Killala Soccer Club in Co. Mayo
Killala Soccer Club was formed in 1975 by local youths Seamus McDonnell, Killybrone, Gerry Bourke, Meelick and Peter McDonnell, Killala, in an effort to run 5-a-side and 7-a-side matches in the area. A group of about twenty members kept the Club going in the early years, playing matches in whatever fields they could get from local farmers.
They moved to Asahi Pitch in 1978, and from 1982 to 1991 had to play their matches in a field they rented at Ross. They moved back to Asahi Park in 1991 where they played until 2004, when the club eventually moved to its purpose built facility at Courthouse St, Killala. The club won the Division 3 title in 1979/80 and Division 2 title in 1984/85.
In 1986, it was decided to start a youth development policy at the club to try and improve the success rate on the field. The introduction of schoolboy’s football brought great interest in the club and after a few years they were able to field the full compliment of schoolboys and youth teams. League titles were won at U-13, U-14, U-16 and U-18 levels and in 1992 the U-17 team reached the last sixteen of the FAI Cup.
Since 1991, the Club has had players on the Mayo Kennedy Cup (U-14) panel and, in all, have had twenty-nine players playing for county representative teams in recent years. FAI senior staff coaches have been coming to Killala for several years and every year they do a week long clinic assisted by the Club’s own coaches and cater for 90 plus players throughout the week.
To help with the cost of running the club and for future development of the club, they started a lotto draw some years ago, which has been quite successful, covering the costs of running the club and putting some funds towards the future development of the club.
The club always aimed to own it’s own pitch and in 1996 - their 21st anniversary - the money raised was used to buy five acres of land at Courthouse Street. A development plan was drawn up and planning permission was sought from Mayo County Council for two pitches, clubhouse and dressing rooms, car park and storage shed. In 2000, the club was awarded a £50,000 grant from the Sports Council towards the development at Courthouse Street. The new pitch and clubhouse was officially opened on Sunday July 25th, 2004, by Brian Kerr, Manager of the ROI Senior International Team.
Going from strength to strength the club applied for funding for a floodlight all-weather pitch and through local fundraising assisted by funding from the Dept of Sports & Tourism, this new facility opened just before Christmas 2005 and is currently enjoyed by hundreds of footballers.
Killala Soccer Club has enjoyed much progress and success off the field and, although not always matched on the field of play, the club has nevertheless accumulated quite a number of titles since its formation.