Magilton makes draw for Northern Ireland School's cup
IFA Elite Performance director Jim Magilton visited the Charles Hurst Showroom on the Boucher Road this week to make the draw for the first round of the Northern Ireland School's Vauxhall Senior Cup.
Magilton will be keeping a close eye on the tournament, as he hopes to spot new local talent.
The former Northern Ireland international said: "This is a fantastic competition that plays a big part in the development of young players here in Northern Ireland. I'm sure this year's competition will be a major success and hopefully we will see a few of these young lads playing for Northern Ireland in the future."
This season's tournament has 65 teams from all over Northern Ireland. The first round will be played in early October, with the final set for the Ballymena Showgrounds on Apri 30. Last season, St Columbus College won the prestigious trophy, beating Belfast school St Malachy's 2-0 in the final.
St Columbus start their defence of the trophy with a home game against Newtownhamilton, while St Malachy's College welcome Lumen Christi to their ground on the Antrim Road.
The tie of the round sees Newry High School host Our Lady's and St Patrick's from Knock. Both Newry and Our Lady's will be hoping to be in Ballymena on April 30, but whoever goes out in the first round will still have the chance to win some silverware. All teams who are knocked out at the first stage are entered into the Plate tournament.
NISFA Development officer Conor Marlin said: “It’s great to have a new season about to kick-off. We seed the competition so it means some of the bigger football schools avoid each, though with that said we have some really exciting games to look forward to, including some derbies.
“All hope for the season is not lost if you lose the first round tie, as you then go into the Plate competition. It’s important we provide as many opportunities as possible to represent your school on the football field with all competitions culminating in a showpiece Finals Day at Ballymena Showgrounds on April 30, 2014.”
Cheryl Stibbs, Vauxhall's Sponsorship Marketing manager, added: "We are delighted to be putting our support behind the Vauxhall Schools Cup again this year. Supporting grassroots football is vital for the game in Northern Ireland and we hope that some of the children taking part in the competition this year will go on the represent their country in years to come."
Omagh HS V St Patrick’s (Ballymena)
Larne High v Corpus Christi, St Columbs College v Newtownhamilton, St Colm’s (Twinbrook) v Craigavon, Christian Brothers GS (Omagh) v St Pius X (Magherafelt), Newry HS V O.L. & St Patrick’s, St Colmcille’s (Crossgar) v Lagan College, St Mary’s (Magherafelt) v Glengormley, De La Salle (Belfast) v Saintfield, Colaiste Feirste v Laurelhill, Monkstown v Foyle College, New-Bridge Integrated v St Marys CBGS, Newtownbreda v Shimna, Wellington College v St Joseph’s (L’Derry), St Patricks GS (Downpatrick) v Lisnagarvey, Strabane Academy v Portora, Fort Hill v St Colman’s (Ballynahinch), Ballyclare HS V Ashfield, St Brigid’s (L’Derry) v St Brigid’s (Armagh), Ballymena Academy v St Louis (Ballymena), St Killian’s (Larne) v Fivemiletown, Ballyclare Sec v St Patrick’s (Belfast), St Joseph’s College (Belfast) v Banbridge HS, St Patrick’s & St Brigid’s Claudy v Holy Cross Strabane, Grosvenor v Newtownabbey, City of Armagh v Edmund Rice College, St Malachys College v Lumen Christi, St Patrick’s Grammar (Armagh) v Model, Bangor Academy v Omagh HS OR St Patrick’s (Ballymena), De La Salle (Downpatrick) v Rathmore, RBAI V Dromore, Movilla v St Patrick’s (Lisburn), St Michael’s (Enniskillen) v Lismore
Ties to be played before October 9.