Category: Youth

Youth Championship Day 2019: Admirals Are Champions

The Cork Admirals have secured their second IAFA Youth Championship in a row after defeating the Belfast Knights in yesterday’s final.

Cork Admirals IAFA Youth Champions 2019

Prior to the youth playoffs, the Dublin Rebels youth team played the Antrim Jets youth team. The first half was a close affair, with the Rebels holding a 9-0 lead at the break, before the Rebels asserted control in the second half, scoring 20 unanswered points to win 29-0.

In the first semi-final, there was 39 points scored in the first half as the Belfast Knights lead the Louth Mavericks 27-12 at the half. The Knights extended their lead with two touchdowns whilst the Mavericks could only answer with one touchdown, meaning the game ended 40-19 in favour of the Belfast team and their place in the final confirmed.

Louth Mavericks Youth Team 2019

The second semi final saw the defending champions Cork Admirals take a commanding 20-0 lead over the South Dublin Panthers into the half time break. The Panthers responded with a touchdown of their own at the start of the second half, but this would fall short of what was needed as the Admirals booked their place in the final with a 26-6 win.

The experience the Admirals have in youth football proved to be the deciding factor in the final. The game started with an Admirals touchdown on the very first play. The Knights responded with a score of their own, but the Admirals soon found their way into the game and held a 24-7 lead at half time. The Knights, in their inaugural year of youth football, showed grit and determination but could not match the might of the Admirals, as the Cork team scored 20 unanswered points in the second half to secure back to back national titles.

Admirals & Knights after the championship game

Congratulations to the Admirals on a marvellous unbeaten campaign. The MVP of the championship game was awarded to Admirals QB Michael Hand.

MVP: Admirals QB Michael Hand

It has been a historic season which has seen records broken in terms of youth teams competing (7) and the number of 15-18 year olds participating (104). Well done and thank you to Director of Youth Football Bill Dougherty for a great season and to all the clubs who participated, particularly the volunteers and coaches who gave up their time to make this happen – the future is bright for American football in Ireland.

Thank you to our Youth Championship Day partner Aulo Fitness for supporting the event.

Youth Championship Day 2019: Cork Admirals

On to the second semi-final of tomorrows Youth Championship Day – we chatted with Alan Lomasney of defending champions Cork Admirals. The Admirals will play the South Dublin Panthers at 14:30.

Your team earned a spot in Youth Championship Sunday. Are your players excited to be playing for the right to be called national youth champions?

“Our players are thrilled to be playing for a National title this Sunday, they have been working very hard in practice for the last 6 weeks to get a chance to play for a championship.”

How much progression of the players and the team as a whole have you seen from day one to now?

“We have seen a huge progression in the lads individually and in the team as a whole. When they started, a lot of them didn’t know anything about football and now they are turning into a solid team.”

What do you think was the key element in the success of your squad?

“The key element in the success of our squad has been the enthusiasm and dedication to training from the players. They are always eager to learn, always train hard and it has been that work ethic that has led them to the playoffs.”

Is there a particular player or players that demonstrate the kind of leadership skills that are so critical to success in American football? Where might you envision these guys’ level of play in two or three years?

“To be honest, all of guys have shown leadership since they started. They have shown leadership in different ways both on and off the field. If all our guys stay playing football for the next couple of years, they will all contribute to the senior squad.”

Coach Lomasney, the Admirals have built up a lot of experience running a youth program. In your estimate, how long does it take to turn a raw youth recruit into a skilful American football player? Any tips for our youth coaches across Ireland?

“This is our third year running a youth program and the standard of new guys that are trying out just gets better and better. Each player differs depending on whether they watch football or play sports in general, but realistically I think you can coach a recruit into a skilful player in a couple of months. If I can offer any advice for other coaches, I would say that giving the new youths a safe, fun, interesting and structured practice environment is a good first step to keeping and maintaining the interest. It’s a tough sport so keeping it fun is a huge part of the process.”

Your team is back vying for a national championship again, how many players do you have from last years championship team on the roster and how much does last years championship experience help your team succeed on Sunday?

