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Two goals from Kathryn Michaud helped Shamrocks Green beat Shamrocks White 4-0 on Sunday at St Michaels in their first club derby of the season.
Last season’s top scorer and player of the year Mikaela Howell was also on the scoresheet alongside Chloe Wheeler in what player coach Kelci Hegg described as a “solid performance”.
“Sunday was a good day for the club!” said Hegg.
“It was satisfying to see how many players and supporters from our other club teams came to watch our match. As for the game, it was nice to see our team return to form from last year.
“The addition of Briana Hovington on the back line strengthens us immensely. We also saw quality play from newcomer, Kathryn Michaud, who finished two quality crosses. Missing from last weeks squad, Chloe Wheeler and Mikaela Howell, who scored a goal each On Sunday, put pressure on the White teams back line that we were missing previously.
“Overall, it was a solid performance from the team and a much needed win to get us back on track.”
There was also a first win of the season for the reserves who recorded a 4-0 demolition of Cedar Stars Academy at at Randall’s Island.
Joey Aronovsky, Micky McGreevy, Rob Serenbetz and James Hudson were all on the scoresheet for Kevin McPhillips‘ side.
“Delighted with the clean sheet and it’s a great result,” said KMc. “But it probably should have been seven or eight in the end. We dominated the game from start to finish so that kind of performance is the benchmark going forward.”
The Over 30s came from behind to beat Manhattan Kickers in the first game of Sunday, a 2-1 victory that was hard fought and exciting.
At 1-0 down, Sean Mc Mullan pulled off a dramatic save from a Kickers penalty, setting the platform for a tense finish. Shane Moore equalized after an impressive solo effort before Dave Finlay set up Kevin Curran for the winner on 80 minutes.
“We needed a win to get back on track and we did just that despite going down 1-0 down just before the half,” said Mc Mullan.
“We picked ourselves up and went for it in the second half and scored two great goals. Very proud of the spirit we showed!”
The Legends followed the lead of their club mates with a similarly tense 2-1 victory over Barnstonworth Rovers.
Once again, Marcus Nascimento and Ger Shivnan both found the net with sensational goals. Shivnan set up the first after 15 minutes while Paddy Geraghty lined up the Roscommon man for the winner with 15 minutes to go after Barnstonworth had leveled through a penalty.
“That was a huge win in difficult conditions,” said Riordan.
“The team is starting to show some real resolve now. We could probably have been 3-0 up so it was a little disheartening to let them back into the game like we did. But we rallied and the winner was special from Ger. We still had to see it out for about ten minutes and we showed huge desire to get all three points.”
Shamrocks 1960 lost 4-1 at Brooklyn City, their third loss of the inaugural Division 3 season.
“It was another tough loss,”
“We were tied 1–1 at half-time but the lack of bodies killed us in the second half. We finished the game with two injured players on the pitch which didn’t help. Very proud of the lads – they battled to the end. We’ll regroup this week and hopefully have a full squad for Gotham Argo on Sunday.”
Last season began with a club derby between the two Shamrocks women’s teams, the first ever.
This year, we only have to wait until week two of NYMWSL Division A for the two sides to face off and with both teams having improved over the summer, it promises to be the top game of the weekend (St Michael’s – 11am).
Champions Shamrocks Green arrive into this one on the back of a 1-1 tie with Rovers while Shamrocks White started very promisingly with a 3-0 victory over Beyond.
“Our matchup with Shamrocks White always proves to be our toughest game of the season,” said Green player coach Kelci Hegg.
“We are used to competing at practice with each other and know each other’s strengths and weaknesses. They are a very good side and we will have to bring our best play to beat them.
“At the end of the day, we are still one club and there is sure to be drinks and cheers regardless of the outcome. We hope to have lots of club support and are looking forward to a great day!”
In the men’s league, the Shamrocks first team have the week off due to the involvement of Cedar Stars Academy in the US Open Cup.
The reserves game will go ahead with a 7pm kick-off at Randall’s Icahn, a repeat of last season’s State Cup final which was won by the Rocks.
