Robbie Keane Academy Cup launched
THE THIRD annual Robbie Keane Academy Cup, which attracts top European clubs to Crumlin, has launched.
Scheduled to take place on April 29 to May 1, the tournament is run by Crumlin United with the aim of exposing their players to a European-standard of football.
Youth teams from Juventus, Manchester City, Benfica, Everton and Aston Villa will take to Pearse Park in Crumlin for the tournament alongside a DDSL selection and Crumlin Under-12s.
The inaugural tournament was held to great success in 2018, with the hopes of inspiring young people to follow in the footsteps of Republic of Ireland record goalscorer Robbie Keane.
Keane, from Glenshane in Tallaght, played for Fettercairn YFC before making the move to Crumlin United when he was 10 – where he got scouted by Wolverhampton Wanderers at the age of 15.
“It’s a very good tournament and it’s something we all at the club really look forward to,” said Martin Loughran of Crumlin United.
“When you see the quality of the clubs coming over to take part in the Robbie Keane Academy Cup and play football here in Crumlin, it really proves its worth running.
“A lot of the ground work was put in before we ran the first one because we were trying to build the profile of the tournament, so it has a lot more pull now and it’s fantastic for the club.”
The Manguard Plus Robbie Keane Academy Cup, which is totally self-funded and costs in the region of €30,000 to run, has been coordinated by Crumlin United’s Chris Kelly with the backing of the club.
Keane attended the launch in Crumlin recently, where he spoke to the club’s under-12s players ahead of the tournament.
The eight-team tournament is split into two groups, with Crumlin paired off with Juventus, Burnley and Aston Villa in Group A and the DDSL side set to face Manchester City, Benfica and Everton in Group B.
Games will take place on the Friday and Saturday before the final play-off matches are played on Sunday, May 1.