“We have 6 players from last year’s team this year and they have been great leaders for the team. Some of the guys are playing different positions this year so it has been a learning experience for them as well as helping mentor their new teammates. I think this year’s team has its own identity so the experience of last year’s guys will help, but it’s all about the guys playing together.”

Coach, you must have seen a lot of development of your players since that first training session till now. How rewarding is it for you to be a part of a young players initial development and introducing American football to a new generation?

“It is hugely rewarding to be involved in the beginning of these lads playing careers, we have seen them improving each and every week. It’s a privilege for us as a group of coaches to introduce them to the sport.”

Now that the season is at an end, regardless of what happens on Sunday, was it worth it for your club to expend the time, effort, and resources on youth football?

“The Admirals consider our youth program an integral part of our club. The effort and time involved is an investment in the growth of the club and is vital to the continued success we have on the field.”

Youth Championship Day 2019: Belfast Knights

Next up in our Youth Championship series, we spoke to Belfast Knights Youth Team Head Coach Jordan Clinton. The Knights take on the Louth Mavericks tomorrow at 13:30.

Your team earned a spot in the Youth Championship tomorrow. Are your players excited to be playing for the right to be called national youth champions?

“Absolutely, they are very excited to take the field on Sunday. It’s clear to us coaches that this group of guys love playing the sport so to be able to play it for a national title is a great opportunity for them.”

This is your first year fielding a youth team. Now that you’ve reached a successful result can you describe what was the most difficult part of getting your club’s youth program going?

“We were very lucky that, when the prospect of a youth team went out, we had no shortage of players willing to come forward and help coach. I suppose our main difficulty was tailoring our wealth of knowledge as players and bringing it all right down to basics for the guys, as a lot of our coaches are relatively new to coaching. However, we caught stride and our confidence in coaching has grown along with our players’ confidence on the pitch. Having that support network of dedicated coaches has been a cornerstone in our youth team’s success.”

How much progression of the players and the team as a whole have you seen from day one to now?

“It’s crazy how far these guys have come. They take everything onboard and they give 100% to every drill and exercise and the results of their hard work shine through on gamedays. Our coaches truly believe the sky is the limit for our youth players so it will be interesting to see what the future holds. As a team, everything seems to have clicked into place. We’ve seen these guys go from a group of lads standing about before warmup on their first week to a close-knit unit in 8 weeks, unbelievable progression from the team.”

What do you think was the key element in the success of your squad?

“I believe the key element in our success has been our guys’ ability to knuckle down and play good, safe football on gameday. Their transition from controlled drills during training to lining up on gameday was seamless. They play with a strong confidence and that I believe is the key element as there is only so much we as coaches can do before they take the field.”

Is there a particular player or players that demonstrate the kind of leadership skills that are so critical to success in American football? Where might you envision these guys’ level of play in two or three years?

“This is a very difficult question as I could very easily give an answer to this for all of the lads. To name one, our centre Ethan McKechnie has come in leaps and bounds as a player new to the sport and he has demonstrated his ability to rally the other lads which was very evident in our tie with the Mavericks. We have had a couple guys take interest in stepping up to senior football and I have every faith that they will transition well and see success like they have in Youth football.”

Last time around you ended up with a tie against your semi-final opponent. How do you see your team breaking the impasse and coming out on top this Sunday?

“A big part of our tie with the Mavericks was mentality. Not once did I see our lads’ heads drop. Instead, they went out with the determination to turn it around and that’s exactly what they did. A mentality like that is hard to coach but these guys have it from the get-go and if they combine it with the level of play that they have been playing at then they will certainly give the Mavericks another good game this Sunday.”

You must have seen a lot of development of your players since that first training session till now. How rewarding is it for you to be a part of a young players initial development and introducing American football to a new generation?

“Honestly as a player it makes me nervous for my starting spot next year! All jokes aside, as a coach, I am extremely grateful that I have been given the opportunity to introduce this sport to these guys. To say it is rewarding is an understatement, I truly believe this is one of the best things I have gotten involved in, next to getting involved with the sport in general. This revitalized Youth Program sets the scene for an unparalleled growth of American Football in Ireland and, with youth and senior teams all over the country, makes it more accessible than ever before. Very excited for what this holds for the sport as a whole.”