“We’ve had very poor starts in the first two games so I’ll ask the players to be ready to go from the off this week,” said Kevin McPhillips.
“First clean sheet and a win is the target.”
Shamrocks 1960 will also be seeking their first win of the season when they make the trip to Coney Island for a Division 3 clash with Brooklyn City (Kaiser Park – 11am).
“We are looking to right the ship Sunday and get back on target in the league,” said coach Rob O’Neill.
“We are playing a good Brooklyn City team but I fully believe we’ll pull in our first win of the season.”
There is an Over 30s / Over 40s double header at Randall’s 74 on Sunday morning starting with Shamrocks Over 30s returning to action after a week off against perennial rivals Manhattan Kickers at 8am.
Then the Shamrocks Legends face their toughest game of the month when then take on Barnstonworth Old Boys at 10am.
The Legends have won their first two games and player coach John Riordan will welcome back several players to the fold for what should be the strongest squad of the season so far.
“Barnstonworth pretty much ended our season back in May with a very good performance,” recalled Riordan.
“They were strong that day and we’ll be under no illusions about the challenge we face this weekend. If we are more clinical in front of goal, we have a chance of getting a result.”
Another new campaign begins with much promise for the Shamrocks on Saturday evening as Paddy Geraghty takes the first team into Division 1 action with a late tie against Zum Schneider.
The 9pm kick-off at Randalls Island 70 will be one of two games getting the new CSL season underway this weekend with two brand new names gracing the top flight: Sporting SC and KidSuper Samba AC.
Some new faces will be on show with Darren Coleman and John McAleenan both enjoying a well-deserved promotion from the reserves while former Drogheda United forward Aaron Ashe should be an interesting signing for the club.
“We are excited to get started on Saturday,” said Geraghty.
“It’s a very tough division with no easy games but we’ll go into it looking to compete with every team we play. We’ve added some quality players to our squad so hopefully we can gel quickly.
“Kevin Grogan has set a tough act to follow and he’s been great behind the scenes in player recruitment. I’m looking forward to working with (new assistant coach) Zachary Gosse who has invaluable experience in this league and I’m happy to welcome back Dan Giorgi and Stuart Colbert who add the leadership that’s always needed.
“Hopefully we’ll get some good support on Saturday night and get the result we want.”
In the curtain raiser, another new gaffer will see his first action as Kevin McPhillips – assisted by player coach Rob Gaynor – looks to start on a high note against Zum.
“I was at the State Cup final victory last season,” said McPhillips.
“The team has already enjoyed a lot of success so I’m looking forward to try and build more on that.”
Meanwhile, with the newly formed Division 3 set to be very competitive, Shamrocks 1960 coach Rob O’Neill has been busy rebuilding his squad over the summer after missing out on trophies last season.
The 1960s will take to the field in the last of a unique triple header at Randalls Island 75 on Sunday (6pm), preceded by games for the Legends and the Over 30s.
Mick Mc Anea stays on as O’Neill’s right hand man while Kevin Farrell has been added to the coaching set-up.
“Getting promoted last year was massive for us,” said O’Neill. “Looking forward to a year of more competitive games and a push for silverware hopefully.”
The CSL finally has an Over 40s division after five years of building up to this weekend’s historic moment. The Legends and Over 30s take on their Greek American counterparts at 2pm and 4pm respectively.
John Riordan has added Joe Connolly as an assistant coach with Ducky Kelly remaining on board. Some new blood has been added to the squad, not least of which Shamrocks legend Mike Bishop returning to the club.
“We missed out on the play-offs last season so the aim this year is to go one better and challenge for honors,” said Riordan.
“We need more consistency and we definitely need some extra players to make sure we can get through some tough battles ahead. We’ll enjoy it, as always!”
Shamrocks legend Paddy Geraghty has taken over the reins of the men’s first team after Kevin Grogan completed a fantastic four-year stint at the helm.
After four successful years in charge of the women’s team, Geraghty steps into his new role with immediate effect after the club committee voted unanimously on Tuesday in favor of a new chapter for the Rocks.
