A new 27 acre site, for a football centre of excellence in the midlands, has been purchased between Tubber and Clara, County Offaly. The land purchase is now complete at Woodfield (outside Clara) for the first Midlands football centre of excellence. There are certainly exciting times ahead as a design team will commence the planning application process as soon as possible. The Executive Committee will also well make representations to all the political figures from the area seeking their support for this ambitious project for the midlands. And they are looking for a main sponsor!
The Midlands Schoolboy/girls League facility will give both players and coaches from Offaly, Laois, Westmeath, Roscommon and East Galway the chance for the best possible foundation for their footballing education both on and off the pitch. At present there are close to 5,500 players in this area. They will have access to multiple pitches (grass and artificial), dressing rooms, classrooms, a gym and video analysis rooms across a multi-year development.
The Hon. Secretary of the Midlands Schoolboy/girls League, Derek Collins said: “It will hopefully allow us to see more and more players from the area go on to play at the top level of football, both home and abroad, and will cement our place as one of the top regions in the country for both player and coach development allowing each and everyone to maximise their full potential.”
Regarding the current financial climate in Ireland Mr Collins said: “The league will not be imposing any extra financial burden on our clubs and the league will form a fundraising committee. Through that committee, and grants from government bodies and a main sponsor, we hope to develop the land over several years in stages. At present the league is paying between €40,000 to €45,000 per season in the hire of grounds to train and play matches for all our ETP squads.”
Derek told Will Faulkner on ‘Midlands Today’, Midlands 103, that they are setting up a fundraising committee this weekend in order to find a main sponsor.