Jessie Stapleton to depart Shels

Shelbourne Football Club can confirm that Jessie Stapleton will play her final game for the club on Saturday 24th of June against Linfield FC in the Avenir Sports All Island Cup at Tolka Park. (K.O 2pm)

Stapleton is widely regarded as one of the brightest young prospects in Irish football. She departs the Reds having made 71 appearances, scored  21 goals, won two League of Ireland titles and an FAI Cup.  

The 18-year-old is moving to the UK to join a Women’s Super League side, who will confirm the signing on July 1.

Since arriving at Tolka Park in 2021, Stapleton has become central to the success enjoyed under Noel King. In her first season in senior football, she was nominated for Young Player of the Year and named in the Team of the Season as the Reds won the title in the most dramatic of fashions, pipping Peamount United on the final day to win the 2021 Women’s National League title. The Reds made it to the FAI Cup final that season, but were denied the double by Wexford Youths.

The next season Stapleton was a vital part of the Reds side that followed up the 2021 title win with a remarkable League and Cup “double”. She was crowned Young Player of the Year and retained her place in the Team of the Season. Stapleton also made up for the disappointment of missing out on the FAI Cup in 2021, as she scored the opening goal and won the Player of the Match award as the Reds beat Athlone Town 2-0 in the 2022 FAI Women’s Cup Final, while also claiming the 1895 Young Player of the Year award for 2022.

Stapleton has captained the Republic of Ireland U-19s side and named U-19s Player of the Year at International level at the FAI Awards in 2022 an award for which has been nominated again for this year. 

She went on to make her senior international debut against the Philippines as a substitute in June of 2022 in Turkey. 

All at Shelbourne FC would like to express a heartfelt gratitude to Jessie for her exceptional loyalty, unmatched dedication, and invaluable service to the club. Her contribution and commitment both on and off the pitch have been massive. Jessie’s work ethic, professionalism, and leadership have been instrumental in the success we have achieved as a team. We wish Jessie all the luck in the world for the next chapter in her career.

Jessie Stapleton, Shelbourne FC said: “It’s been a pleasure to play for this incredible club. I’ve grown so much as a player winning two league titles, an FAI Cup and had the amazing experience of playing in the Champions League. Firstly I wanted to thank the staff, especially Noel King who gave me the opportunity of playing and helped develop me as a player. To Pearl Slattery and all the girls who not only helped me on the pitch but became a family to me off the pitch, I’ve learned so much from the “oldie goldies”, however it’s the memories and the laughs I’ll cherish the most. To the fans who made every game feel like a home game, from Tolka to Slovenia, thank you so much for all the support. For now, I’m onto my next challenge but I’ll be Shels biggest fan.  As the saying goes, once a Red, always a Red.”

Noel King, Head Coach, Shelbourne FC said: “Jessie has been a role model, not only for her teammates but for aspiring footballers in our community. Her professionalism, humility, and determination are qualities that we greatly admire and respect. Her positive influence has extended far beyond the pitch, it was a privilege to work with Jessie and I wish her all the best for the future.”

Pearl Slattery, captain, Shelbourne FC said: “I had the privilege of witnessing firsthand the dedication and incredible service that Jessie has given to our club. Her loyalty and commitment have been nothing short of brilliant. We are grateful for the selfless contributions Jessie made both on and off the pitch. It’s incredible for someone so young to achieve what she has, but Jessie has left an indelible mark on Shels and she should be very proud of all she achieved.” 

We’d like to encourage all Shels fans to please get down to Tolka Park on Saturday to give Jessie a great send-off and acknowledge her remarkable service to the club. Season Tickets are valid for free entry for the game, and all season tickets holders can bring U16’s for free. Tickets can be purchased here.

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