Belfast Telegraph

County Antrim without their Manchester United whizzkid Galbraith, who will take on Northern Ireland at SuperCupNI

A look at Antrim's Junior and Premier squads ahead of next week's tournament

By Keith Bailie

Manchester United young gun Ethan Galbraith will play at this year's SuperCupNI, but not for his native County Antrim.

The Glengormley teen will play for his new club United at Coleraine Showgrounds in an U18 challenge match against Northern Ireland on Saturday (kick-off 5pm).

The midfielder, who captains Northern Ireland U17s, had hoped to play for Andy Hunter's County Antrim side at the prestigious youth competition.

Antrim chairman Stefan Seaton explained: "Ethan not only is a talented footballer, he also has an excellent attitude and a fantastic work rate and we're all delighted for him.

"He has played for Antrim in the former Milk Cup on more than one occasion and he was keen to play for us this year again, but he will play for Manchester United U18s in the challenge match against Northern Ireland on Saturday instead.

"Ethan has really earned his place at Old Trafford and his move is great for Antrim because it shows our young players what is possible if you work hard and have the right attitude.

"Here, we can show our boys pictures of Steve Davis in an Antrim shirt - a lad from Cullybackey who went on to lead his country at a major championships and captain a Premier League team in a cup final.

"Guys like Davis, or even like Liam Boyce who came through the Irish League, who have made a career for themselves, show boys from here can make an impact if given a chance."

Another Premier League star has also pitched in to help the Antrim cause.

Seaton said: "Chris Brunt played in the Milk Cup for Antrim and he still stays in touch with us. People think Premier League footballers are selfish creatures, but Brunty has provided us with footballs, training gear and tracksuits."

County Antrim's Junior side, managed by experienced coach and scout Seaton, will start their campaign on Monday against Southampton at Riada in Ballymoney before facing Down at Ballymena Showgrounds on Tuesday. On Wednesday, they play American side Strikers in Portrush.

Antrim's Premier side, managed by former Linfield man Andy Hunter, won the competition two years ago. This year they will kick-off on Monday at Ballymena Showgrounds against Newcastle United. On Tuesday they will play Club America at Riada before playing Tyrone at the same venue on Wednesday.

The tournament begins with the traditional parade of teams in Coleraine on Sunday.

COUNTY ANTRIM JUNIOR SQUAD: Rian Lennon, Ruadhan McKenna, Craig Simpson, Darren Hyland, Trai Hume, Dylan Snodden, Liam Mitchell, Leighton Jamerson, Ben Wylie, Carl Johnston, Gerard Storey, Barry Baggley, Peter McKeirnan, David Faulkner, Adam Donnelly, Carson Elliott, Chris McKee, Lee Rea

COUNTY ANTRIM PREMIER SQUAD: Decky Dunne, Paul Mc Laughlin, Thomas McComb, Taylor Lewis, Caomhan McGuinness, Kofi Balmer, Aaron Donnelly, Paddy Burns, Caoimhin McConnell, Paul McAdorey, Sean Wallace, Matthew Shannon, Lee O'Brien, Jack O'Mahony, Nathan Best, Ryan Strain, Paul O Neill, Josh McGreevy

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