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Seamus Kelly

Kerry, Ireland



6ft 1 inches




19th march 2006



Country of Residence:


Country of birth:






Leaving certificate results:

English - H1

Maths - H4

History - H1

Spanish - H1

Business - H1

Economics - H1

Japanese - H1

*awaiting ncaa gpa


- International commerce

- Business

- economics

- Spanish

- Japanese







Fall 24'



ABout me

My soccer journey began at age 5 when I joined the local Killarney Celtic football club. My career began with a run of defeats, and I quickly learnt the pain of losing. However, at the u10 level, we began to gain traction as a team, becoming the strongest side in the county. My first taste of competitive football came in the form of the prestigious Barnado Cup, a regional tournament in which the strongest sides in Munster faced off. Despite coming second, the last-minute goal I scored to send my team into the finals, where family and acolytes flooded the pitch would become a cherished memory. It was during this period that I joined an academy set-up, receiving UEFA A-level coaching at Total Football Academy. I was taught both fundamental and advanced aspects of the game as the academy competed in the Oakham Cup and I played against other elite academies such as European Elite Soccer.  

In 2015, I left for St Brendan’s Park FC due to ill treatment. I was prohibited from playing most of that season as I had left Killarney Celtic mid-season. The following season I bounced back, racking up 10 goals and 21 assists whilst losing almost every game. Despite these setbacks, I was picked up by the Emerging Talent Programme of Kerry in 2015, where I started and played every minute at centre midfield, playing against other counties. This enabled me to impress Cork City coaches during the training camps I had the opportunity to attend that year. That summer was spent playing soccer in Tokyo for Soleil FC. On the hot, sandy pitches of Japan, I played in the Tokyo Premier League and was humbled by the sheer determination and talent of these players. Back in Ireland, I joined Killorglin AFC and played for the u12 side where I scored 11 goals and 17 assists in 28 games in a league-winning season. This earnt a spot for the age group up where I scored 3 goals and 7 assists in 5 games. The following 2 months of summer break were spent playing soccer for Trust United in the Tokyo Premier and for the local secondary school. My consistency was rewarded in 2017 with the opportunity to go to Milan with Coerver Coaching where I received tuition from AC Milan underage coaches. This was an eye-opening experience where I observed the standards expected of elite footballers. 

In 2018, I was one of three u12 players that were called up to play in the renowned u13 Galway Cup-a humbling experience in which most games resulted in defeats. Whilst this campaign discouraged my peers, it motivated me, and late 2018 saw yet another twist in the tale as I signed for Cork City u13s, becoming the first player of my generation to sign for a professional academy. Thrown into the deep end of League of Ireland football, I hit the ground running with 2 goals on my debut. I scored a further 3 goals and racked up 8 assists in the inaugural u13 LOI season as we topped the first phase and made it to the Semi-Finals of the National Cup. I found myself leaving school early and studying during the 3-hour commute to training and during lunch breaks. Regardless, maintained the strongest academic record of my year group. In parallel to club soccer, I helped the Intermediate School Killorglin to its first Munster and National Title, with 12 goals and 25 assists throughout the campaign.  

The pandemic didn’t dampen my progress-my mother, a qualified aerobic instructor and personal trainer made sure my days started early and ended late with running, lifting weights and ball-work incorporated. Despite this, owing to the pandemic I could not travel to Cork for training and be released after the 2018 season. I took this setback into my stride as I re-entered amateur football in 2019. I was poached by a renewed Killarney Celtic set-up and within a year, I had won the Kerry league and Summer Cup with the u15s and similarly with the u16s. I seized every opportunity that came my way and became the youngest debutant for the Senior A side, one of the best amateur teams in the country as an u15 player. Training and playing against talented adults forced me to learn how to use my body and catalysed my mental development. My last involvement at this level was with the u17s team as we beat Southend United of Waterford to earn a spot in the semi-finals of the SFAI National Cup, with 2 assists in a 3-2 come-back victory. I experienced a string of knocks as I adjusted to the physical aspects of senior football. These experiences led to an obsessive interest in injury prevention, strength training and overall physiology, vowing that I would do everything possible to prevent future injuries. 


