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'Skills are key': Dave

THOMAS DAVIS are hoping to turn the Kiltipper Road into the Hudson River.

Paul Hudson has delighted all in the club with his progress. His Dublin fan club is growing all the while.

And Davis U16 mentor Dave Nugent states that the future of Dublin football is smelling of sweet perfume.

"Just take the U16 Division 1 League. The standard there is excellent. There is little between the teams," judges Dave.

"Many of the fellas are on Dublin development squads. The players in the league have terrific ability.

"They are left and right-footed and can use both hands. It's good to have those skills so early. That shows the level of coaching that is in the game now, and it augurs well for the future."

The recent All-Ireland success of Pat Gilroy and Jim Gavin also brings a favourable echo, according to Dave.

"All the kids want to play for Dublin. They aspire to be like the present players who are wearing the jersey," he adds.

"As mentors, we love to see the kids go to the Dublin matches. That's where they learn from looking at the likes of the Brogans, et cetera.

"And they can bring those lessons into their own game. They can only improve from trying to emulate the Dublin lads and also by playing in such a high level of football.

"More times than not, there's only a couple of points between any of the teams in Division 1 of the U16 League. It all comes down to the performance on the day. Games can change so quickly."

The advent of all-weather surfaces is also pointing to a better tomorrow. Teams are able to train away, no matter what the climate brings.

"In the bad spell there recently, we were able to play matches on all-weather pitches when other games were being called off. It's a big asset for a club to have an astro pitch," says Dave.