Now that the season is at an end, regardless of what happens on Sunday, was it worth it for your club to expend the time, effort, and resources on youth football?

“100%. Going into this off season we, as a club, prioritised the youth team and put a lot of hours into making it happen and all it has done is pay dividends ever since. The youth team has helped revitalise our club after a disappointing senior season, generate publicity for the Knights and the sport as a whole and, most importantly, given these guys an opportunity to take their interest in them sport to a new level and allow them to take the field as players. Definitely worth the time, effort and resources.”

Youth Championship Day 2019: Louth Mavericks

With the Youth Championship Day on Sunday fast approaching, we wanted to chat with the coaches of this year’s four playoff competitors about youth football in general and the interesting match ups that will determine the Youth National Champions. First up, we chatted to Aaron Finley of the Louth Mavericks.

Are your players excited to be playing for the right to be called national youth champions?

“Our players are extremely excited for the games this weekend! Throughout the season, they have been feeling pumped going into every game but the chance to play for a national championship brings a whole other level of excitement.”

This is your first year fielding a youth team. Now that you’ve reached a successful result, can you describe what was the most difficult part of getting your club’s youth program going?

“Recruitment was definitely the most challenging aspect of getting the program up and running. Take up was slow to begin with and at one stage we thought we might not gain enough players to enter a team this year. We were delighted to receive an influx of players just in time for the start of the season.”

How much progression of the players and the team have you seen from day one to now?

“The majority of our players, bar 1 or 2 that had previously played on our flag football team, came to us with absolutely no experience or knowledge of American football and through hard work and commitment they have turned into competent players who would fit right in among our senior kitted team. I have no doubt that they will all continue to develop into great players. As a whole, the players have built a great bond with each other and are good friends on and off the field.”

What do you think was the key element in the success of your squad?

“The key to our success this year has been down to the commitment and hardworking nature of the players. Attendance at training sessions was consistent and they gave it their all in every game, despite the fact that the entire team had to play ironman football.”

Is there a particular player or players on your squad that demonstrates the kind of leadership skills that are so critical to success in American football? Where might you envision these guys’ level of play in two or three years?

“I believe that all of our players have played a big part in us reaching the semi-finals, and without any of them we would not be in this position. One player that stands out as a leader within the group is our quarterback and captain, Nathan Hearty. He was one of the 3 original players at our very first training session and since day 1, he has led by example in everything that he does. He will be one to watch out for in the future.”

Last time around you ended up with a tie against your semi-final opponent. How do you see your team breaking the impasse and coming out on top this Sunday?

“Our game against the Knights will be very interesting. When we last played them, it was our very first match in youth football. I feel that our players have grown since our first meeting with the Knights but I also anticipate that they will enter the game with a slightly different game plan now that they know our strengths and weaknesses. I expect a very close game, but I have every faith in our lads coming out on top.”

As a coach, how rewarding is it for you to be a part of a young players initial development and introducing American football to a new generation?

“It has been very rewarding to see the players develop and grow. We put a lot of thought and effort into preparing effective training sessions so it’s great to see this hard work pay off.”

Now that the season is close to an end, regardless of what happens on Sunday, was it worth it for your club to expend the time, effort and resources on youth football?

“Yes, regardless of what happens on Sunday I am proud of our players for what they have achieved this season. However the season is not over yet and we will go out on Sunday leaving everything on the field.”

Aulo Fitness – Youth Championship Day 2019 Sponsor

IAFA is delighted to announce our partnership with Aulo Fitness for the upcoming Youth Championship Day this Sunday.

Aulo is an online global fitness marketplace designed to help people from all over the world find their perfect online personal coach and achieve their unique fitness goals. If you are looking for your next online coach, check them out at www.aulofit.com

Thank you for supporting the next generation of American football players in Ireland!

