Dundalk FC is delighted to announce the launch of a new Pre-Academy for boys born in 2009.

The Pre-Academy will give young players a platform to develop their skills whilst they are still playing with their respective Schoolboys League clubs and offer them the best opportunity to advance to U14 National League level at Dundalk FC or further afield.

Trials for the Dundalk FC Pre-Academy get underway at 4pm on Sunday, March 13th at Oriel Park. Further trials will also take place on Sunday, March 20th and Sunday, March 27th.

“With this initiative, we will strive to deliver a clear football programme with a broad curriculum to develop future players for Dundalk FC,” said Dundalk FC academy director Derek Boyle.

“We will do this by offering our most promising young players increased levels of support on their football and education journeys. This is in line with the FAI strategic plan as an intended aim to improve the academy structure in the League of Ireland.

“We will also work to establish key links with the local Schoolboys and Schoolgirls League clubs in the community to make the programme a success,” he added.

“All sessions will be led by UEFA-qualified Dundalk FC coaches and all players who take part in our Pre-Academy will still be free to play with their respective schoolboys’ league clubs.”

The Dundalk FC Pre-Academy will initially focus on developing boys born in 2009 but plans are in place to expand it beyond that age group in the near future.

Thomas McShane has been named as the Pre-Academy coaching coordinator and Boyle said he was the perfect candidate for the role.

“Thomas is the head coach of our U14 academy team and he has a wealth of experience and knowledge of that age group,” said Boyle.

“Over the next year, we hope to have an active Pre-Academy for boys, ranging from 10-13 years of age,” said McShane. “These age groups will serve to feed into our current academy structure which begins at U14 level.

“In the longer term, we hope the Pre-Academy will grow even more with boys U8, boys U9 and girls added to the programme.”

Registration for the Dundalk FC Pre-Academy trials is mandatory. To book your place on the trial, email academy@dundalkfc.com and include the following details.

  • Player’s name:
  • Player’s date of birth:
  • Player’s position:
  • Player’s Schoolboys League club: