Monday 29th August 2022
DECLAN BREEN had only ever played boys’ club football until this season. He had only played on public parks until last Tuesday night.
So the call he got from the Dumbarton management with 10 minutes to go of that evening’s game is one he will never forget.
For those 10 minutes, he was part of the Sons first team, playing in a competitive cup tie.
And his time in the spotlight in the SPFL Trust Trophy tie against Rangers B is a moment that the 16-year-old will never forget.
Speaking to dumbartonfootballclub.com, Declan, who plays for the club’s under-18 team, said: “It was brilliant, even just walking out and all the fans were there cheering for Dumbarton. Being only 16, it was a brilliant experience.
“I didn’t expect to get on the pitch. I thought I was just making up the numbers, but I was really excited to get those 10 minutes on the pitch.
“It was just different to playing on a public pitch on a Saturday. The opponents were harder than usual – just stronger. I am usually playing against youngsters and it was a higher intensity, but it was really good.
“My time with the youth teams at Dumbarton is going really well. We have played our first two games in the league and won them, and I have scored in each of them.
“Before that I had only played with Calderbraes AFC (in Uddingston), who are a boys’ club team.
“I tried out for Dumbarton during the close season and it went really well. I think I had been playing boys’ club football since I was nine or ten.
“I think the team could do really well. We are just a new team and have only played a few games together, but we are looking strong and I think we will make the top five of the league.”
Declan, who is at college studying for an apprenticeship in gas heating, engineering and plumbing, added: “Hopefully over time I can play for the youth team and be involved with the first team a bit more, either in training sessions or games towards the end of the season.”
David Lavery, coach of the under-18 team, said: “Last Tuesday was a fantastic night for Declan personally to make his senior debut.
“It shows that the player pathway is already showing promising signs.”
Dumbarton Football Club