Clonmel Town U11 team have reached the semi-final of the FAI National Cup for the first time in the clubs history. St. Kevin’s Boys of Dublin now stand between them and a place in the most prestigious game in schoolboy football, the National Cup Final. The big match takes place this Bank Holiday Monday at 2pm at Clonmel Sportsfield on what will be a massive occasion for the club.
This is a remarkable achievement from a group of young boys who have grown through the clubs academy since 5/6 years of age and play a wonderful brand of football coupled with extremely hard work and dedication. Clonmel Town have overcome very tough opposition to date with Nenagh, Templemore and Waterford Villa accounted for in the earlier rounds and then Blarney, Carrick, and Kingdom Boys from Tralee setting up a very tense quarter final versus Avenue United from Ennis which Clonmel Town won 1-0.
The Clonmel Town boys have trained really hard since last August and through a very harsh winter were one of the only teams in the country training and playing in the frost, ice and snow. This committment has paid huge dividend so far with the team proving to be one of the fittest in the country lasting the pace right to the last whistle in every game.
St. Kevin’s Boys will prove to be a serious test for the local lads having produced such great Irish players as Liam Brady, Ian Harte and Damien Duff. However they will need to be at their best as Clonmel Town have an excellent goalkeeper in Rowan Wagner and a back four as solid as any in the country and a unique situation where all midfielders and strikers are capable match winners on any given day. They are also excellent at set pieces and will threaten the St. Kevin’s goal on every occasion.
On Bank Holiday Monday at 2pm when the Town boys step onto the pitch at the Cashel Road complex one thing is certain that this group of young boys will give it their all and continue to do themselves, their families, friends, schools and club proud. They know they are only one game away from the final and with the home support behind them believe that they can make all their hard work pay off and become the first Clonmel Town team to reach a National Final.
This week the manager of the Clonmel Town Junior team Jamie O’Flaherty paid tribute to the U/11 squad and its management team led by Paul Scully.
“It is a fantastic day for the club and I am sure that the boys will be more than a match for any team having watched them come through tight games on a number of occasions. The preparation of Paul Scully and his team has been second to none in the country and it is little wonder that the boys are now competing at this high level. These boys have been with us since they were 5 years old and are the future of our club and the good habits they have developed both on and off the pitch are the foundations on which this club are based,” said Jamie O’Flaherty.
The squad for the day is as follows-
Rowan Wagner -- Has delivered his best performances in the cup to date and will no doubt be at his best again next week
Daniel Traas -- Footballing full back who loves to get forward, excellent passer and defender.
Aidan Tobin -- Excellent defender who can play anywhere across the back, probably the best header of the ball in the country.
Jack Harney -- Tough tackling full back who has been outstanding all season for this team.
Colm Power -- Top quality centre half who is lightening quick and can read the game above his years and very comfortable on the ball
James Brophy -- Never say die defender who gives 100% every time.
David Burke -- The rock in the defence, best tackler in the club who loves attacking the ball.
Glen Cullinane -- The versatile captain of the team who is equally comfortable at full back or in midfield Luke Kiely -- Having a fantastic season with an amazing left foot who can score from anywhere.
Cathal McKeown -- The midfield engine who can cover an enormous amount of ground in a game
Oisin Napier - The play maker who makes this team tick with his fantastic passing skills and having an amazing season in centre midfield
Killian Crowe -- The pocket rocket who has everything a footballer needs, passing, heading,tackling, who has scored some wonder goals this season
Ryan Lambe -- Exceptionally skillful player who with determination and hard work will be a real threat on Monday
Conal Kennedy -- A real handful up front in the Shane Long mould who can hustle defenders and has the ability to punish them with good finishing skills Aaron Doyle -- The fox in the box who is always likely to come up with a goal
Daniel Foley -- Recent addition to the squad because of his finishing skills, only needs half a chance to score with either foot
Niall Hoctor -- Energetic midfielder who can run and pass a player with huge potential