Harry Kenny has admitted he has a "little regret" over the way his time with St Patrick's Athletic came to an end during the summer.

The former Bray supremo had taken over from Liam Buckley in October of 2018, but his reign at Richmond Park lasted just ten months.

Kenny brought in the likes of Brandon Miele, Gary Shaw, Mikey Drennan and Dave Webster before the start of the season, but the team never quite reached the level of performance that many had predicted they would.

There were high points, including an early league victory against Dundalk. But defeats against Waterford, as well as local rivals Shamrock Rovers and Bohemians began to lead to some disquiet on Emmet Road.

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The concession of a late goal at home against Norrkoping in the Europa League qualifiers was a blow, as a brave performance in Sweden couldn't rescue the tie.

The final straw came however with an FAI Cup defeat to struggling UCD at Belfield that saw Kenny decide that enough was enough.

Speaking on this week's RTÉ Soccer podcast, Kenny said: "They had been well beaten the previous week (10-1 against Bohemians), but we prepared in the right manner. We were awful that day, I've no qualms about it. I took a bit of stick for that [from supporters].

"I don't know why I really left. I've been in business, and all the rest of it. I am a little bit tough, at the same time, but that seemed to get to me, that match.

"I don't know why I really left"

"It was more of an embarrassment, more than anything else, after them getting that hammering by Bohs."

Kenny told the media in the immediate aftermath of the game that he was going to fight on, but a meeting the next day with Pat's owner Garrett Kelleher saw the manager and the club agree to move in different directions.

"I just said to Garrett that maybe he should let someone else have a go until the end of the season," admits Kenny.

"I've a small, little regret about that to be honest, because we were only a few points off Derry for a European spot. That was the goal at the start of the season, to get back into Europe.

"It is what it is. I probably didn't reflect on it long enough, because I spoke to the owner the day after the match. It was a bit of a knee-jerk reaction from myself."

Kenny during the 1987 season

Despite the disappointment of his 2019 season, Kenny is clear about his desire to get back in the saddle sooner rather than later.

"I'd love to get back into it, a glutton for punishment," he jokes.

"It's stressful enough doing it, but when you're a football man, and you love the game, and you've been in it a long time, you certainly want to have a go at it again."

Kenny was a goal-scorer the last time Shamrock Rovers won the FAI Cup. That was back in 1987, when they beat Sunday's opponents Dundalk 3-0 at Dalymount Park.

And while he admits that on paper his former club are the underdogs on Sunday, he says their performances against the Lilywhites this season give him hope of an upset on Lansdowne Road.

"Rovers gave them a great match up in Oriel, while they definitely should have beaten them at Tallaght.

"In a one-off game, with the players that Rovers have, they could easily turn the game. They certainly won't be intimidated by Dundalk.

Watch live coverage of Peamount United v Wexford Youths in the FAI Women's Cup final, and Dundalk v Shamrock Rovers in the FAI Cup Final from Aviva Stadium on RTÉ2 and the RTÉ Player from 11:45am on Sunday.  

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