DERRY CITY's Ronan Hale says he needs no extra motivation ahead of Wednesday's FAI Cup quarter-final against Bohemians after getting his first taste of cup success on Sunday.
The 20 year-old Belfast lad netted the opening goal in the 3-1 victory over Cobh Ramblers in the EA Sports Cup Final at Brandywell Stadium.
Taking advantage of a defensive error, he cut inside James McSweeney onto his left foot and rolled it past goalkeeper, Adam Mylod at the near post with 23 minutes on the clock. It was his 12th goal of the season in all competitions and it set Derry on their way to an 11th league cup triumph.
Over 100 supporters from Newington in his native north Belfast arrived on Foyleside to support Ronan and his brother Rory. And Ronan was delighted to share the experience with his one year-old daughter Mya who he carried out onto the pitch prior to kick-off.
Describing her as his 'lucky charm', Ronan is hoping the fortune carries over to Wednesday night when they meet the in-form Bohemians for a place in the FAI Cup semi-finals where Cork City await.
"It couldn't have ended any better," said the Republic of Ireland U21 international. "It was a great win and I got my goal early in the first half and that set the pace.
"It was great to have my daughter out to walk out with me and win it with her beside me. She's brought me the good luck," he beamed.
"It's absolutely brilliant and I'd like to shout out to everybody who came. It was a class crowd and it helped us big time.
"We have a big game on Wednesday and that win today will boost us big time. You can see everyone is buzzing. Hopefully we win on Wednesday now."
And he believes, with the first piece of silverware in six years in the bag, the win will give the players huge confidence for Wednesday's crunch clash with the Gypsies.
"It will give us a lot of confidence," he added. "I know they (Bohs) are on a good run and after beating Cork there but we've just won a cup final and there's no more motivation needed."
He's enjoyed a fantastic debut season in senior football during his loan spell from Birmingham City. Scoring his first senior hat-trick against Limerick, his first goal in European football against Dinamo Minsk and a first international goal for Ireland U21s, he's enjoyed a memorable campaign.
However, he's hoping it's not the end of the celebrations as he dares to dream of another cup final next November with the club potentially just two home games away from an FAI Cup showpiece at the Aviva Stadium.
"I'm just taking it as it comes. I love the game of football. Scoring is a bonus because it's my job as well. I'm just buzzing to be playing."