Dundalk FC Head of Youth Development Martin Connolly feels that the link up with Malahide United will have nothing but a positive outcome for both parties.
“Malahide United are a fantastic football club, probably in the top three schoolboys clubs in the country and the Republic of Ireland national team have been using their facilities for the last 10 years,” he said.
“At the recent European U17 Championships, three of the Irish squad were ex-Malahide players and at the minute, we have six former Malahide players in our underage set up so the quality is there.”
Connolly also stressed that the partnership would not harm the development of good, local players.
“We’ve had full co-operation from the Dundalk Schoolboys League over this,” he said.
“We spoke with them about the Malahide initiative and they gave us their blessing with that. We wouldn’t have done it if we thought we were sending out mixed messages.
“Malahide haven’t asked us for anything,” he added. “The partnership with them ticks a box, it means they can get players from the age of four up to 16 and then advise them to come and play for Dundalk, if those players are good enough.
“That’s the key thing: they have to be good enough.
“We will play any player, local or from elsewhere, who is good enough, irrespective of where they are from.”