Accrington Stanley’s on loan Burnley defender Jimmy Dunne admits it has been a ‘crazy season’ and doesn’t know if he is ever going to take his League Two medal off!
The 20-year-old came to the Wham Stadium for some experience in January but has ended up being an integral part of the Stanley side which soared to the League Two title.
The Reds have won 18 of their last 21 games and top the table by six points with a game to play after beating Lincoln 1-0 yesterday.
“I didn’t even know what a League Two medal looked like and I don’t ever intend to take it off,” smiled Dunne.
“I have said it a million times, I never expected anything like this when I came on loan. I came for the development, for the learning and for the experience.
“I never thought I would be winning and winning a league and an important league at that. It’s so important to the club and it means everything. It’s what dreams are made of.
“I couldn’t be happier for the lads, the fans, the staff, the coaches, everyone connected with Accrington Stanley.”
The centre half has rarely been on the losing side but admitted each time there has been a hitch, he has learnt from it.
“We had the chance to get promoted against Exeter and we slipped up so we made sure it happened the next game.
“Then we were going for the title and we had a slip-up at Newport on Tuesday but we made sure there wasn’t to be another slip-up yesterday. It’s important you learn from every setback or mistake and that’s something I have done. You have to keep improving and doing the right thing.”
And he says John Coleman and the Stanley coaching staff deserve all the plaudits they are receiving.
“The best compliment I can pay is that if I ever was to be a manager, I have learnt the importance of team morale.
“This team would die for each other, they love each other and it’s the best team morale I have ever been a part of and I now know how important that is.
“A great example was against Lincoln where it wasn’t the best game but we fought to the end and in the end our talent came through. That came from team morale, a belief in each other and we will do anything for each other.”
With Stanley winning the title, Burnley on the brink of the Europa League and Dunne’s other loan club Barrow surviving in the National League, it’s been a good weekend for the Republic of Ireland Under 21 player.
“That’s pretty crazy. Burnley are almost in Europe, Accrington win the league and Barrow stay up – that’s a dream for me. It’s pretty amazing.”