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Cork City announce testimonial match for club legend Bennett

Turner’s Cross will host the game next month, with a percentage of the funds raised going to the Samaritans and the club’s academy.

Bennett is in his second spell with the Leesiders.
Bennett is in his second spell with the Leesiders.
Image: James Crombie/INPHO

CORK CITY WILL honour club legend Alan Bennett by hosting his testimonial match next month. 

On Saturday, 14 September, a Cork City Legends side will face a team made up of current players at Turner’s Cross, it has been announced today.  

The likes of Dave Barry, Declan Daly, Dave Hill, Tony Tynan, Damien Delaney, Achille Campion, John O’Flynn, Liam Kearney, Dan Murray and Derek Coughlan, Mark McNulty, Gearóid Morrissey, Conor McCarthy, Mark O’Sullivan, Ciara McNamara, Maggie Duncliffe, Katie McCarthy and Christina Dring have already been pencilled in to take part. 

Bennett, 37, will donate a percentage of the funds raised to the Samaritans in Cork and a contribution will also be made to the Cork City Academy, where he is part of the U13 management team. 

Since joining his local club as an 18-year-old back in 2000, the twice-capped Ireland international has gone on to enjoy a stellar career. 

The defender spent eight years in English football with Reading, Brentford, Wycombe Wanderers, Cheltenham and AFC Wimbledon before returning to the Leesiders in 2015. 

He has won two Premier Division titles and two FAI Cups during his two spells at City. 

“Thanks to Cork City FC for offering me for this opportunity to say thank you to Cork City FC supporters,” said Bennett. 

“I started out watching and dreaming from behind the wall as a City supporter, to always feeling privileged to play in front of the City support and soon I’m heading back behind the wall to continue supporting City.

14 September is a Cork City FC club day. A family day because that’s what we are, a big family.

“A percentage of funds raised will be going to Samaritans Cork — especially because of their work dealing with the mental health of Cork’s young people. We will also be giving funds to the Cork City FC academy, where I’m coaching the U13s.

“I believe that if we create an incredible environment for young players to grow and develop that can sustain a successful CCFC long in the future.”

Alan Bennett raises the trophy to the Cork fans with his teammates Lifting the Premier Division title in 2017. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Aileen Spitere, director of Cork Samaritans added: “We’re delighted and honoured that Alan has chosen us as the charity partner for his testimonial match. He’s had a fantastic career and it’s humbling to be associated with this game.

“It will also help raise vital funds for us to continue our emotional support helpline and outreach services for the Cork community and beyond. It will be a great occasion on 14 September”

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Ben Blake

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