Red Bull’s Neymar Jr’s Five a side Soccer tournament is returning to Ireland for a third successive year.
There will be eight qualifying tournaments in each of the Men’s and Women’s tournaments taking place across the country from next week. These will determine those to compete in the National Finals which last year were held against the background of the iconic Titanic Museum in Belfast.
This is the first year there has been a separate tournament exclusively for Women, a measure of the advances that the Women’s game has made.
The pre-qualifiers will take place at Dublin City University on February 20th, UCD on February 22nd, the University of Limerick on February 26th, NUI Galway on February 27th, University College Cork on February 28th, IT Carlow on March 1st then back to Dublin in Sandymount and Ringsend on April 3rd and 4th.
The tournament is run along adapted rules where each game lasts only ten minutes and every time one team scores a goal the other team loses a player.
Last year’s tournament brought together 5,735 teams and 17,624 players from 62 countries around the world.
Ireland’s winning teams will represent the country at the International Finals in Brazil later in the year.
Image credit Ryan Byrne, Inpho Photography