St Kevin’s Boys And The New Breed Of Talent

St Kevin’s Boys’ green patch of field is located in the urban settlement of Whitehall and has been home to many of Ireland’s best stars.

Among the club’s most illustrious former players are: Liam Brady, Damien Duff, Ian Harte, and more recently Robbie Brady and Jeff Hendrick, who starred for the Republic of Ireland in last year’s Euros campaign.

Before they were household names, they once were bright-eyed, young talents in the dazzling orange kits of Kevin’s Boys.

Not all of the graduates made a career for themselves in England, some stayed closer to home; plying their trade in the League of Ireland.

Shamrock Rovers star Ronan Finn started off at St Kevin’s as well as former Wexford Youths player Andy Mulligan, who now plays his football in Australia.

As their annual Easter tournament approaches, the locals will come in droves to watch the young stars of the future take to the field against teams like Barcelona, West Bromwich Albion, and Deportivo La Coruna.

The tournament not only showcases the talent to the locals however, it is also the perfect opportunity for scouts to witness how the players cope in a competitive atmosphere.

Many players for Kevin’s have made a move after starring for the Whitehall club – some of which are being pegged as future internationals.

1) Jack Byrne, Wigan Athletic:

Byrne made a move to Manchester City at 15 years- old, and played in the youth set-up for several years. Having failed to make an appearance for the senior team, Byrne went out on loan to Dutch side Cambuur before making a summer move to Championship side Blackburn Rovers.

On the international front, he has starred for the u-21s meriting an early call up by Martin O’Neill to train with the Euro 2016 squad.

After a frustrating start for his new club Blackburn, Byrne secured a deadline day move to Wigan Athletic who are in the command of former Manchester United reserve manager, Warren Joyce.

2) Dara O’Shea, West Bromwich Albion:

Dara O’Shea is one of the Irish stars learning his trade in the Premier League, having signed for West Brom last year.

The 17 year old has impressed in his tenure at the Hawthorns so far, making appearances for both the under-18’s and under-21’s.

His impressive performances have not gone unnoticed either, with O’Shea earning a professional contract, keeping him at the club for the years to come.

3) Graham Kelly, Sheffield Utd (Stalybridge Celtic, loan):

Graham Kelly has had a more frustrating move across the water than O’Shea and Byrne, but has an equally promising future.

The left-back made the move to Sheffield United from St Kevin’s Boys and has made one appearance for the first team, in the EFL Cup.

Having failed to secure first team football, Kelly moved out to the Vanarama National League North on loan.

On the international front, Kelly has competed at the UEFA Under-19 Championship, 2016 and in Under-19 Friendlies.

4) Eoghan Stokes, Leeds United:

Strikers have been in short supply as of later, but Stokes could be the future leader from the front for the Republic of Ireland.

Having moved to the sleeping English giants, Stokes has become a fan favourite at under-21 level and calls for a first team appearances were knocking last season.

Good form in front of goal earned stokes an added one-year contract, but this worryingly has yet to be renewed again, meaning a move from Elland Road could be on the cards.

5) Alex O’Hanlon, St Patrick’s Athletic:

St. Kevin's Boys

Closer to home, St Pat’s new-boy O’Hanlon was once one of St Kevin’s brightest stars, before earning a move over to Liverpool.

While at the Merseyside giants, O’Hanlon impressed at underage level, but failed to break into the first team, despite making appearances on the bench under then manager Brendan Rodgers.

Before making the move home, the highly sought-after and versatile player was on the radar of a number of English clubs, including Nottingham Forest, Sheffield Wednesday and Huddersfield Town following his departure from Anfield.

Enda Coll

Comments

comments

Recommended Articles