WITH TEN ENGLISH CLUBS and one Scottish club represented in Sean McCaffrey's Irish Under 18 squad to face their Dutch counterparts - it is a measure of success that St Patrick's Athletic have two representatives in the final squad make up. Kick off is at 17:30 tonight in Richmond Park.
The players Noel Haverty and Derek Foran have made strong and steady progress at Richmond Park. They have moved up through the club's youth ranks and last season combined playing for the Under 16's with Paul Osam's Under 21 squad.
This season is the next in their steady progression to become top professional footballers. Both players have been rewarded by Johnny McDonnell with places in the Saint's first team squad. They will continue to play with our successful Under 17 Premier side.
The success of Haverty and Foran is an inspiration to the club's younger players. The Inchicore lads are taking their first encouraging steps in what seems to be a new trend for Irish footballers, that of players developing at home and then moving if the chance presents itself when they are mature enough to cope with the new pressures and challenges of living abroad.
The success of another former Saint, Kevin Doyle and a host of other Irish players doing well in The Premiership, The Championship and the SPL after first honing their craft playing in the Eircom League is testament to that.
We wish Noel and Derek as well as the rest of the Irish team the best of luck in tonight's encounter.