#STRONGERTOGETHER

Wexford FC RT @YouthsWomen: We'd like to send our very best wishes and safe travels to two fantastic players and all-round super contibutors to the cl…

 

The U-17 Wexford Youths girls have had a very exciting season. It’s the 2nd season of the U-17 Women’s National League and the participation, excitement and interest is going from strength to strength. We started trials after Christmas and continued until the end of January where a panel of 19 girls were selected from over 30 trialists where the standard and interest were very high. 

 

The national league was split into 2 groups of 6. Phase 1 consisted of 10 games (home & away). In the first phase we finished in second place in group 2, one point behind Limerick with 7 wins, 2 losses and 1 draw. Defeats came against Limerick away, Bohemians at home and the draw was at home v Cork. We scored 20 goals in phase one and conceded 13, we went out of the cup at home v Peamount after an excellent team performance. The top 3 teams in both groups qualified for the elite phase and this goal was achieved prior to the final game.

 

Phase 2 consisted of 5 games and the top four qualify for the all-Ireland Semi-final series. Phase 2 got off to a worrying start with 2 defeats 3-0 in Cork and 4-2 home to Galway. Next up was a visit to Ferrycarrig by Limerick and the girls put in arguably their best performance of the season so far with a comprehensive 4-0 win. A road trip to the capital followed to take on reigning champs Shelbourne where a last-minute goal saw us come away with a valuable point that kept us still in the mix. The final game of the Elite Phase was vs Sligo in Ferrycarrig on Sat 21st September. A win would see us qualify for the all-Ireland semi-final, a loss or draw would mean our destiny was dependent on other results. The girls came up trumps again and played a very professional game and beat Sligo 2-0 with goals from the ever-improving Eimear Gabbett and Blessing Kingsley.

 

The semi-final beckoned with a difficult away trip to Cork who we had battled with on three occasions so far this season. We went to Cork as underdogs and put in the best and most impressive performance of the season with a 1-0 victory, Blessing Kingsley’s 18th minute goal after Eimear Gabbett’s initial shot rebounded off the crossbar. The game was full of drama, incidents and intensity but the character shown by all 19 of the squad that day will long live in the memory and with the fantastic support from parents and fans who travelled that day.

 

The final was fixed for 6 days later (Saturday 19th October) V Galway in Galway. Galway had contested the inaugural final the previous year, won the cup two weeks earlier and were now aiming for the double. We entered the contest again as underdogs but prepared well for the All-Ireland Final. The game was very tense but exciting as Wexford tried to play the ball against a very organised and technically good Galway team. After an exciting first half, it finished 0-0 at the break. Wexford Youths started the 2nd half well and went ahead with a Blessing Kingsley goal after 46 minutes after hesitation in the Galway defence. Galway went up a gear after that and scored 2 goals in the next 10 minutes. Wexford went after the game for an equaliser but couldn’t break down the excellent Galway defence who withstood the pressure and scored a third minutes from the end to leave the final score 3-1. 

 

5 of the girls have dual signed for the senior women’s team, Maeve, Blessing, Jean, Kira & Breda. We also have a number of girls who are on the Irish u-17 & u-19 Teams, Maeve, Blessing, Aimee with Seren & Jean attending trials. 

 

A great shout out to our many generous Sponsors and also the fantastic Wexford Youths assistance of Carrie, Seanie, James, Ray, Tom, Eddie, Paddy & Ronan on the PR (sorry if we forgot anyone). A huge debt of gratitude from the u-17’s must also go to Anthony Cooper. Anthony is a PR guru, video man among many of his talents and has greatly assisted us this year and in no small part is responsible for getting the u-17 girls so far as his video footage, advice, assistance and complete professionalism was something to be admired. He deserved a medal on All-Ireland final day

 

Also the women’s senior team & management have been a source of inspiration, assistance and professionalism especially Tom, Scott, Michael, Dave, Nigel, Kylie, Nicola & Rianna, too many to mention.

 

We wish to sincerely thank all the Parents, physios, Refs & lines men/women. 

 

From my personal point of view, I have some serious thank you’s. My wife Carrie, daughter Niamh & son Oisin who accompanied me on this 10-month journey and never saw me from dawn to dusk. The great assistance of Eamonn, whose advice was very inspiring, Xander & Greg. Also, Ken who’s drive, motivation & experience added a completely new dimension to our match day and training preparations.

 

Lastly I must thank the wonderful charismatic, loyal, exceptionally talented Lizzy Kent who inspired us all year through every storm and who’s leadership has taught all of us about life on and off the field, as well as how to conduct ourselves no matter what life throws at you. An absolute lady and a true friend to me who I have been privileged to share this journey with.   

 

At the start of this adventure we had one motto for this exceptional group of players & people – ‘’Make It Count’’ and that they most certainly did.    

 

Panel; Maeve, Jean, Becky, Aimee, Breda (captain), Kira, Neema, Freya, Maria, Aine, Amie, Eimear, Blessing, Seren, Laura, Lauren, Shanise, Cliodhna, Beth

 

Management /coaches;

Alan, Eamonn, Lizzy, Xander, Ken, Niamh with great help from Greg, Mike & Keith 

 

Special mention to the development players who have attended sessions and been very supportive all year. The Profile of girls & women's sport in the south east is alive & well and long may it continue.

 

Alan Browne

Manager 

U-17 Girls  

 

 

 

CURRENT STANDINGS

League of Ireland First Division

    Pld +/- Pts
8 Galway United 27 -6 26
9 Athlone Town 27 -31 18
10 Wexford FC 27 -43 11

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Women's National League

    Pld +/- Pts
1 Peamount United 21 81 56
2 Shelbourne FC 21 67 54
3 Wexford Youths Women 21 48 42

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