“I joined my first soccer team when I was five years old. I was the only one at home with any interest in the sport – though my family are getting into it now because of me! I’ve gotten to a high level now, and I hope to go even further.
I started off with our local club in Laois, Crettyard United, but my first League of Ireland club was Carlow-Kilkenny. When I turned 17, I went to Dublin to try out for Bohemians U-17 team. That was when things really kicked off. I made the team, and I improved so much that season. Although I joined as a winger, I was moved to striker within ten games, and I excelled in that position. In my first year, I won Player of the Year and became the team’s top scorer.
I’ve now progressed to the Bohemians U-19 team, and over the summer I had my debut for the senior team. It was incredible to play with the Bohs first team against Shelbourne in the Leinster Senior Cup Semi-Final. We won 3-4 after I scored the final goal of the match. Looking forward, I would love to play professional in England – and I think it’s definitely a possibility for me.
Last year, I was proud to be selected for the Ireland Schools U-18 team. It was the biggest honour of my football career so far to play in the green jersey. We competed against England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland in the Centenary Shield. I captained the Ireland Schools team against England, and it was very special to me to be leading the team.
Following the competition, I was honoured to be named U-18 Schools International Player of the Year at the 33rd FAI International Awards ceremony in the Mansion House. It was a really special event.
“There were incredible Irish international players being presented with awards on the same night, and to be recognised at the same event and see Ireland senior players clapping for me was an amazing experience.”
I’m studying Sport Science and Health at DCU, and everything we learn is so relevant to playing sport. It’s interesting to learn about the science behind exercise and the most effective ways to train. There are a lot of different routes you can go down with this course, from physiotherapy to sports psychology, so it opens up many career possibilities in an area I’m passionate about.
My twin sister and I both started college this year, so I wanted to help contribute at home as much as possible. I worked over the summer to save up, and I was able to get accommodation on campus through DCU Sport at a time when a lot of other first years are still struggling to find somewhere to live in Dublin.
“I feel very lucky to have been chosen for the Joseph Anthony Lynch Memorial Scholarship. The scholarship will help us pay for my accommodation and having the extra financial support will save me from eating beans on toast! As an athlete, I take my diet very seriously because I need to keep fuelled for training and matches.”
Through DCU Sport, I have access to workshops in sports psychology and nutrition, and I’m learning a lot from the DCU coaches. They have such a deep knowledge of the game, and we have a really good club here. I’ve only played two games with DCU so far, but I’m looking forward to the rest of the season. Everyone at DCU has been so welcoming, and I’m very grateful to the supporters of this scholarship. It’s amazing for them to help out a student in this way.”