Grogan wished Geraghty well in his new role, saying that he had no doubt the 20-year club veteran will be a big success as first team coach.
“I can’t wait to get started with the first team,” the newly installed gaffer said.
”I watched the majority of their games last season so I know how good they are. The first division is a massive challenge and there are no easy games.
“Kevin did a superb job competing at the top end of the table. Our goal is to remain there and hopefully get some luck when it gets to the end of the season. I want to thank Kevin and his assistant Stevie Doyle for all their hard work over the past few years and to the committee for the chance to coach a great group of players.”
Welcoming the development, club president Teresa Brink backed her long time friend as the ideal replacement and wished the former coach well as he looks to focus on his personal business.
“This is a hugely positive move by the club,” said Brink.
“I couldn’t think of a better choice than Paddy, who is steeped in the history of our club. We are very fortunate that he agreed to take on this prestigious position, a monumental step as we build up to our 60th anniversary celebrations in 2020.
“I especially want to thank Kevin Grogan for his ongoing dedication and passion over the last four memorable seasons. We would not be here without him and he will always be a Shamrock.”
Since taking over after the club’s promotion to CSL Division 1 in 2015, the former Manchester United man oversaw an unprecedented development of the club as a whole while also guiding the team to two play-off semi-finals and two league cup finals, winning that latter trophy in 2018.
”I decided to step down at the end of last season as head coach of the first team,” said Grogan.
“I did the job for four years and I was honored to be asked in the first place. The Shamrocks are an amazing club with an amazing history. It’s time now for me to focus more on my personal business and I also think it’s a good time for a new voice.
“Over the four seasons, we got to the play-offs twice, State Cup final once and we also won a cup. We did this in an honest way without paying any players. I’d like to thank the committee for all there support over the four years and also thank the players for their efforts.
“Big thank you to Eltin Colman, Joe Behan and Sean Keogh for there moral support particularly when I first came to the club. We had some amazing nights in particular beating the national Champions twice last season and also being the only team to beat the league champions last season.
“There were many great nights in the Courtyard Ale House after games and at holiday parties and I got the pleasure of meeting some great people.
“I wish the new coach Paddy Geraghty all the best, I’ve no doubt he will be a big success.”
The biggest weekend of the Shamrocks season is upon us with five of our teams facing hugely exciting semi-finals in both the League and League Cup.
It is also the deadline to support the Robbie Walsh Memorial Exhibition Game which will raise money to make possible the return of a youth soccer program to the Rocks.
In three weeks, the hotly anticipated game between our legends and a selection of Manchester United Legends will take place at Gaelic Park on Saturday June 22.
If you’d like to sponsor the big game by placing an ad in our souvenir journal, email NYShamrockSC@gmail.com or click here: https://nyshamrocksc.com/2019/03/27/banquet-2019/
Buy match tickets at the Courtyard Ale House or online here: https://robbiewalsh.eventbrite.com
Kent Ale House Meet & Greet Friday June 21 – https://legendsmeetgreet.eventbrite.com
Smithfield Post-Game Brunch Sunday June 23 – https://legendsbrunch.eventbrite.com
CSL DIVISION 1 PLAYOFF SEMI-FINAL
Pancyprians v Shamrocks (Belson Stadium, 8pm)
CSL DIVISION 1 RESERVES PLAYOFF SEMI-FINAL
Shamrocks Reserves v Zum Schneider Reserves (Randalls Island 74, 12pm)
CSL OVER 30s DIVISION PLAYOFF SEMI-FINAL
Between Rivers v Shamrocks Over 30s (Aviator Sports Complex, 7.30pm)
CSL OVER 30s LEAGUE CUP SEMI-FINAL
CPR Old Boys v Shamrocks Legends (Randalls Island 72, 6pm)
NYMWSL DIVISION A CUP SEMI-FINAL
Shamrocks Green v CPR Whites (East 6th St, 3pm)
For the second time in two years, the Shamrocks first team will take on CSL kingpins Pancyprians in Division 1 playoff semi-final (Belson Stadium, 8pm).