Sundays games will take place at the Sport Ireland Campus, Dublin with the schedule as follows:

Game 1, 10:30 – Cill Dara Crusaders v Dublin Rebels

Game 2, 11:30 – Antrim Jets v Dublin Rebels

Game 3, 12:30 – Antrim Jets v Cill Dara Crusaders

Game 4, 13:30 – Semi-Final 1, Belfast Knights v Louth Mavericks

Game 5, 14:30 – Semi-Final 2, Cork Admirals v South Dublin Panthers

Game 6, 15:30 – 3rd Place Game (semi-final losers)

Game 7, 16:30 – Championship Game (semi-final winners)

Entry is free with parking available on site – please see below map for directions.

Youth Football: Westmeath Minotaurs Joe Kinahan

In our continuing series of interviews focusing on youth American football here in Ireland, we chatted with a former youth player and now starting senior level quarterback, Joe Kinahan from the Westmeath Minotuars, to get his thoughts on the importance of youth American football.

Could you first tell us how you became interested in American football? 

“It happened by accident, to be honest. I got bored of FIFA, as does every 11-year-old with the attention span of a doughnut, and started looking up free soccer games online. I stumbled across a game called Speedback one day, gave that a go thinking it was to do with soccer, and suddenly found myself fascinated with this new American sport. We had Sky at home so I begged to have control of the remote for that Sunday for a few hours. Safe to say, I haven’t looked back since!”

How did you find out about the Minotaurs youth program and what convinced you to give the sport a try? 

“When I joined the club, there wasn’t actually a youth program in place. In fact, I don’t think there was a youth program in place for any team in Ireland, and there certainly wasn’t a league setup like the one we have now. My mam saw an ad for the Minotaurs in the paper recruiting senior members not long after the club was established, and I decided to show up one session in January. That training really lit a fire in me, even at 12 years old, and I got the sense that this may be something that I’m going to love for a long, long time. When I finally got into pads when the youth program started a few years later, it was 100% confirmation, so I’m grateful it did eventually get setup.”

Joe in action earlier this year

What were the early training sessions like and what was your main motivation to stick with it as a youth?

“The early days of training were very focused on fundamentals of tackling and blocking, as I believe it should be when you’re coaching young people. I think too many coaches try to bypass this and overlook poor technique in the hope that “they’ll get better” so they can move on to scheming. The coaching staff we had looking after us made sure to emphasize the basics of football to make sure we became better players. I think it was a combination of that and everything else you mentioned there that kept myself and the rest of the lads coming back for more.”

Looking back on your youth football career, how important do you think that experience was to help you earn the starting QB job on the senior team?

“More important than I can ever stress. I know that’s a clichéd thing to say, but I mean it. The staff that my class, if you will, had coaching us were there not just to stay involved in the game for their own good, not only to teach a new generation of footballers this wonderful sport, but to make every single one of us better football players than they were. Having someone like Coach Conor Brennan, who I’m surprised isn’t sick of dealing with me at this stage honestly, there to answer every football question under the sun made me a better quarterback. Having someone dedicate themselves to teaching me how to throw a football, how to move in and out of the pocket, and how to command an offence… if I turned out to be no good it certainly wouldn’t have been the programmes fault!”

The Antrim Jets and Dublin Rebels in action in the 2019 Youth League

Last year the Minotaurs had their best season ever, making it to the IAFL1 final and unfortunately suffering a loss in a very tight game. How important do you think the Minotaurs youth program was to last year’s success? 

“I think if you look at our squad and you look at how many have come through the youth programme, there’s no question as to how important the programme is. Myself at quarterback, Rafael Monteiro at running back and linebacker, Jack Lynch at receiver, David Walsh as our flex-type, Liam and Conor Dougherty at guard and tight end, Dean Johnston at tackle, Ross McCadden on the D-line… all of us started at nothing, and now we’re all starters. I think that sums it up quite well.”

We hear you’re now coaching the Westmeath youth players. We understand that your youth team is not competing this year but is still training. What is the long-term goal of your youth programme and will you compete next year?