The 2022 League of Ireland would become the first uninterrupted season of soccer after the COVID pandemic. In late 2021, I successfully trialled for the Kerry FC u17 team as an u16 player, and so began my second season of soccer at this level. Under the coaching of ex-professional Brendan Moloney, I transformed both physically and mentally throughout the season, to the point where I regularly trained with the u19 team throughout the latter half of the season, all whilst still being an u16 player. During this period, I experienced enumerable setbacks but my determination and pure love for the game preserved. 


I currently play starting centre midfielder for Kerry U17s. 

What makes you different from all other student-athletes?

In short, Karate. Alongside soccer, I began the Japanese martial art as a 5-year-old and was quickly labelled a prodigy. Karate harnessed my athletic attributes and competitive nature with strict moral codes of character, discipline and morality. Naturally, I have emulated key aspects of karate into my game, and lifestyle. The isometric nature of many karate stances, as well as the twitch-like combative nature of the art, developed my overall athleticism. The fighting aspect developed a brave, quick-thinking mind and a body to follow. This has contributed massively to my timing of tackle.  

Karate has also taught me to seek perfection in character, with attitude, spirit and discipline completing the triumvirate. I left the karate world in 2017 to focus on soccer having done it all-racking up an impressive 58 national titles, 8 United Kingdom, 4 European and 7 World Championship Titles. I have competed in Italy, Holland, England, Portugal and Ireland. 

 I attended 15 different dojos across 4 different countries, most notably having the honour of training with the grandmasters in Tokyo, and spreading this knowledge in Ireland.  6 years of consistent effort has allowed me to grade up to 2nd Dan Black Belt, which grants me the right to open up my dojo and have students. I am the youngest foreigner to graduate with a Japan Karate Association-certified black belt. The core principles of karate negate the need for any ego, as I continue my journey to perfection of character. The art has allowed me to have greater physical capabilities to aid my soccer career. 


Punctuality-I have not missed a single day of school through illness-I and have missed a total of 5 days of education through primary and secondary school. Similarly, I have yet to miss a training or match for Kerry FC. 

Academic Prowess: I have been academically talented from a young age, with a STen Score of 10 in Maths, Spelling and English Reading maintained throughout my primary school years. These results also helped as I got up 2 hours before school started to hone my Japanese and English. 

My Junior Certificate equivalent GPA was (unweighted) 4.0. 

Adaptability: as a player who has played for 9 different clubs and numerous age groups across different countries, I have experience integrating into foreign teams’ cultures. I have a flexible play style that can be adjusted to fit your system of play, whilst bringing my characteristics such as quick thinking, vision and grit, to the table. 

what are your short and long term goals?

Short-term goals:

- Earn a call-up to an Irish Training Camp. Break into the u19 Kerry team.  

- Further, improve and share my knowledge of strength and conditioning, body systems and nutrition to improve the overall performance of me, and my teammates. 

- Maximise my academic performance to ensure that I achieve the prerequisite grades guaranteeing my participation at the highest levels of collegiate soccer.  

Long-term goals:  

-Walk away from university with a degree applicable in the world of business, having developed my skillset, worldview and character through sport and academics. 

-Establish a broad network of coaches, teammates and peers that can propel me into a professional career, be it in soccer or in the world of business.  

Why do you want to compete in college?

I believe I need to leave the comfort of my home and put myself in a position where I can grow academically, as a footballer, and as a man. What better place to exact my goals than in the ‘land of opportunity!'

I would also love to immerse myself in a diverse yet familial environment that is your collegiate team, to supplement my development and broaden my horizons. 

The sheer quantity and quality of resources yyour college provides for the players will ensure that I will have everything needed to push on in my soccer career.

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