Kevin Grogan’s men finished the season strongly thanks to dramatic and deserved home wins over Lansdowne and Pancyprians in the Spring, earning a fourth seed and a final four showdown against the runaway regular season champions.
Indeed, Pancyprians have lost only once in 2019, that March 30 2-0 reversal to the Rocks which denied them the opportunity of accruing what would have been an astonishing 50 league points.
Coach Grogan has a strong squad to choose from this weekend but is realistic about the task at hand.
“We are very much underdogs but on our day we can beat anyone,” he said Friday.
“We have come a long way in four years from survival to playoffs to winning a cup and to now playoffs again. It’s been a long season but we can’t wait for Sunday. Belson Stadium will suit our style of play. We will as always work hard and try to win the game.”
On a day of big clashes, the reserves will be bidding to reach their first D1 playoff final since 2015’s promotion when they take on Zum Schneider Reserves at Randalls Island 74 with a noon kick off.
Coach Dan Meola has flown in from Texas to be reunited with his undefeated outfit who finished the regular season in pole position.
“After two weeks of rest and recovery, the lads are chomping at the bit to continue their season,” he noted.
“We are looking forward to the challenge and have no doubts about our quality and commitment. The hard work is only just beginning and the squad and I are only focused on winning. As I’ve mentioned many times, football is a game in which there are no easy opponents. Zum Schneider will be ready for the task as will we. I have every confidence in our lads and then some.”
Meanwhile, the women’s league champions Shamrocks Green, will take on CPR Whites in the Division A Cup semi-final as they aim to stay on track for a second undefeated treble in three seasons.
“We have our league cup semi final this Sunday against CPR Whites and we expect it to be our toughest game of the season. The ladies have been brilliant this year and are focused on finishing the season as strongly as we can. It’s great to be playing for trophies in June and we’ll be ready to go on Sunday.”
The Shamrocks Legends are also facing a League Cup semi-final against CPR’s Over 30s, their best ever placing in their fourth season of competition.
Having just missed out on the league playoffs, this is being seen as a very enjoyable consolation prize for John Riordan’s team.
“The lads have enjoyed the season and this will be a nice extension,” said Riordan. “CPR will be younger than us but we have played some football at times in the Spring. So although we missed out on our pre-season target, we can still be proud of a lot of what we achieved. So we’ll go into this one looking to enjoy it and see if we can cause a shock.”
The Shamrocks Over 30s are on the other of the draw, facing an Irish Derby semi-final against Manhattan Celtic Legends on Wednesday (Randalls Island 74, 9pm).
But before all that, it is Sunday’s league playoff semi-final against Between Rivers that will be occupying the minds of the coaching duo of Sean Mc Mullan and Paddy Mc Carry (Aviator Sports Complex, 7.30pm).
The Over 30s finished their regular season campaign on Thursday with a meaningless 4-1 loss to the Greeks while Shamrocks 1960 rounded out with a 2-0 win over NY Irish, both games at Randalls Island.
Lastly, the times for next Sunday’s State Cup finals have been confirmed with Shamrocks Green kicking off at Verrazano Sports Complex at 10am and the reserves taking to the stage at 2pm.
The NY Shamrocks Soccer Club is mourning the passing of founding member and past president John McCrosson this week.
John (pictured below right) passed away on Tuesday after a long illness. He was a proud veteran of the US Navy, a past treasurer of the County Tipperary Association of New York and a retired member of Local 3 IBEW.
John is survived by his devoted brothers Matthew and Thomas. He also leaves behind seven nieces and nephews as well as twelve grandnieces and nephews.
Visiting hours will be held at Riverdale-on-Hudson Funeral Home, 6110 Riverdale Ave., Bronx, NY on Sunday, April 7th, from 4-8 p.m. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Monday, April 8th at 9:45 a.m. at St. Margaret of Cortona Church, 6000 Riverdale Avenue, Bronx, New York. Interment Calverton National Cemetery.