“The short-term aim is definitely to compete next year anyway. We have been working well and I’m very pleased with that I’ve seen from the lads so far. When you have a group of young players that have athleticism to spare and an ability to soak up new information like sponges, though, I guess it’s no surprise that I’m impressed! Even in the short time we’ve worked with each other, I have a feeling that we’ll be adding to that list of youth-graduates-turned-senior-team-starters sooner rather than later. I guess that’s the endgame: to make sure at least some of these guys become staples of our senior team. If we can do that, then we’ve achieved our goal.”

The Cork Admirals and South Dublin Panthers youth teams after a match in the 2019 Youth League

What would you say to a club that is thinking about investing the time, effort, and resources into a youth program? Is it worth the effort? 

“Let me put it to you this way, as a graduate, as a current player and as a coach: would you rather spend a couple of hundred euro on a few extra footballs that you don’t really need, a few tackle bags to add to the collection that’s already gotten too big, and a few new fancy water bottles; or, would you rather spend that money on a few coaching courses and pitch rental to develop what will a) make you a financial profit within the next year, and b) be your starting line-up within the next three? I know what my answer is anyway!”

Youth League 2019: Dublin Rebels

The most decorated club in Ireland joins the youth league this year, as the Dublin Rebels have entered a team for the first time. The Rebels have a long and storied history and hope that the future of the club will be just as successful with the implementation of a youth football programme.

How are preparations for the youth season coming along?

“We are really excited at how quickly our players have picked up the sport. Preparations have gone well so far and we’re confident that once the lads take the field, they’ll be able to play some great football!”

What do you hope to achieve this season?

“We’re hoping that we can put our youth players in a position to succeed. Both this season and in the future.”

How important is youth football to your clubs’ overall football programme?

“To put it simply, Youth Football is the future of our club on and off the field.”

What key points do you emphasise to your players?

“Technique, commitment, safety. All 3 are key to creating a successful programme.”

What advice would you give to anyone thinking of starting to play American football?

“American Football is a unique sport that has a position for every type of athlete. We would advise anyone thinking of playing the sport to believe in their own ability and get started.”

Join The Dublin Rebels

The Rebels youth team trains from 11:45am to 3pm at 3 Rock Rovers Hockey Club, Ballinteer every Sunday. They provide helmet and shoulder pads etc, all you need is a gumshield and boots. Message their Facebook or Instagram pages to find out more details.

Youth League 2019: Cill Dara Crusaders

The fifth team competing in this year’s youth league is one of the originals, only under a different banner. The Cill Dara Crusaders have adopted the previous South Kildare Soldiers Youth Team and hope to emulate the success the Soldiers had at this level. The IAFL 2 club are keen to develop this section of their programme and get their young players some much needed match experience.

How are preparations for the youth season coming along?

“It’s been a slow start for us as we struggled to confirm training grounds, but we are starting to roll now.”

What do you hope to achieve this season?

“This year is about building for the future. We have a team of young rookies who have no experience at all and need to learn the basics. Winning games is important, and we hope to give a challenging experience to everyone we play.”

How important is youth football to your clubs’ overall football programme?

“Youth football is vital to the sport as a whole. Every team should be getting involved. Even if you only have two players, get them onto one of the other teams. Ourselves and the Cowboys have used each other’s players through the years, and it has been of huge benefit.”

What key points do you emphasise to your players?

“Teamwork. Family. Effort.”

What advice would you give to anyone thinking of starting to play American football?

“Try it out. Try different clubs and find one that suits you. Enjoy the greatest sport I was lucky enough to find. It doesn’t matter who you are, you will find a spot on a football team for you.”

Join The Cill Dara Crusaders

The Crusaders youth team trains from 12pm to 1.30pm at the Newbridge College Grounds on Sundays. They provide the equipment, all you need is boots and a gumshield. Text or call 0879507054, email cilldaracrusaders@gmail.com or message the Cill Dara Crusaders Facebook page for more information.

Youth League 2019: Louth Mavericks

The Louth Mavericks are another new team to the youth league this year, as the IAFL 1 club looks to build on their senior and flag programmes. The Mavericks are based in Dundalk and have been working hard to give 15 to 18 year olds in the area the opportunity to play American football.

How are preparations for the youth season coming along?

“Slowly but surely. As it is our first year developing a youth team, it took a while to get numbers up to where we wanted them to be but now, we’re starting to look ready to take on the league.”

