Dundalk FC will wear a one-off, charity jersey in the SSE Airtricity League game against Shelbourne at Oriel Park on April 22nd to raise awareness and funds for Motor Neurone Disease.
Official club sponsors BetRegal have kindly agreed to donate their front of jersey space to Watch Your Back MND, an organisation set up by Dundalk-man Roy Taylor, who was diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease (MND) in 2018.
Each unique, player’s jersey will be auctioned ahead of the game with the funds going to Research Motor Neurone, a charitable organisation for MND research. A bucket collection will also take place during the night.
Roy, who represented Ireland with his band Jump The Gun at the 1988 Eurovision Song Contest, has refused to succumb to the debilitating condition that currently has no cure or effective treatment.
“When I was told I had MND, I decided there were two things I could do; roll up in a ball or roll up my sleeves and try to do something about it. The latter is exactly what I decided to do,” said the father of four.
Since then, the Taylor family have been avid campaigners and fundraisers for MND. In October 2020, Roy released a song with his son Terence that went to number one in the Irish iTunes charts. A follow-up single with his daughter Ella followed last November.
The Taylor family, along with fellow Louth-man and ‘MND warrior’ Sean Woods, also lent their support to former RTÉ journalist Charlie Bird ahead of his recent ‘Climb With Charlie’ which, to date, has raised over €2 million for the Irish Motor Neurone Disease Association and mental health charity Pieta. To coincide with Charlie’s event, a local ‘Climb the Saddle of Slieve Foy’ fundraiser raised over €20k.
“As a club, we believe that we have a responsibility to use our influence and reach to highlight and promote what is happening in our town and local community,” said Dundalk FC chief operating officer Martin Connolly.
“Roy and Sean and their families have shown great courage over the past four years and we are calling on all of our supporters to get behind this fundraiser and help the Taylor family – and the many other families around the country – in their battle against Motor Neurone Disease.
“We would like to thank our main sponsors at BetRegal for initiating this brilliant initiative and we would also like to thank the FAI for their support. We hope this campaign will provide Watch Your Back MND with a platform to raise awareness and much-needed funding of this devastating disease.“
“Ever since we began our partnership with Dundalk FC, BetRegal has wanted to immerse ourselves in the community and be more than just a ‘main sponsor,” said BetRegal head of marketing and affiliates Aly Lalani.
“When we decided that we would like to donate our front-of-shirt sponsorship, we sat down with Dundalk FC and our friends at The Unit to get some direction on where we could make a difference.
“We soon learned about Watch Your Back MND and the work that Roy, Sean and their respective families carry out to raise funds and awareness for such a worthy cause.
“It is a privilege for BetRegal to spearhead this initiative and hand over our front of shirt sponsorship to Watch Your Back MND and fund the unique jerseys that the players will wear against Shelbourne in a bid to raise funds and awareness for Motor Neurone Disease.”
For more information on Watch Your Back MND, visit the website here.
Watch Your Back MND Dundalk FC Jersey Auction
- There are a total of 24 jerseys available, 21 outfield jerseys, two goalkeeper jerseys and an exclusive shirt with ‘O’Donnell 6’ printed on the back. The full list is below.
- 1: Shepperd, 2: Macari, 3: Gartland, 4: Boyle, 5: Connolly, 6: Bone, 7: Kelly, 8: Benson, 9: Hoban, 10: Sloggett, 11: Martin, 14: Cherrie, 15: Leahy, 16: Bradley, 17: Ward, 19: Williams, 20: Adams, 21: Doyle, 23: Mountney, 24: Animasahun, 25: Hanratty, 28: O’Kane, 29: McMillan, 6: O’Donnell.
- The bidding for each jersey starts at €100.
- Bids must be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org along with a contact name, number and the jersey you would like to bid on.
- Bidding closes at 9.30pm on Friday, April 22nd.