Leinster U13 Development Day review: "We are aiming to challenge different aspects of player development"

LAST Sunday, October 7, over 350 girls descended on St Laurence’s GAA, Co. Kildare, to take part in the Leinster U13 Development Day.

Despite breezy conditions, the girls enjoyed a day of football, making new friends and showcasing their skills.

The emphasis of the LGFA U13 Development Programme is on developing every player. It is an inclusive programme prioritising the involvement of all players. The event took a new format for 2018 in order to maximise participation and ensure the development of the player was at the centre of the day’s activities.

Teams were split into three groups and took part in three different game formats throughout the day to challenge different aspects of player development.

As well as having the opportunity to play a 15-a-side match against another county, teams also participated in 11-a-side conditioned games, and mixed small-sided games.

The conditioned games were designed to promote the effects of movements, space and other players; challenging players to recognise the purpose of the skill through its effect on the game or situations. This included a period of the game where teams could hand or kick pass only or had to make a minimum number of passes before scoring.

Wicklow Ladies star Jackie Kinch was on hand to lead the small-sided games station with utmost passion and enthusiasm.

After organising the players into mixed teams, with girls from different counties, she took them through a fun warm-up to get to know each other before setting off to play a number of quick small-sided games.

As well as making new friends, the small-sided games ensured every girl had equal opportunity to play, and also challenged their ability to take responsibility for making their own decisions on the pitch.

Leinster Games Development Officer Suzi Doyle said of the event: “On reviewing the Development Academy programme, we were acutely aware that whilst it was an inclusive programme to provide development opportunity to as many players within a county as possible, the ‘finale’ was a traditional blitz, which whilst non-competitive, focused on the team rather than players as individuals.

“By changing the format, we are aiming to challenge different aspects of player development as well as increasing the opportunities for all players to participate on the day and making the day an enjoyable occasion for the girls.”

St Laurence’s will now play host to the Leinster LGFA U15 Development Day on Saturday 20 October.

Counties Participating in Leinster U13 Development Day

Carlow (2 teams)

Kildare (4 teams)

Laois (1 team)

Longford (3 teams)

Louth (4 teams)

Meath (3 teams)



Sign up to our email newsletter


Partners & Supporters





See all LGFAClubs