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Meet the Beach Boys ... the football team without a pitch who have to train on the sand

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SPORTING: The footballers of Laytown United gather to train on their beach where  players as young as 10 hone basic skills such as ball control and learn to work together,

SPORTING: The footballers of Laytown United gather to train on their beach where players as young as 10 hone basic skills such as ball control and learn to work together,

SPORTING: The footballers of Laytown United gather to train on their beach where players as young as 10 hone basic skills such as ball control and learn to work together,

THESE young footballers have been left without a pitch to train on, so they have resorted to honing their skills on the beach.

The members of Laytown United Schoolboy Football Club in Co Meath have no grass or AstroTurf available, so they are making the best of a bad situation by training on the sand.

However, if the tide is in the players are forced to move.

The club, which has 150 children registered, with numbers growing, is begging the council to find suitable facilities.

Boss Tony O'Doherty said: "If the water is too close, we actually lose the footballs. They go into the water and they can't be retrieved, particularly on the windy days.

"There are cars going up and down by us all the time," he told the Herald.

"We have to stop to let people go by at times."

Children from 10-years-old upwards train on the beach, but it is far from easy.

"People have been very kind," Mr O'Doherty said.

There are seven teams playing as part of the club, with age groups ranging from eight up to 15. There are also 64 children in the academy under the age of seven, with more starting in August.

"We borrow a pitch from one of our local neighbours in East Meath United – they kindly loan us a small one," Mr O'Doherty said.

GREENS

For some of the older boys who need a full-sized pitch, Laytown United Senior Football Club lend them theirs whenever possible.

In addition, they train on one of the greens in the Inse housing estate.

"The smaller ones go down there to train and as they get a little bit older they go onto the beach to train, as well as the local school hall," said Mr O'Doherty.

FDILLON@HERALD.IE


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