Meanwhile, we are pleased to announce that Leo O’Connor and Osman Aydemir will line out for Shamrocks’s Legends against the Manchester United Legends XI for the Robbie Walsh Memorial Exhibition Game at Gaelic Park on Saturday June 22.
Ozzie was a teammate and good friend of Robbie Walsh in the 2000’s and currently resides in Philadelphia. He was a hard working midfielder who loved a tackle and scored more than his share of goals. He was very upset when Brazil beat Turkey in the 2002 World Cup semi final and wants to ask Kleberson a few questions about that so he can finally get closure.
Leo was also a good friend and teammate of Robbie and has been involved with the Shamrocks for almost 20 years. He started out as a forward, then played midfield, now he’s a center back. He’s aware of what comes next and is already shopping for gloves. Leo is looking forward to playing against ex-Ireland international Frank Stapleton, and says he’ll mark him out of the game. We shall see.
CSL JOHN KILBY CUP QUARTER-FINAL (LEAGUE CUP)
FC Ulqini v Shamrocks (Greenbelt Recreational Center, Staten Island, 1pm)
D’ARPINO CUP SEMI-FINAL (RESERVES STATE CUP)
Shamrocks Reserves v Pancyprians Reserves (Frank Principe Park, 1pm)
OVER 30s LEAGUE CUP QUARTER-FINALS
Manhattan Kickers Premier v Shamrocks Over 30s (Randalls Island 74, 10am)
Shamrocks Legends v Manhattan Celtic Bhoys (Randalls Island 91, 4pm)
WOMEN’S STATE CUP SEMI-FINAL
NY Magic Reserves v Shamrocks Green (East 6th St 11am)
On the field this weekend, it’s all cup action with a mix of State Cup and League Cup games keeping the Rocks busy.
Shamrocks Green have a Women’s State Cup semi-final against defending champions NY Magic Reserves at East 6th St (kick-off 11am).
“It’ll be a very tough game but we got a good look at them in our draw last weekend,” said Geraghty.
“We learned a few things so hopefully we can improve. We have played two hard games since the start of the spring season and that’ll work to our advantage. They are still probably favorites but if we play well then we have a good chance.”
The defending CSL League Cup champions will look to move on to the semi-finals when Kevin Grogan’s first team travel to Staten Island for a 1pm kick-off against FC Ulqini.
“This is such an important and difficult game for us,” said Grogan.
“But if we maintain our attitude, discipline and concentration levels from last week, we have a good chance to win because we have very good players. We need to start the game with the correct approach.”
A June final is on the line for the reserves who face a State Cup semi-final against Pancyprians, a team they beat 4-0 in the league last Saturday.
“As I’ve mentioned so many times before there are no easy games in this league,” said coach Dan Meola.
“This is even more true in knockout games such as this where anything can happen. The lads have been playing at an incredibly high level all season. Having just played Pancyprians, this must be an occasion where all 18 come ready to give everything.”
Elsewhere, there are two games in the Over 30s League Cup. The Shamrocks Over 30s take on Manhattan Kickers Premier at Randalls Island 74 at 10am looking to bounce back from their loss against Pancyprians.
“We’re looking forward to this,” said Mc Mullan. “This will be our first time trying to win a League Cup at this level.”
And the Legends have a tough task when they take on Manhattan Celtic Bhoys in the final game of the day, a 4pm kick-off at Randalls Island 91.
“We have a few injuries and a few players missing,” said player coach John Riordan.
“We will look to enjoy the game and try to see what we can get out of it. They are a level or two above us but that’s the nature of this competition. It gives us a break from the league before a very important phase of games.”
Ireland and Manchester United legend Frank Stapleton is confirmed for the Robbie Walsh Memorial Exhibition Game at Gaelic Park on June 22! The Dublin-born forward cost United £900,000 when he signed from Arsenal in 1981 and helped his new club win the FA Cup in 1983 and 1985.
