Thomas to wear green
Thomas O'Connor has been named on the Republic of Ireland Under-17 soccer squad for two friendly internationals in the R.S.C. in Waterford against Switzerland on Tuesday, March 1 (7.45 p.m.) and Thursday, March 3 (12 noon) respectively.
The former New Ross Celtic player and Good Counsel student is currently making a big impression in his first season with the Southampton youth academy, and his many local fans will have an opportunity to see him in the green of Ireland given that the venue is only down the road.
Ireland are preparing for the UEFA Under-17 championships elite qualifying round when they travel to Warsaw to face the Poles, Serbia and Montenegro with the ambitions of securing a place in the finals in Azerbaijan.
O'Connor's gain to Southampton was certainly a loss to his former team-mates in Good Counsel as they missed his services when exiting from the Leinster Senior championship football and hurling races at the semi-final and quarter-final stages respectively.
O'Connor had claimed a double of All-Ireland Junior 'A' titles in the previous school year and was also a key figure on both Senior teams despite his tender years.
And while Counsel departed recently at the hands of Marist (Athlone) and Kilkenny C.B.S., they were left to reflect on what might have been if the talented all-rounder, born to Wexford parents but playing G.A.A. just over the border with Tullogher-Rosbercon, had still been available.