By Dave Donnelly
The underage League of Ireland has been boosted by the announcement of EA Sports as title sponsor across all men’s and women’s leagues from Under-14 to Under-19 level.
EA Sports have sponsored the senior men’s league cup since 2009 and have extended their support for grassroots soccer to the growing underage leagues.
The Women’s National League has added an under-19 age group this season, building on the success of the under-17 league since its introduction in 2017.
Part of the EA Sports sponsorship will all league and cup finals, with commentary, across the various age groups screened live on the league’s streaming platform, LOITV, for the first time.
2020 saw all-Dublin finals at U-17 and U-19 men’s, with Bohemians beating Shamrock Rovers in the former and St Patrick’s Athletic besting Bohs in the latter.
In the women’s U-17 league, Shamrock Rovers reached the final in their first year but were narrowly beaten by Cork City.
League of Ireland director Mark Scanlon said: “This partnership will help strengthen the development of the game and further support the great work that League of Ireland clubs perform with young players as they progress through the game, and hopefully into first team football with their clubs.”
Caption: Kian Hogan of Athlone Town, Chloe McCarthy of DLR Waves, Danny McGrath of Bohs, Cian Kelly of
St Patrick’s Athletic, Niamh O’Keeffe of Waterford and Colum Doherty of Finn Harps at the EA Sports
PHOTO CREDIT – Underage League Launch at the FAI National Training Centre in Abbotstown.
Picture: Harry Murphy/Sportsfile