What do you hope to achieve this season?

“The main focus of youth this year is to prepare new players and give them a basis in which they can enter adult football with key skills and techniques, as well as offering something new and different to those who might not have the most experienced sporting backgrounds and skills.”

How important is youth football to your clubs’ overall football programme?

“Recruitment is always a process which takes many forms and our youth team is an important part of that.”

What key points do you emphasise to your players?

“As all coaches should at all levels – we drill the fundamentals. Heads up, safe tackling. The basics of routes. How to block and get off blocks. Things that all football players should know.”

What advice would you give to anyone thinking of starting to play American football?

“Our advice would be to come on down to a training session. No one knows how to play until they do it and don’t worry about a lack of knowledge or fitness, that’s what the training sessions are for!”

Join The Louth Mavericks

The Mavericks youth team trains from 6pm to 7.30pm at the DKIT fields on Wednesdays. They provide pads and helmets free of charge for all youth members. Text or WhatsApp 0858172974 if you’re interested in joining or message the Louth Mavericks Facebook or Instagram pages.

Youth League 2019: Antrim Jets

The Antrim Jets formed a youth team in 2018 and will compete in the league for the first time when they are one of the hosts for game week 1 next Sunday. It is an exciting time for the IAFL 2 side, having prepared for so long, they are now ready to take on IAFA Youth League.

How are preparations for the youth season coming along?

“The players and coaches are looking forward to it and are eager to see their hard work pay off.”

What do you hope to achieve this season?

“We hope to give the players experience in full contact football and to prepare them for the next step into senior football.”

How important is youth football to your clubs’ overall football programme?

“We feel that youth football is vital as it teaches the fundamentals to the youth players and ensures a steady flow of experienced players into the senior team.”

What key points do you emphasise to your players?

“Play safe, play fair, play hard.  But most importantly, have fun.”

What advice would you give to anyone thinking of starting to play American football?

“It is the greatest team sport in the world. You’ll make lifelong friends and learn how to be disciplined and a team player.”

Join The Antrim Jets

The Jets youth team trains every Sunday at the Antrim Forum, from 1pm to 3pm.  Players only need boots & gumshield as the team supplies the rest. Contact the Antrim Jets Youth Team Facebook page or email gerrymccabe26@hotmail.co.uk for more information.

 

Youth League 2019: South Dublin Panthers

Next up in our youth team interviews, we chat with 2019 Shamrock Bowl finalists and youth league debutants, the South Dublin Panthers.

How are preparations for the youth season coming along?

“Preparations are coming along great; we have a great bunch of enthusiastic athletes who are all eager to play and learn. This has made training sessions flow really well and allowed the athletes to pick up the fundamentals really quickly.”

What do you hope to achieve this season?

“While winning is always fun, our goal first and foremost is to give our athletes a fun environment to learn the fundamentals of the game. We have a great team of qualified coaches with both Shamrock Bowl and international experience and believe that we can put the athletes the best possible position to allow them to learn, have fun and succeed.”

How important is youth football to your clubs’ overall football programme?

“We all know how much of a niche American football is in Ireland and because of this we believe youth football is not just important to our organisation, but to the sport in Ireland in general. Youth football allows more people to get involved in all areas of the sport, from coaching and playing to watching.

With regards to the Panthers, youth football gives us another avenue to get athletes and coaches on board. It also extends our reach to youth football ages and allows us to give these guys a chance to play football before turning 18.”

What key points do you emphasise to your players?

“First things first we emphasise that the athletes should have fun and have a fun environment to play a great game in. After that we encourage the athletes to work hard and treat themselves and one another with respect. If we can achieve these things, we believe we give the athletes the best opportunity to learn, grow, achieve and have a good time doing so.”

What advice would you give to anyone thinking of starting to play American football?

“Give it a go! Come along to one session to see if it’s for you. Football is a great sport with positions for people of all shapes and sizes and a great way to meet new people with similar interests. Not to mention it’s immensely fun to play, watch and coach.”

