From humble beginnings St. Michael’s A.F.C. have risen to become one of the top clubs in Ireland at junior level.
There had been various teams in Tipperary Town since the early 1900’s including the famous “Wanderers” who beat Shamrock Rovers in the Irish Free State cup only to be beaten in a replay after an objection by Rovers had been upheld. Tipperary United followed and won many honours up to wartime.
St Michael’s were founded in 1947 when a group of interested people received a letter from Limerick requesting a match and to meet the challenge the club as we know it today was born.
The clubs very first honour arrived soon after in the shape of the North Munster league in 1948/49.
Many people have been involved throught the years and are readily brought to mind on an occasion such as today. It is noticeable the amount of players who have come through the schoolboy ranks and for this Saints are indebted to the years of dedication put in by Schoolboy stalwarts DD and Chrissie Cremins and Richard and Margaret O’Halloran. Also names that will always resonate in the clubs history are Peter O’Reilly, Tony Kuss, Peter Jackson, Danny O’Brien, Jimmy Hogan, Charlie Fitzgerald, Billy Butler, Mick Hanly, Mick Kinnane, Colm Whelan, Johnny Martin,John Ryan (Gux), Mick Flynn, John O’Grady Walshe, Jack Walshe, Connie Carew, Eddie Godfrey Gay Lowry, Mickey Ryan, Derry Weir, “Flash” Leonard, Eddie Jones, entire families also like the O’Dwyers, the Hogans, the Maguires, the Martins, the Cremins, the Ahearnes, the Flynns, the Tobins, the Egans, the Barrons, the Lonergans and indeed many more that could fill the entire programme.
All the details of their efforts for which the club will always be thankful are well documented in the souvenir history book which was produced in 1985.
Up until 1985 St. Michael’s home pitch was the showgrounds at the rear of St.Michael’s Church and it was with this famous pitch as a base that the club first achieved fame on the National stage by winning firstly the Munster Junior Cup in 1973 and famously the F.A.I Junior cup in 1974 and for almost thirty years held the distinction of being the last club outside of Dublin to have won it.
In 1985 the club moved the short distance to it’s present location Cooke Park which is held on a 99 year lease. This was done to facilitate the building of the nationally renowned Canon Hayes Recreation Centre whose running track and playing pitch now occupies the site of the old St Michael’s pitch.
Cooke Park since then has become one of the best pitches in Ireland and has hosted three F.A.I. Junior Cup finals, four Munster Junior Cup Finals, three F.A.I. youth Cup finals, three Munster Youth Cup finals, EUFA European U16 championship international, Lawyers World Cup and many local T.S. & D.L. finals.
To date the Club have won every honour available to it at local provincial and national level. These honours include the FA.I. Junior cup, the Munster Junior cup, the F.A.I. Youths cup, the F.A.I. U17 cup,
The M.F.A. Youth cup, the Tipperary League and cup at Junior and youth level, the AOH cup and the Cork AUL league.
In addition several St. Michael’s players have represented Ireland at international level, Marty Hogan, Michael Grace, Davy Ryan, James Walsh,Paul Breen, Paul Tobin, Aaron Moroney, Kelvin Flanagan,jimmy Carr, Chris Higgins, Gary Frewen and Kevin O’Sullivan. Ex player Shane Long is currently starring for Premiership side Hull City. On the administrative side former chairman and treasurer Tom Lewis has gone on to be chairman of the F.A.I. Junior Council and former player and honorary life president John Delaney is currently C.E.O of the Football Association of Ireland.
The Club continues to maintain a high profile countrywide and feature regularly on the pages of the local and national newspapers.
St Michael’s have been runners up in the National FAI competition four times and have won the Munster Junior cup 6 times.
The club have a hard working committee of fifteen members and have an average of seventy five players per season between first and second teams at both youth and junior level. The club also caters for hundreds of schoolboy players and ladies teams.
The club has installed a floodlit all weather facility and EUFA standard floodlighting.
The club are also proud that the facilities were used as a training base for the local special needs athletes for the Special Olympics and also to the Irish senior International team in 2010.
Roll Of Honour
Roll of Honour
North Munster League, Going & Smyth Cup 1948
Munster Junior Cup 1973 1990 1991 2001 2005 2011
FAI Junior Cup 1974
FAI Junior Runners Up 2000, 2002, 2010,2011
FAI Youths Cup 1994, 1995
Munster Youth Cup 1991, 1992, 1994,1995
Tipperary Premier League Champions 14 times
Tipperary Cup 8 times
Tipperary Youth League 12 times
Tipperary Youth Cup 8 times
Tipperary Third Division (B team) 1992
Paddy Purtill Cup 2004