You can buy match tickets here: https://robbiewalsh.eventbrite.com
And you can meet all of the Legends if you buy banquet tickets here: https://nyshamrocksc.com/2019/03/27/banquet-2019/
We are pleased to also announce that Ger Shivnan and Paul Bradshaw will line out for the Shamrocks Legends XI.
Paul has played with the Shamrocks for a decade and still turns out every Sunday for our Legends. He’s a passionate Manchester United fan and can’t wait to play against his idols. He’s the only Shamrock in history to have a career ending injury and recover from a career ending injury in the same game. His left leg is held together by a combination of paper clips, prayers, and hubba bubba. Paul is joint favorite to score the first goal on June 22nd.
Ger has been an avid Manchester United fan since birth and is looking forward to sharing the field with his heroes. He’s originally from Roscommon, a place even most Irish people have never been. His goals for the Legends this year have been instrumental in the push for the playoffs and his main job for June 22nd is to provide enough sunscreen for all the bald(ing) members of the squad. He even volunteered to administer the sunscreen for anyone who can’t reach the top of their head. But that’s Ger… the consummate team player.
CSL DIVISION 1
Shamrocks v Pancyprian Freedoms (Randalls Island 70, 8pm)
CSL DIVISION 1 – RESERVES
Shamrocks v Pancyprian Freedoms (Randalls Island 70, 6pm)
CSL METRO 2 – SOUTH
Barnstonworth Rovers v Shamrocks 1960 (Bushwick Inlet, 12pm)
CSL OVER 30 DIVISION – EAST
Shamrocks Over-30s v Pancyprians Over-30s (Randalls Island 74, 8am)
CSL OVER 39 DIVISION
Shamrocks Legends v Cozmoz (Frank Principe Park, 1pm)
NYMWSL DIVISION A
Shamrocks Green v NY Magic Reserves (St Michaels, 1pm)
Rovers v Shamrocks White (East 6th St, 9am)
It will be another busy weekend of football action for the Shamrocks. The reserves and the club as a whole bade a fond farewell to coach and committee member Dan Meola who earlier this week moved with his wife Natalie to a new chapter in Texas. Rob O’Neill will step up to a dual role alongside his 1960 responsibilities and reserves player Darren Coleman paid tribute to Meola for his stewardship of the team over the past two seasons ahead of Saturday night’s game against Pancyprians (Randalls Island 70, 6pm).
“On behalf of myself and all the players we would like to thank Dan Meola for everything he has contributed to this team in his time with us,” said Coleman. “He leaves us unbeaten with only four goals conceded this season so far, the least in any division in the Cosmo League. He will be very much missed by all of us and we wish him and his wife all the very best of luck in their new adventure! We will certainly continue the great work that Dan has put into this team going forward!”
The first team have a tough task ahead of them as they prepare to face the league’s top side on the back of two slender defeats against Doxa and Zum Schneider.
“They pay their players and have a high quality squad with players who boast professional experience,” said Coach Kevin Grogan.
“In saying that, on any given day we can compete with anyone in the league. Granted we have had a bad start to the Spring but as the weeks go on we will get better and better. April is a big month for us as we have a League Cup game and then play Hoboken and NYAC. In many ways this game is preparation for those games.”
Sunday will start with another game against Pancyprians as the Over 30s look to add to their winning start against their play-off rivals (Randalls Island 74, 8am).
“With the first game of the second half of the season out of the way, we can now get back to business, winning games in a push to win the league,” said coach Sean Mc Mullan.
Second-placed Shamrocks 1960 are looking to close a seven-point deficit behind top side Sandzak when they take on Barnstonworth Rovers in Williamsburg (Bushwick Inlet, 12pm).
“We’re looking forward to a tough match against a strong Barnstonworth side who gave us a great game in the first half of the season,” said gaffer O’Neill.
“We are looking to bring home another three points and continue our push for promotion.”
In the Over 39 Division, the Shamrocks Legends will complete the first round of games with a crucial game against two-time champions Cozmoz (Frank Principe Park, 1pm).
The position in the standings of the Legends on Sunday evening will dictate their final four games with the CSL forced to pair up teams according to their record thus far. The higher the ranking, the harder the run-in each team will face as they challenge for a top four berth and a play-off spot.
