A 12-YEAR-OLD girl has become the youngest player ever – either male or female – to play soccer at any level for Ireland.
Alex Kavanagh, from Finglas in Dublin, made her international debut for the Irish U-15s at St George's Park – the new HQ of English football in Burton On Trent.
The midfielder took part in two friendlies, and in doing so eclipsed the record set by Chelsea player Conor Clifford, who played for the boys U-15 team when he was 13.
Under-15 is the youngest age at which players can represent their country at international level in Ireland.
"She's been playing since she was three and has been scouted by nearly every club," her father George explained.
"She's currently playing U-14 level football with Home Farm; she's only 12 and she's the only girl on the team."
Renowned for her dinky runs and intricate dribbling technique, she established a different kind of record when becoming the oldest ever girl to play on a boys team with the famed Home Farm academy.
Her flair for the game appears to run in the family, as her father, George, played in the League of Ireland for St Pats, Bray Wanderers and Thurles Town.
Her elder brother, Cian (16) was capped for Ireland's U-17 last month after travelling with the Irish squad to Macedonia to compete in the European Championships.