Team Ireland - Transplant & Dialysis Sports

Team Ireland Soccer Win BRONZE!

Transplant Sport Ireland’s Soccer Team played their first British Transplant Games this weekend, at the Cryfield Pavilion, University of Warwick, Coventry on Saturday July 29th. Team Ireland was picked in Group B which included Wales, Leeds, and a London combined Team. The tournament consisted of 8 teams, with 2 groups of 4, and the top 2 teams qualifying for the semi- finals.

Team Ireland began the tournament against Wales in the first game of Group B. The starting line-up was Goalie Alan Gleeson (Kidney / Kerry), John Brennan (Heart / Louth), Mick O’Shea (Heart / Cork)

Captain, Paul Hackett (Kidney / Tipperary), Darragh Stapleton (Liver / Dublin) and Ciaran Tiernan

(Liver / Cavan). The game started at a frantic pace with lots of nervous energy, and the Welsh team pinned the Irish back and only for 2 super saves from Gleeson kept the score goalless. Then as Ireland found their feet, Stapleton pounced on a Welsh defensive error and scored what proved to be the only goal of game 1, and a strong start to the group for Ireland.

Game 2 saw Ireland take on a very strong Leeds side that had already defeated London Combined 1-0 in their opening game. Starting Game 2 saw Goalie Alan Gleeson, Paul Browne (Bone Marrow / Wexford), John Brennan (Heart, Louth), Riyadh Abdelkader (Dublin / Kidney & currently on Dialysis), Darragh Stapleton (Liver / Dublin) and Patrick O’Driscoll (Liver / Cork). Team Ireland began on the strong foot and O’Driscoll was unlucky not to open the scoring after a period of early dominance. It was to end with both goalies keeping a clean sheet, resulting in a 0-0 draw, meaning Ireland and Leeds were joint top of Group B on 4 points after 2 games.

The Final game of Group B, saw Ireland pitted against bottom of the table London Combined Team. The Irish team consisted of Goalie Alan Gleeson, Paul Browne (Bone Marrow / Wexford), Paschal Kavanagh (Kidney /Tipperary), Andrew Gallagher (Kidney / Louth) and Ciaran Tiernan (Liver / Cavan). Again, Team Ireland pressed from the whistle and Gallagher opened the scoring with a long-range rocket. Ireland continued relentlessly and shortly after Tiernan who had worked tirelessly upfront doubled the Irish advantage. Team Ireland changed around the team and substitute Lar Brennan (Lungs / Wexford) forced 2 incredible saves from the London goalie keeping the final score 2-0 to Ireland. This result left Ireland top of Group B and facing the runners up of Group A (Oxford) in the semi-final.

The Irish Team for the semi-final was Goalie Alan Gleeson, John Brennan (Heart, Louth), Paul Browne (Bone Marrow / Wexford, Darragh Stapleton (Liver / Dublin), Andrew Gallagher (Kidney / Louth and Patrick O’Driscoll (Liver / Cork). The game started with Oxford taking the initiative, but as Ireland started to get a grip on the game Oxford broke down and Irish attack on in the resulting counter attacked open the scoring via a deflection. Ireland pressed for the remained of the game creating chance after chance but unfortunately the Oxford keeper stood tall and kept the Irish attack at bay, resulting in a 1-0 win for Oxford.

On to the 3/4 place playoff and Team Ireland again faced Leeds (who lost the other semi final to Nottingham 2-0). Here team Ireland lined up with Goalie Alan Gleeson, Mick O’Shea (Cpt, Hear/Cork), Paschal Kavanagh (Kidney, Tipperary), Billy O’Toole (Lungs / Mayo), James Harney (Heart / Tipperary) and Jayson Flynn (Liver / Dublin). This was an extra special moment for Jayson and the entire Team as it was Jayson Flynn coincidentally was transplanted one year to the day. Leeds pressured from the off, but strong defence from Harney, O’Shea and Kavanagh along with Gleeson in goals kept the Leeds attack out. Then as momentum changed Flynn and O’Toole connected excellently up front to force a strong save from the Leeds goalkeeper. As time went on, Ireland began to get stronger and with the introduction of substitutes Owen Crudge (Kidney / Cork), Stapleton and Hackett started to cause Leeds more and more problems. Ireland pressed and pressed but Leeds held out for a 0-0 draw and a penalty shootout would decide Bronze…

Here Team Ireland won the toss and elected to go second. During the penalty shoot-out Gleeson saved 3 of Leeds penalties while O’Driscoll, Browne, Stapelton scored resulting in Ireland claiming the Bronze medal. It was a hard fought medal but an occasion every member of the 16 man team will cherish.

Team Ireland would like to thank Coach Matt Dunne (CK United) and Tom Donavan (Assistant) for all the hard work and effort inputted into this team over the previous months. Team Ireland Soccer will be back training again in the coming weeks and if interested in joining the team, they are always looking for new members, and you can contact via social media or our website or

Transplant Sport Ireland had huge success at the Games winning 16 Gold medals, 9 Silver medals and 6 Bronze medals but it’s not about the medals. Team Ireland has one shared purpose – to showcase the success of organ donation and transplantation whilst offering inspiration to those who are newly transplanted or newly diagnosed with organ failure.

#havetheconversation #organdonation #giftoflife #transplantsportireland

Team Ireland Soccer Squad:

Cavan: Ciaran Tiernan (Liver recipient)

CORK: Owen Crudge (Kidney recipient), Patrick O'Driscoll (Liver recipient) Mick O'Shea (Captain, Heart recipient)

DUBLIN: Riyadh Abdelakder (Kidney recipient currently on dialysis), Jayson Flynn (Liver recipient), Darragh Stapleton (Liver recipient)

KERRY: Alan Gleeson (goalie, Kidney recipient))

LOUTH: John Brennan (Heart recipient) & Andrew Gallagher (Kidney recipient)

MAYO: Billy O Toole (Double Lung recipient, Mayo)

TIPPERARY: Paul Hackett (Kidney recipient), James Harney (Heart), Paschal Kavanagh (Kidney recipient)

WEXFORD: Lar Brennan (Double Lung recipient) Paul Browne (Bone Marrow recipient)

Jul 21
Aug 01
British Transplant Games
Kilcullen Community Centre
TEAM IRELAND to compete in .....TRANSPLANT SPORT FOOTBALL TOURNAMENT 2024 MARCH 24 @ 10:00 AM - 3:00 PM Transplant Sport are pleased to announce that the annual the Transplant Sport football tournament 2024 is to be held at Ocean Park Arena. The
In Lisbon, Portugal rom Sunday 21st July 2024 to Sunday 28th July 2024 bringing together: The European Transplant & Dialysis Sports Championships and The European Heart & Lung Transplant Championships.
Team Ireland - Transplant & Dialysis Sports

Team Ireland - Transplant & Dialysis Sports have one simple request to everyone - to please consider carrying an Organ Donor Card and

Have the conversation – Say YES to Organ Donation.

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