Newry promotion: It's Roy of the Rovers stuff - Mullen

Mark Hughes celebrates scoring Newry's third goal in the victory over Carrick on Wednesday night
Mark Hughes celebrates scoring Newry's third goal in the victory over Carrick on Wednesday night

Newry City boss Darren Mullen says clinching a place in the Premiership after a fourth promotion in five years is "unreal".

A 3-1 victory over Carrick Rangers on Wednesday gave City a 6-3 aggregate win in the promotion/relegation play-off.

"We've put a bit of pride back in Newry football - it was on it's knees and the gates were locked," added Mullen.

"It's Roy of the Rovers stuff but we've worked so hard to get back to this level and we're worthy of that place."

Stephen Hughes, Mark McCabe and Mark Hughes were on target at Taylor's Avenue to secure the victory.

It's been an amazing climb up the leagues for Newry just six years after being forced out of business.

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Newry City clinch Irish Premiership promotion

"People have asked before what is the secret. There is no secret as we've just worked so hard and we've an honest bunch of players," said Mullen.

"If you work hard you get your rewards and this is some reward for us. It's unreal!"

For Carrick manager David McAlinden it's a time for reflection and he will discuss his future with the Rangers board in the next fortnight.

"I've always said I'd like to be here a long time and try to do something different with the club, to try and build something," he said.

"But ultimately when you are not successful on the pitch you don't get that opportunity.

"So I'll have to sit down with the board and see what direction we want to go in."