With just under 200 days until the first ball is kicked at SuperCupNI 2024, entrants for the highly popular Minor section have been confirmed.
The Minor section, which was first launched in 2018, is an U13 tournament which provides some of Northern Ireland’s best with a chance to take on teams from across the globe.
Among the 2024 entrants are defending champions Celtic FC, who defeated Dungannon United Youth in the final last summer, thus securing their first ever win at the competition. The Glasgow giants are joined by fellow SPL outfits Kilmarnock FC and tournament debutants Ross County from the Highlands.
They are joined by English sides Stevenage FC and Plymouth Argyle, who will hope to etch their name on the trophy come the end of July. Both teams competed in the Junior tournament last summer and have made the decision to compete in the Minor section this summer.
Three crack outfits from North America will also hope to make their mark in the Minor tournament, with IDA Bermuda and Surf Select returning, while there is a debut in the Minor section for USSSA Select.
Northern Ireland is represented by eight of the top performing National Youth League sides. 2019 winners Glentoran are among a four strong entry from Belfast which includes Linfield, Crusaders and Cliftonville.
County Armagh duo Loughgall Youth and Glenavon FC will have their sights set on impressing later on this summer and Coleraine FC and Ballymena United will no doubt receive good backing on the sidelines in front of home crowds.
SuperCupNI chairperson Victor Leonard said everyone associated with the tournament was delighted with the high calibre of teams signed up for 2024.
“When we launched the Minor section in 2018 it was our intention to provide some of the best Northern Irish teams with a chance to compete against some of the best academies from England and Scotland and from across the world.
“We were inundated with enquiries from the moment we opened our entries, and we believe this is one of the strongest line-ups we have gathered since the tournament began in 2018.
“The 2023 tournament was one of the best attended in recent years and we know that from the feedback we received from the teams last summer that they were impressed with the quality of pitches, the quality of opponents and for our visitors from outside of NI they were overwhelmed with the warm welcome they received.”
The 2024 tournament will take place from 21st to 26th July, with the traditional parade and opening ceremony kicking off proceedings on 21st July and the tournament will close with finals day on Friday 26th July.