Irish international Blade learns Gaelic footie

Irish international Blade John Egan learned a new sport when he joined Sheffield's St Vincent's Gaelic football club for a training session.

Friday, 30th August 2019, 16:31 pm
Updated Thursday, 5th September 2019, 11:32 am
Blade John Egan (centre) joins Sheffield's St Vincent's Gaelic football club

His participation was all part of a feature on the Irish native for Sky Sports and Premier League Productions.

After joining in the training session, scoring four points, John presented the club with a Sheffield United jersey signed by himself and other Irish blades Enda Stevens, Callum Robinson and David McGoldrick.

Egan's father was a Gaelic football legend, winning six All-Ireland titles and nine Munster championships for Kerry. John played Gaelic football himself at a young age before taking up football. This Sunday, Kerry will once again be competing for the All-Ireland football championship this Sunday when they hope to stop Dublin from winning five-in-a-row.

St. Vincent’s home pitch where the team play and train is at The University of Sheffield’s Norton Sports Park on Warminster road - the first ever permanent ground for gaelic sports in Sheffield’s history. The club have dubbed the ground ‘Páirc Uí Uinsionn’ or Vincent’s Park.

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Starting a Gaelic football team in Sheffield has been no small feat as Sheffield’s Irish population is comparatively much smaller than other nearby cities such as Manchester, Nottingham and Leeds. The club hold numerous fundraisers throughout the year, in addition to attracting sponsorship from local businesses, many of whom have Irish roots themselves such as; The Grapes, N-Prime, K Lighting Supplies, The Hillsborough Hotel, Grey Matter and Henry Boot.

A relatively young club and the most recent team to form in the Yorkshire League - St. Vincent’s (named after the historically Irish-dominated St. Vincent’s Parish around Hollis Crofts) was formed after former Wexford player Niall Murphy issued a call to start the club in late 2017. Two years in, the club has both Men’s and Women’s teams hoping for their first bit of silverware.