Slovakia’s Gaelic Football team offers a family away from home

The Slovak Shamrocks, established in 2011 under the Gaelic Athletic Association, recruits locals and expats of all ages and abilities to play the unusual game.

Members of the Slovak Shamrocks celebrate on the field.Members of the Slovak Shamrocks celebrate on the field. (Source: Courtesy of the Slovak Shamrocks)

Malinovo, a village outside of Bratislava, will likely be the most culturally diverse, energetic, and Celtic municipality in Slovakia on May 26.

The Slovak Shamrocks, Bratislava’s premier Gaelic Football team, will host squads from all around Europe for a much anticipated Gaelic Football tournament. They expect a huge turnout and perhaps a few puzzled looks from curious Slovaks who come out to watch the unusual Irish sport they know nothing about.

SkryťRemove ad
Article continues after video advertisement
SkryťRemove ad
Article continues after video advertisement

What is Gaelic football?

Gaelic football has a long tradition in Ireland. The Gaelic Athletic Association, which focuses on promoting Gaelic games and pastimes, was established in 1884. A year later, the first officially recognized Gaelic football game was played under the association. The origins of the sport, however, go further back.

“Some guys in a field someday decided to muck about with a football, who knows when, sometime in the 17th century,” describes Shane Crean, Club President and head coach of the Slovak Shamrocks.

Many children in Ireland grow up playing the sport but in Slovakia, few are familiar with Ireland’s quintessential pastime.

“It’s a hybrid of a lot of different sports including soccer, Australian rules football, rugby, handball, and if you’re good at basketball that definitely transitions into our sport,” remarks Crean.

For first-time spectators, Gaelic Football looks like a thrilling yet confusing sport.

The rest of this article is premium content at Spectator.sk
Subscribe now for full access

I already have subscription - Sign in

Subscription provides you with:
  • Immediate access to all locked articles (premium content) on Spectator.sk
  • Special weekly news summary + an audio recording with a weekly news summary to listen to at your convenience (received on a weekly basis directly to your e-mail)
  • PDF version of the latest issue of our newspaper, The Slovak Spectator, emailed directly to you
  • Access to all premium content on Sme.sk and Korzar.sk

Top stories

Illustrative stock photo

It's not just whales and pandas that need saving, Slovak researchers stress

How far has science come in Slovakia in the 30 years since the end of Czechoslovakia?


8 h
Aaron King in the grounds of the Cambridge International School in Bratislava with his family, wife Loredana, son Octavian and daughters Annabelle and Alexandra.

Getting young people to think outside the box

Embracing Slovak culture and society at Cambridge International School.


30. jan
Children's Commissioner Jozef Mikloško (r), speaking during a press conference.

News digest: Slovak children anxious over poverty and bad relationships

Municipalities plan a street-light protest, general prosecutor does not plan to run in presidential election. Learn more in today's news digest.


21 h
SkryťClose ad