Boost for the Peas as Brierley signs back with the champions

Avril Brierley signs back with Peamount United in 2024

Avril Brierley signs back with Peamount United in 2024 Credit: Al Robinson (ETPhotos)

Striker Avril Brierley continues to ride the crest of a peak in mental and physical fitness, following her departure from DLR Waves, re-signing for Peamount United for a second season.

While the Balinteer native’s surge in form and confidence on the ball does not correlate with her decision to leave her former club specifically, a continued swell in performance has followed the 27-year-old player’s departure.

As revealed in a refreshingly honest (and relatable) interview with The 42’s Paul Fennessy, Brierley stated that following a challenging period throughout the pandemic, she sought the help of a therapist, bolstered by the support of her former manager Graham Kelly.

Armed with the self-awareness and tools with which to keep a draining negative internal narrative in check, one which was driven by a lack of self-confidence and would serve to dominate the formative years of her career, leaving Avril mentally and physically exhausted before the half-time whistle blew, the number 18 has now turned a corner at Greenogue.

Having successfully unshackled the limiting beliefs that constrained her, the talented attacker is determined to make up for those lost minutes on the pitch.

“I want to get on the ball now because I know I’m good enough,” she stated simply. “I’m playing in the top league in Ireland - this didn’t just accidentally happen.”

(In a nod to the ‘Penneys’ esque retort that involuntarily escapes the lips of an Irish person who fears being perceived as having a certain view of themselves, Brierley sought to clarify her new found self-assuredness with the disclaimer “Obviously, there’s a fine line, you don’t just become an asshole. I’m still obviously really aware of how I am.”)

So Brierley is still human.

A fighter?

You bet.

The ‘imposter’ has revealed itself to be the ghost of a player she has now bravely exorcised.

And in what is shaping up to be the most competitive League of Ireland season yet, the reigning Women’s Premier Division champions will need every player to come out swinging.