Join The South Dublin Panthers

The Panthers train every Saturday from 12:00 at Garda Rugby Club, Westmanstown. The Panthers provide all equipment needed, all you need is boots and a gum shield. Contact their Facebook page, Instragram (southdublinpanthers) or through their website www.southdublinpanthers.com for more information.

Youth League 2019: Cork Admirals

The 2019 Youth League kicks off in just over a weeks’ time, with a record 7 teams competing. We caught up with last years champions Cork Admirals to find out a bit more about their youth football programme and their preparations for the 2019 season.

How are preparations for the youth season coming along?
“Preparations are going well; the lads are learning fast and picking up the playbook.”

What do you hope to achieve this season?
“What we’d like to achieve is to get all of our youth players to experience the game of football and to increase their knowledge of the game.”

How important is youth football to your club’s overall football programme?
“The youth programme is hugely important to our overall football programme as we have had youth players progress from the youth team to the senior team and contribute straight away for the last three years. We see it as an integral part of our recruitment every year.”

What key points do you emphasise to your players?
“The key points we emphasise to our players are to play safely, support their teammates and enjoy the game.”

What advice would you give to anyone thinking of starting to play American football?
“I would tell anyone thinking of trying the sport to give it a go & to keep at it, it can take a few training sessions to find your feet & to try as many different positions at possible when starting out. It’s a great team sport.”

Join The Cork Admirals

The Admirals youth team train on Tuesday nights from 7.30pm to 9pm and Sunday from 10am to 1pm at the PBC Sports Grounds in Glasheen. The club will provide helmets & pads for youth players. Contact club president Stuart Donaldson (086 775 2302), head coach Alan Lomasney (086 220 2093) or assistant head coach Conor Linehan (087 661 9774) for more information.

Youth Football: Teams Training Details

The primary purpose of the IAFA Youth Football League is to provide an introduction to the sport and basic skill development of youth players in a fun and safe environment. The Youth League will prepare young players to compete at the senior level.

No prior American Football experience is required. Youth coaches across the league will ensure players receive the proper training to safely and effectively participate in the sport. Many of the sporting skills acquired in traditional mainstream sports of Ireland are transferable to American Football. Even if a player has no previous sporting experience, youth coaches will make sure the player is prepared before stepping onto the pitch.

Age Requirements: Eligible players must have reached 15 years of age to participate in IAFA sanctioned youth competitive games. Players who are 17 on January 1st or later of the current football season year are eligible to play in that year; even after turning 18.

Example #1: Player X turns 18 years old on January 2nd, 2019. Player X is eligible to participate in the 2019 youth football season.

Example #2: Player Y turns 18 years old on December 31st, 2018. Player Y is NOT eligible to participate in the 2019 youth football season. Player Y should participate in senior level football. Senior level’s minimum age is 18.

Antrim Jets
When?
Every Sunday, 11:00 to 13:00
Where?
Antrim Forum Leisure Centre
Equipment Provided
Helmet and Shoulder Pads
Contact Details
Gerry McCabe (Head Coach) - gerrymccabe26@hotmail.co.uk
Belfast Knights
When?
Every Sunday, 10:00 to 12:00
Where?
Shaws Bridge Sports Grounds
Equipment Provided
Helmet and Shoulder Pads
Contact Details
Belfast Knights Facebook Page
Cill Dara Crusaders
Contact the Cill Dara Crusaders Facebook Page for all details.
Cork Admirals
When?
Every Sunday from 10:00
Where?
PBC Sports Grounds
Equipment Provided
Helmet and Shoulder Pads
Contact Details
Cork Admirals Facebook Page
Dublin Rebels
Contact the Dublin Rebels Facebook Page for all details.
Louth Mavericks
When?
Every Saturday, 10:00 to 11:30
Where?
DKIT Campus Sports Grounds
Equipment Provided
Helmet and Shoulder Pads
Contact Details
Iarla Donlon (Youth Team Coach) - 353858172974
South Dublin Panthers
When?
Every Saturday from 12:00 (Starting 31 Aug)
Where?
Westmanstown RFC
Equipment Provided
Helmet and Shoulder Pads
Contact Details
South Dublin Panthers Facebook Page