Ainm an Chlub: Naomh Pádraig Lifford Co Donegal
Dathanna an Chlub/Club Colours: Dubh agus Ómra / Black and Amber
Alternative Colours: Ómra agus Dubh / Amber and Black
Club Ground: Páirc MacDairmada
The Club Year 2019
While 2019 did not result in any silverware on the playing-field for Naomh Padraig Leifear, there were still a number of positives that point towards a bright future. Off the field-of-play, the Club has made major progress with our new clubhouse and playing-field nearing completion. At underage level, the number of children playing Gaelic football within the parish has increased significantly this year as a direct result of club coaches running coaching sessions in conjunction with local primary schools as part of their physical education. In addition to this, the clubs underage and adult teams were competitive throughout the year in all competitions.
Our Senior Men’s football team re-entered Division 4 of the All County League and the Junior-A Championships in 2019, having competed in Division 5 and the Junior B Championship in 2018 due to a large number of players working in mainland Europe throughout the season. Under the management of Sean McConnell, the team struggled in the early stages of the season; however they improved steadily throughout and finished the season strongly securing two victories and a draw. Despite the low number of points on the board, the team was competitive throughout, losing a number of games by a two or three point margin.
The team carried this competitiveness into the Championship were they caused an upset in Round 1 by securing a draw away from home against eventual semi-finalists Na Rossa – despite trailing by five points mid-way through the second half. Unfortunately the team failed to progress from the group stages having lost out to Carndonagh in Round 2 – in a game that was an exhibition of attacking football from both teams – and eventual Championship winners and Ulster Club finalists Buncrana in Round 3. The future is bright for this team with a number of young players impressing in their debut season.
The club undertook a number of initiatives in 2019 with a view to increasing the number of children playing Gaelic football within the parish. A number of club coaches began running coaching sessions in conjunction with local primary schools and the club also introduced GAA for Tots coaching sessions – which involved coaching children between the age of 4 and 6. This was an incredibly enjoyable experience for the children, coaches and parents involved.
On the competitive side of things, the Club competed at Under-8, Under-10 and Under-12 level in underage football, with a Naomh Padraig, Leifear and Robert Emmett’s, Castlefinn amalgamation competing at Under-14 level. Unfortunately, we were unable to enter an Under-16 team this year due to insufficient player numbers; however a small number of players from the club represented Robert Emmett’s and St. Marys, Convoy at this age group under the permission-to-play scheme – a huge thank you to both Clubs for accommodating these players and giving them competitive game time.
Our Under-8, Under-10 boys and Under-10 girls teams all had great seasons and were involved in a number of highly entertaining, competitive games throughout the season. The number of players involved in all three teams increased steadily throughout the year – as did the skill-level of the young players involved. Great credit must go their coaches Paul and Daniel for the fun-filled environment put in place for these young players to develop their skills.
At Under-12 we had much smaller playing numbers; however this group of players were extremely committed and their persistence and competitiveness throughout the season paid off with some positive results towards the end of the season. The highlight of the team’s year was undoubtedly playing on the hallowed turf of Croke Park as part of the GAA’s Under-12 activity day.
Our Under-14 amalgamated team had a superb league campaign, but they were very unfortunate to be eliminated from the Championship. A huge thank you is due to their coach Trent and to the Robert Emmett’s club for the use of their facilities for the duration of the season.
Naomh Pádraig Leifear – Senior Board
|Sean Mac Conaill
|Oifigeach Caidreamh Poiblí
|Anne Marie Kelly
|Oifigeach Coimirce Leanaí
|Oifigeach Club Sláinte
|Ball an Bhord Contae 1
|Ball an Bhord Contae 2
Minor Board Details
|Oifigeach Caidreamh Poiblí
|Anna Marie Kelly
|Regional Board Delegates
|1 Jordan Nelson
|6 Kevin McBrearty
|11 Albie Glackin
|2 Micky McBrearty
|7 Marty McHugh
|12 Martin Mongan
|3 Lorcan Glackin
|8 Paul Given
|13 James Russell
|4 Rory Brennan
|9 Michael Gallagher
|14 Seamie Breslin
|5 Cianan Doherty
|10 Paul Lynch
|15 Brian Breslin
Club review of the decade 2010-19
2010 – 2019 was a decade of ups and down for Naomh Padraig Lifford. On the field-of- play, the Club experienced great success in the early part of the decade – with the Men’s Reserve Team winning the Division 4 Reserve title in 2011 – a first adult football title for the club since its inception. 2012 was undoubtedly the highlight of the decade as the Mens’ Reserve Team retained their League Title, the Senior Mens Team secured promotion to Division 3 for the first time in the Club’s history, with the Clubs Ladie’s team also achieving promotion to Division 2. The Club also reached two Championship finals in this time – the Men’s Junior-A final in 2011 and the Men’s Junior-B final in 2012 – losing out on both occasions.
Off the field-of- play, the Club was in a poor position financially with a number of mounting debts in the early part of the decade. Great credit is due to John McDermott, Dessie McDermott (R.I.P), Brian McKinney and Danielle Devine for the trojan-work they put in in order to restore the financial stability of the club to the point where we were able to re-develop our clubhouse and playing pitch towards the end of the decade.
2018 was a particularly sad point in the clubs history as club stalwart and founder Dessie McDermott sadly passed away after a short battle with illness. Dessie was widely regarded as the heartbeat of the GAA in Lifford and his presence is still sadly missed.