Paul O’Reilly. Kieran O’Brien, Brian McGovern and Ciaran Ryan all retired.

Wanderers were knocked out of the League cup in round 1 by Bohemians at Dalymount Park, losing 3-1 on the night. In the FAI cup, Wanderers equalled their record win when they defeated non league St. Mocktas 7-0 at the Carlisle Grounds in round two. Paul Dunphy scored a hat trick that afternoon to become only the second player ever to score a hat trick in the FAI cup for Wanderers. John Ryan had previously scored three in the 1990 final against St. Francis at Lansdowne Road. In round three Wanderers were defeated by St. Patrick’s Athletic (1-2) at the Carlisle Grounds.

In the premier division Wanderers lost away to Derry City on the opening day of the season but responded by defeating Bohemians (home) and Waterford United (away) to move up to fourth in the table. However, Wanderers picked up only two points from their next six league games to drop to ninth place in the table. Two successive home wins, in May, over Sligo Rovers and UCD stopped the downward slide. Wanderers remained outside the relegation zone with wins in July at home to Waterford United and away to Galway United. An eight game run with out a league win followed in August and September before Shamrock Rovers were defeated 3-0 at the Carlisle Grounds in early October. Wanderers drew five of their last seven games of the season and ended the season with a home win over Sligo Rovers to finish the season in 9th place.


New signings for the season included Kevin Doherty (Longford Town), Derek Foran (St. Patrick’s Athletic), Gavin Whelan (Drogheda United) and Alan Gough (Galway United) while Andy Myler, Ger Rowe and Derek Pender all came in from Shamrock Rovers. In July, Darly Robson joined from Galway United and Aidan O’Keeffe arrived on loan from Drogheda United. Youngsters Jake Kelly, Philip Knight and Dane Massey all made the breakthrough to the First team and made their debuts during the season.

Departures from the previous season’s squad were James O’Shea to Galway United, Chris Deans and Steve Williams moved on to Sporting Fingal, Clive Delaney to Derry City, Stephen Hurley and Paul Caffrey. Stephen Fox retired.

Wanderers reached the quarter final of the league cup with home wins over Athlone Town (3-0) and Shamrock Rovers (1-0) before going out to Galway United (0-3) in Terryland Park. Wanderers also reached the quarter final in the FAI cup after defeating Rockmount (3-0, away) and Dundalk (3-1, away, after 0-0 home draw). Once again, Galway United knocked Wanderers out at the quarter final stage. The sides drew 1-1 in Terryland Park before Galway won the replay 2-0 at the Carlisle Grounds.

Wanderers started the premier division campaign poorly and were rooted to the bottom of the table at the end of March, having failed to score a goal in their opening four league games. However, form improved dramatically with five wins and a draw from their next six league games, including four successive wins at one stage, to move up to fourth position by the middle of May. Despite two defeats, Wanderers were sixth by the end of May before a run of just one point from five games saw the team drop to eighth place. Wanderers remained in eighth place until the beginning of November when successive home wins, in high scoring games, over Cobh Ramblers (3-2) and Drogheda United (4-3) saw the team finish the league campaign in sixth position.


2009 was Bray Wanderers' fifth consecutive season as a Premier division club, something that the club had never achieved before.

Manager Eddie Gormley brought in a number of experienced players in Daire Doyle (Longford Town), Dave Mulcahy (Cork City) and Stephen Brennan (St. Patrick’s Athletic) while Chris Deans returned after a season with Sporting Fingal for the campaign.

Wanderers made a steady start drawing their first three games in the new look ten team premier division.

Wanderers enjoyed some memorable league victories early in the campaign, beating St. Patrick’s Athletic with a late Paul Byrne goal at the Carlisle, while Dane Massey scored the only goal as Wanderers beat Shamrock Rovers on their first ever visit to the Tallaght Stadium.

A run of seven defeats in the following nine games saw Wanderers drop to the foot of the table as rivals Drogheda United improved from their slow start.

As the season progressed some of the promising youngsters in Chris Shields, Dane Massey and John Mulroy emerged from the ranks of the A team and under 20 team to play leading roles in the team.

Despite notable league victories, away to Bohemians and at home to Cork City when Dave Mulcahy scored twice in injury time against his former club to earn a 3-2 win, Wanderers remained bottom till the end of the season.

When Derry City were expelled from the premier division due to licence irregularities, Wanderers earned a brief reprieve and entered the relegation play off. Wanderers lost 2-0 away to Drogheda United and then faced Sporting Fingal over two legs in the promotion/relegation play off. On a night of driving wind and rain, Wanderers lost the first leg 2-0. In the return leg, Wanderers almost pulled off a comeback but despite a brave effort, which included a goal by goalkeeper Chris O’Connor, Wanderers were defeated 4-2 on aggregate.


Wanderers earned a premier division reprieve when Cork City were demoted from the premier division by the FAI less than two weeks before the season started. With the transfer window closed Wanderers could only sign free agents to add to a squad that was all set to begin the season in division 1.

Manager Eddie Gormley did manage to sign some experienced players in Robbie Doyle and ex Shelbourne player Richie Baker. David Tyrell returned to the club for his second spell with the club. James Kavanagh, brother of former player Paddy, made his debut on the opening day of the season to become the youngest player ever to play a first team competitive fixture for the club, aged seventeen years and two months.

Wanderers picked up only a single point from their first eight league games before two goals from Jake Kelly and a late Robbie Doyle winner earned a 3-2 away win over Dundalk. Wanderers suffered some heavy defeats before winning away to Drogheda United in a crucial game. When the transfer window opened experienced players arrived in three former players, Gary Dempsey, Danny O’Connor and Matt Gregg. Wanderers form turned completely with league wins over St. Patricks Athletic, Dundalk (twice) and Galway United. Wanderers moved off the bottom and a draw at home to bottom side Drogheda United with two games remaining guaranteed a play off spot.

Wanderers were defeated 1-0 away to Galway in the premier division play off match and then faced Monaghan United in the relegation/promotion play off match. A scoreless draw away was followed by a scoreless home draw to send the game to extra time. Three minutes from the end of extra time Chris Shields turned the ball into his own net in attempting a clearance. Straight from the kick off the Monaghan keeper dropped a header from Shields and Jake Kelly equalised to send the match to penalties. Monaghan had the chance to win with the final penalty, Gary Shaw had earlier missed one of Wanderers penalties, but Shane Grimes fired wide. Monaghan’sPaul Whelan missed his sides eighth kick and Shields made amends for his earlier own goal by scoring to seal victory for Wanderers by eight penalties to seven.

In the FAI cup Wanderers reached the quarter final after beating Derry City in round 3 after a replay and defeating UCD in Round 4 at Belfield Bowl. Wanderers lost to Bohemians in the quarter final in Dalymount Park. The league cup campaign ended in round two with defeat away to St. Patrick’s Athletic.

Wanderers reached the final of the Leinster senior cup after home victories over Athlone Town, Dundalk and UCD in the earlier rounds. Shelbourne defeated Wanderers 4-0 in the final at the Carlisle.

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