“Cozmoz have been the top team since this new division was brought in so this is a very tough way to round out Phase 1,” said player-coach John Riordan.
“But we will go all out for the win and then figure what happens next in the final four games of the season. It is not an ideal system but we are where we are. We have a strong squad but we’ll miss Antoin O Duibhir who scored twice last Sunday.”
Elsewhere, in the New York Metropolitan Women’s Soccer League, Division A leaders Shamrocks Green will play NY Magic Reserves at St Michaels with a 1pm kick-off. And Rovers will host Shamrocks White at East 6th St at 9am.
“We play the reigning league and State Cup champions this week so it’ll be a tough game as always,” said coach Paddy Geraghty.
“Hopefully last week’s game against Shamrocks White will stand to us. It was our toughest game of the season so far but we showed we don’t give up easily. If we have the same attitude and work ethic we’ll be tough to beat.”
Wes Brown will line out for the Manchester United Legends XI in the Robbie Walsh Memorial Exhibition Game at Gaelic Park on Saturday June 22.
With just under 100 days to go to the biggest event in our club’s history, Brown joins Brian McClair, Keith Gillespie, Clayton Blackmore and Kleberson for the veteran Red Devils’ first ever tour to New York City where they will take on a specially assembled Shamrocks Legends selection of players.
Brown holds five Premier League medals and two Champions League medals and he has also represented his country 23 times including appearing at the 2002 World Cup.
Two more Rocks Legends were also added today – Jim Keady and Anto McKeon will pull on the green jersey in June.
Jim Keady pictured top left and Anto McKeon pictured bottom right
Anto was an ever present left back on one of the best Shamrocks teams in the club’s history. Back in the day he was a Roberto Carlos figure who could bomb up and down the field for 90 minutes. He says he’s more of a “stay back and hope no one runs behind him” defender now. We passed that information on to Keith Gillespie who says he’ll be hovering around Anto all day.
Jim was a colossal goalkeeper who starred alongside Anto in the early 2000’s. He’s now a prominent activist in New Jersey and believes his time with the Shamrocks prepared him for a career dealing with dodgy politicians and their uncalled-for tantrums. Jim keeps himself in good shape which will be useful since his defense on June 22nd will have a combined age of 206.
Meanwhile, Spring action begins on Sunday with all three teams in action facing their Doxa counterparts.
It will be a special afternoon at the newly revamped Frank Principe Park where the Shamrocks Legends will be the first team of the current era taking to the new field. This is a huge development for the club and a return to what was formerly Maurice Park after over 25 seasons of soccer.
The 1pm game is an important one for John Riordan’s fifth-placed team as they bid to leapfrog fourth-ranked Doxa who currently hold the final play-off spot.
“We are very proud to be the first Shamrocks team to play at Frank Principe Park,” said Riordan. “As a club, finding space to play on is always our biggest challenge and the work put in by club president Teresa Brink and club secretary Kailey Walsh is hugely appreciated. We are aiming to start there with a win – it’s very important on a number of levels.”
Elsewhere, the firsts and reserves head to New Rochelle’s Skidelsky Field for a double header at Doxa (1pm and 3pm).
Kevin Grogan’s men are currently three points clear in third spot but are missing some key players for this one because of work commitments. The last time these two sides faced off, the game ended in a 3-1 victory for the Shamrocks in mid-September. Doxa are third from bottom in the Division 1 standings.
“It’s a tough week for us with so many missing due to work but that’s the nature of the beast,” said Grogan. “It’s a great opportunity for our squad to dig deep in what is a massive game for us.”
The curtain raiser will pit second placed Shamrocks Reserves against second-last Doxa Reserves.
“The lads are excited to get back to playing competitive football again,” said coach Dan Meola. “We’ve had a tournament and some friendlies during the long layoff but nothing compares to League and Cup play. Everything that happened in the first half of the season must be forgotten. We all start with a clean slate in 2019 and no opponent should be underestimated.”