A tenacious, tough-tackling midfielder, the arrival of Darren Murphy during the 2008-9 campaign added some steel when it was needed most. Opinion was divided over his performances after his arrival, perhaps. But there is no disputing that Murphy’s role was crucial to the success of the team. Murphy’s first full season with us saw Graham Westley turn to him as his midfield strong-man; freeing up other midfielders to press forward.
An under-appreciated role on the football field, it was nonetheless vital to our promotion push. But the midfielder’s perceived lack of discipline at times came as an occupational hazard for a player of his type. Mind you, a red card against Cambridge United in the 2008-9 playoffs ranks as one of the greatest officiating farces. Well, in our mind anyway.
After scoring against Portsmouth in our first ever League Cup tie in 2010, Murphy suffered a broken leg and spent most of our debut Football League year out injured. He returned towards the end of the campaign, but injury was never far away going into 2011-2. And a brief loan spell away from the club in 2012 indicated his time with us was coming to an end. It ultimately proved right; Gary Smith releasing him in the summer. In Boro’ folklore, however, he’ll always be associated with one of the club’s greatest ever squads.
Darren Murphy: After Boro’
After leaving the Lamex, Murph spent time at Port Vale and Macclesfield Town. He also had a spell at Woking, which no poor soul ever deserves. For a brief time in 2013, Boro’ brought him back in. But his time in English football would come to an end that year; the midfielder returning to his native Cork to continue his career on the other side of the Irish Sea. Injury was never far away, however, and he had to step away from senior football.
Stats do not include expunged Chester City fixtures in 2009-10.