Shamrocks technical director Kevin Grogan, club president Teresa Brink and the chairperson of the annual Robbie Walsh Memorial Exhibition Game, Paddy Geraghty, at the Courtyard Ale House, sponsor of the Shamrocks Soccer Club. Photo credit: John Riordan

By Jay Mwamba
Special to FrontRowSoccer.com

Mark Saturday, June 22, 2019 on your calendar. That’s when a Manchester United Legends XI visits New York City for a historic fundraiser with a NY Shamrocks Legends select squad at Gaelic Park in the Bronx.

The once-in-a-lifetime event will double as the annual Robbie Walsh Memorial Exhibition Game.

In the curtain raiser, a League of Ireland Legends selection clashes with the Shamrocks Over-30s. The doubleheader will be followed by a banquet in Queens, an evening of end of season awards, and entertainment for club members and supporters.

“We are very proud to welcome former Manchester United players to take part in the Robbie Walsh Memorial Exhibition Game next summer,” Rocks president Teresa Brink said. “It should be a really historic day.”

She noted that Walsh was a big Manchester United fan so it will be a huge honor for the club to put on this event in his memory. “We are all looking forward to the day and we are very much committed to making it an occasion to remember,” added Brink.

Paddy Geraghty, who has steered the 2019 Robbie Walsh Memorial Exhibition Game Committee, paid tribute to everyone who had worked with him to make the event a possibility.

“Our current crop of Shamrocks Legends will welcome some former Legends back to pull on the jersey one more time,” he said.

“They’ll have the opportunity to play against their heroes and in some cases, join them as guest players for Manchester United. We will announce full details in the coming months including the Manchester United Legends team, ticket information, sponsorship opportunities, and special events that will run all weekend,” Geraghty said.

Geraghty thanked Colin Telford and Tony Browne at Legends XI for making the event possible; Manhattan College for the use of Gaelic Park, and the Shamrocks Committee for its hard work behind the scenes.

Kevin Grogan, the Shamrocks first team coach and technical director who began his professional career at Manchester United in the mid-1990s, also is eagerly looking forward to the historic event.

“Obviously Manchester United has a spot in my heart from my playing days,” he said. “It’s a club with an amazing history and it’s fitting they are coming over to play the NY Shamrocks who also have an amazing history. Two great clubs playing in a great city.”

WALSH LEGEND

Robbie Walsh was a former Shamrocks stalwart who, as captain, led the Rocks to back-to-back CSL League Cup victories, and, as coach, helped keep them together in hard times. Walsh, a County Kildare native, died in Queens in November 2016. He was 44.

Jay Mwanba can be reached at cmwamba@aol.com.