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Milk Cup

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Title: Milk Cup  
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Subject: Northern Ireland national under-19 football team, Chile national under-17 football team, Josh Magennis, 2010 Milk Cup, 2009 Milk Cup
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Milk Cup

Milk Cup
Milk Cup Logo
Founded 1995 — Elite
1983 — Premier
1985 — Junior
Region Northern Ireland
Number of teams 6 — Elite
24 — Premier
24 — Junior
Television broadcasters BBC
2013 Milk Cup

The Northern Ireland Youth Soccer Tournament, commonly known as the Milk Cup or the Dale Farm Milk Cup for sponsorship reasons, is an international youth football tournament held annually in Northern Ireland. The cup matches are mainly played in the North Coast area of Northern Ireland, with matches taking place in the towns of Portrush, Portstewart, Castlerock, Limavady, Coleraine, Ballymoney, Ballymena and Broughshane.

In October 2013, the Milk Cup organising committee and leader sponsors Dairy Council released a joint statement stating that the long-term sponsors Dairy Council would be withdrawing sponsorship.[1] The official Facebook page for the competition revealed that the competition(s) would no longer be known as the Milk Cup.

In February 2014, the organisers announced that competition would be sponsored by Belfast-based company Dale Farm and that the competition would be known as the Dale Farm Milk Cup.[2]

From 2016 it will be known as the Super Cup NI.[3]


The Milk Cup began in 1983 with sixteen teams participating at an Under 16 (Premier) level. Bertie Peacock, one of the most famous football players from the region.

The competition was extended in 1985 when an extra age group, the Under 14 (Junior) section was introduced and again the first champions were from Scotland, as Rangers F.C. won the Milk Cup at that age level. The competition at both levels has grown in size and stature over the years, with teams increasingly travelling from all continents to compete. The Under 19 (Elite) section was introduced in 1995 with the Welsh finishing the tournament as winners. Traditionally, the finals are played at the Coleraine Showgrounds on the Friday evening.

Many current international footballers have taken part in the Milk Cup, players such as Charlie Davies, Jonathan Spector, Paul Scholes, and Wayne Rooney have all competed at some level in the Milk Cup. In the 2002 FIFA World Cup there were 30 Milk Cup veterans playing.

To celebrate the competition's silver jubilee, a friendly match took place between Northern Ireland and four-time junior section winners Everton F.C. at the Coleraine Showgrounds on 14 July 2007. Everton won the tie 2–0.

One of the key parts to the Milk Cup is the inclusion of six representative teams from each county of Northern Ireland - Antrim, Armagh, Down, Fermanagh, LondonDerry and Tyrone. This system allows young players from across the province to compete against some of the best in the world at their age group.


Year Elite (U-19) Premier (U-16) Junior (U-14)
Winner Runner-up Winner Runner-up Winner Runner-up
1983 Founded in 1995 Motherwell Coleraine Founded in 1985
1984 Rangers Motherwell
1985 Newcastle United Coleraine Rangers Craigavon
1986 Dundee United Newcastle United Craigavon United Crewe Alexandra
1987 Crewe Alexandra Liverpool Dundee United Crewe Alexandra
1988 Liverpool Motherwell Home Farm Dundee United
1989 Newcastle United Manchester United Dungannon Swifts Dublin & District Schoolboys
1990 Tottenham Hotspur Crewe Alexandra Crewe Alexandra Hibernian
1991 Manchester United Heart of Midlothian Norwich City Dundee United
1992 Rangers Nottingham Forest Norwich City Heart of Midlothian
1993 Cherry Orchard Rangers  Slovakia Heart of Midlothian
1994 Hearts  Russia Middlesbrough Manchester United
1995  Wales  Russia Feyenoord Everton Norwich City
1996  Turkey Tottenham Hotspur Blackburn Rovers West Ham United Motherwell
1997  Northern Ireland Middlesbrough Manchester United West Ham United Middlesbrough
1998  Turkey  Chile West Ham United Crewe Alexandra West Ham United
1999 Vitória Crewe Alexandra Manchester United Manchester City Everton
2000  Chile  Turkey Manchester City Charlton Athletic Manchester City
2001  Mexico  Scotland  Paraguay Manchester United Norwich City Heart of Midlothian
2002  Paraguay  Denmark Leeds United Panathinaikos Everton Botafogo
2003  Paraguay  Brazil Manchester United Preston North End Racing Club Heart of Midlothian
2004  Turkey  Brazil Heart of Midlothian Belvedere Maccabi Haifa Everton
2005 USA  Northern Ireland Barcelona Chelsea Lyngby CSKA Moscow
2006  Paraguay USA Spartak Moscow Rapid Vienna Swindon Town Crumlin United
2007  Israel  Northern Ireland Fluminense Manchester United Guadalajara St. Kevin's
2008  Northern Ireland  Chile Manchester United South Coast Bayern Everton Wolverhampton Wanderers
2009  Northern Ireland  Denmark Manchester United Sheffield United Everton Watford
2010 USA  Northern Ireland Étoile Lusitana Bolton Wanderers Chelsea Cruz Azul
2011  Denmark  Northern Ireland Aspire Manchester United Everton Cruz Azul
2012  Mexico  Denmark Desportivo Brasil Newcastle United Brentford Everton
2013  Mexico  Northern Ireland Manchester United County Tyrone Everton County Antrim
2014  Northern Ireland  Canada Manchester United Vendée Corinthians County Antrim
2015 Not held Right to Dream Southampton County Antrim Club América

Notable players

Media coverage

Since 2005 the Milk Cup has been broadcast on BBC Northern Ireland, taking over from Ulster Television. This has led to much more media coverage as matches from Finals Night are broadcast on BBC Two Northern Ireland. Usually these are from the Premier and Elite section featuring highlights of the junior game which happens earlier in the afternoon. Some Milk Cup matches are broadcast on BBC Two Northern Ireland, made available to the rest of the UK via BBCi and BBC SPORT Website and some other Milk Cup matches are broadcast online at The coverage is usually hosted by Stephen Watson, with commentary by BBC Commentators such as Jackie Fullerton, Michael McNamee, Paul Gilmour, Joel Taggart, Grant Cameron and punditry by John O'Neill, Gerry Armstrong and Oran Kearney over recent years.

External links

  • Official Milk Cup website
  • BBC Sport NI at the Milk Cup - BBC Northern Ireland Milk Cup site
  • BBC Blast NI at the Milk Cup

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^
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