DDSL SFAI New Balance Kennedy Cup Cap Presentation

The DDSL gathered in Abbotstown on Thursday evening to recognise the achievements of both their 2017 and 2018 SFAI New Balance Kennedy Cup winning squads.

As is tradition, the DDSL Kennedy Cup squads receive a blue cap, and both FAI President Donal Conway and former DDSL Kennedy Cup player and newly appointed Republic of Ireland U21 Manager Stephen Kenny, were on hand to make the presentations.

Most of the 40 players involved over the two years were present, and DDSL Chairman Paddy Dempsey took the opportunity to remind them of the significance of receiving the cap.

Addressing the fledgling footballers he said: “As DDSL legend Fran Ray would always say, you may very well pick up several green caps in your time playing football, which we hope you do, but you will only ever get one blue cap – you should be very proud of it.”

Republic of Ireland U21 Manager Stephen Kenny then spoke to the players, and he shared his own experience of playing in the 1984 SFAI Kennedy Cup, where he faced Roy Keane who captained the Cork side which went on to win it.

Speaking to the players Kenny said: “I was not lucky enough to win the competition when I played, you should all be very proud of what you have achieved.
“As young people it is important you focus, not just on your football, but also on your school work and on becoming good people as you mature into adulthood.”

Several of the players there on the night from both the 2017 and 2018 squads have already gone on to represent the Republic of Ireland at U15 and U16 levels, and Kenny said he hopes to see some of them in the coming years across the ages as he takes up his new role within the FAI.

DDSL SFAI New Balance Kennedy Cup Squad 2017: Kian Moore, Darragh Lynch, Leigh Kavanagh, Bosun Lawal, Evan Caffrey, Roland Banya, Val Adeedokun, Darragh Reilly, Nathan Anyanwu, William Chelaru, Jeff Nwodo, Gavin O’Brien, Andrew Moran, Ben McCormack, Len O’Sullivan, Morgan Rice, Adam Wells, Ross Fay, Conon Noonan, Cian Kavanagh.

DDSL SFAI New Balance Kennedy Cup Squad 2018: Lee Morris, Craig King, Cian Kelly, Harvey Nugent, Sean Grehan, Belguy Manzambi, Callum Warren, Jamie Mullins, Evan Ferguson, Mathew Brennan, Ben Quinn, Thomas Lonergan, Glory Nzinga, Ben Curtis, Sean Bannon, Kyle Murphy, Alex O’Brien, John Finnerty, Jamie Kelly, Jack Ross.