RECOGNITION: Lara O’Brien received the Monica Harrington Memorial Cup from Don Harrington for her efforts behind the scenes at Killarney Athletic Football Club.


By Sean Moriarty

Local woman Lara O’Brien has been named as this year’s recipient of the ‘Monica Harrington Memorial Cup’ for her outstanding contribution to Killarney Athletic Football Club.

The award, which is now in its fifth year, is made to a female club member who has made the greatest contribution to club over the past 12 months.

It was presented by Don Harrington, a former Killarney Garda and club founder, at the clubhouse on Tuesday evening.

Lara spent seven years in Australia where she trained as a soccer coach with Mosman United and was also a member of the Killarney club’s first U16 ladies team before she moved down under.

Since her return, Lara has coached the U13 boys with Brian Bowler to league glory. Lara also solely coached the U14 B boys and eight to 10-year-old girls with Martin Crowley and will continue in these roles for the coming season.

“I don’t do this for the awards, I do it because they are such a lovely bunch of kids,” she told the Killarney Advertiser.

“I am delighted and overwhelmed.”

Lara is married to Shane McSweeney and has four children, David, Lauren, Millie and Erin, who all play with the blues.

Her uncle Kieran O’Brien was also a founding member of the club and her grandfather Charlie O’Brien gave the club the use of his lands as playing pitches during the club’s formative years.