Westmeath Forum

Underage Development

(Oldest Posts First)

I seen a picture a few weeks ago of a Westmeath underage team training early one morning in the snow. It was great to see the level of commitment from both management and players, however I am interested to hear all of your thoughts on the current underage system with the county for the development of young players.
It is no secret that underage development is pivotal for the success of senior teams. Westmeath experienced this first hand after the '95 Minor and '99 u21 All Ireland winning teams, resulting in Leinster Final success in 2004.
Westmeath really have seemed to have taken their eye of the ball here (no pun intended) with underage. Is there much of a system currently in place for young players? There has been no success underage over the past few years. The only one of note was the minor hurling team beating Kilkenny.
Interested to hear your thoughts on this.

TractorTom4 (Australia) - Posts: 13 - 21/12/2017 18:40:53    2065800

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Replying To TractorTom4:  "I seen a picture a few weeks ago of a Westmeath underage team training early one morning in the snow. It was great to see the level of commitment from both management and players, however I am interested to hear all of your thoughts on the current underage system with the county for the development of young players.
It is no secret that underage development is pivotal for the success of senior teams. Westmeath experienced this first hand after the '95 Minor and '99 u21 All Ireland winning teams, resulting in Leinster Final success in 2004.
Westmeath really have seemed to have taken their eye of the ball here (no pun intended) with underage. Is there much of a system currently in place for young players? There has been no success underage over the past few years. The only one of note was the minor hurling team beating Kilkenny.
Interested to hear your thoughts on this."
the minor team beat Wexford
U21s beat Kilkenny

the underage system is a bit of a shambles. very few coaches volunteer to help out.
no money for anything. tops not being got for squads just to save money
young lads come in, see its a shambles and many don't bother (usually the best ones!)
hurling development money is spent on the county adult hurlers and not on the underage squads.

manfromdelmonte (UK) - Posts: 514 - 22/12/2017 07:43:42    2065834

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There are 'Development Squads' at all ages as far is I know from U13 up in both football and hurling.
My own lad was involved in U14 football and there was in the region of 60 on the squad which will be cut.
They come together for the odd group session and occasional blitz.
Not sure if there's any particular player pathway - if there is it certainly hasn't been published.
Doesn't appear to be much joined up thinking as such - each squad seem to do their own thing.
As far as I can see it is a struggle to get mentors who are not parents which is not an ideal situation.
The mentors tend to move through the age grades which is no harm once they up to the standard.
Those who do get involved do their best but financial support is always an issue.
I guess the target is to have the best 30 or so lads identified at U15/U16 but competition from soccer and rugby is an issue. Particularly from Leinster rugby and various soccer clubs who are involved in national leagues at U14, u15 etc.

BigSur (Westmeath) - Posts: 531 - 22/12/2017 12:27:04    2065868

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