MACROOM FC have got the ball rolling on their plans to have an all-weather pitch in the club’s Murrayfield base come the summer of 2023.
This facility would be of great benefit to the local community for years to come, and something that the club and the town of Macroom can really look forward to.
Darragh Deasy, the PRO of Macroom FC, outlines the main benefits of an all-weather pitch.
“It is still at the early planning stages, but the plan is to go ahead with it and, hopefully, have it up and running by 2023,” Deasy said.
“You would have games played when they are scheduled to be played; you see an awful lot of cancellations and stuff in the winter.
“In the last 10-15 years, the club, size-wise, has gone through the roof. We have 23 teams and over 500 playing members, the vast majority of whom would be schoolgirls and schoolboys.
“So, it has gone huge and, I suppose, the thinking is that you are going to have the numbers to justify an astro. An awful lot of our players come from, obviously, the town of Macroom, but also the surrounding parishes.
Going west from Lakewood, we would be the biggest club in that hinterland.
“Everyone will get an opportunity to use this, if it gets built. It is there for the community and it is there for current and future generations.
“You would be looking at guys who would play five-a-side on a Monday night.
“It is going to be a great thing. Plus, another aspect of it, then, if you are looking long-term, you could see the bypass coming on stream.
“Part of the thinking is Macroom is becoming a more and more attractive place to be living, with the commuting, the bypass, you have all the other sports here.
“There is a great community spirit in the town and a full-size astro, literally inside the middle of the town, would be a fantastic thing for the community and for everyone,” Deasy said.
“At the moment, the planning process is ongoing. In tandem with that, then, fundraising will be a huge thing for it.
“Again, we would just be hoping that the local community and the surrounding parishes, parents, and businesses, come and support with the fundraising events.
“People coming to training and dropping off their kids, I think that they can see that the club is being run well and there are good people involved in it, really interested in improving themselves.
“So, hopefully, that will be seen by parents and supporters of the club, who, in turn, can help us with the fundraising, when the time comes.”
There is plenty of excitement with the different teams in Macroom getting back out onto the training pitches once again.
Deasy described the mood around the Mid Cork-based side, as the teams return to collective training, with players and coaches alike getting back to what they enjoy doing.
“Everyone was dying for it, not just the players, but also the coaches because it is a social thing for everyone, not just the sport,” Deasy said. “We all missed that.
Murrayfield has been full belt there the last few weeks; every night of the week there has been a couple of teams training.
“So, it has gone very well and I think you can see the enthusiasm of the kids, once they get on the field. They are all delighted to be back.
“The coaches are delighted to be back. Parents are delighted to have their kids back, as well, because it is important to them.
“Hopefully, if things continue with the numbers and if things stay good, the possibility of playing soccer into the summer, this year, would be a great thing for the kids.
“For the adults, also, they are going back, as well, with the Munster Senior League season, in some shape or form.
“But it is just exciting for everyone to be back,” Deasy said. “It has created a great buzz in the community and we are all delighted with it.”
Macroom also have made the move into the Munster Senior League (MSL), with the adult first team set to be competing in the Second Division for the forthcoming campaign.
Macroom had commenced life in the MSL Second Division last term, before it was curtailed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
In their most recent competitive outing, before the league stoppage, they record a 2-1 victory on the road against Carrigtwohill. Keith Holden and Dylan Twomey were the Macroom scorers on that October day.
Another impressive outing for Macroom was a home victory over Youghal United. Once the action gets back, Macroom will be keen to showcase their stuff in what will, hopefully, be a fully completed campaign this time around.
The club at schoolboy level has seen a number of its younger players progress on to League Of Ireland football, including Cormac Buckley, currently with the Cobh Ramblers U19s.
Through the use of an all-weather facility, Macroom will hope to provide a good platform, and a player pathway, to get to the highest level possible.
There are many exciting times ahead for Macroom FC, both in the short- and long-term.
More in this section