Preceding her Cork City career 23-year-old Sarah McKevitt played with both Peamount United and the Ireland underage set up, but has recently gone a step further in the green category to add biodiversity, growing her own food and nurturing nature to her assemblage.
In tandem with “A Common Goal” initiative launched by SSE Airtricity, Irish domestic league clubs are making designs toward a more environmentally sustainable football community, with player’s at the helm of the promotion.
One such role model is that of Maynooth graduate McKevitt who jumped at the chance to get involved.
“It was actually something I am quite interested in, in general so when I was asked to do it I was delighted” she says.
“Even just little things that we could all do would make such a difference.”
“I would never have thought of just things like collecting rainwater to water the plants or feeding the birds. Now I’ve gone obsessed with feeding the birds and I’m always doing it now!”
“The little things make the habit and once you keep doing something, it’s about keeping those habits up.”
Currently sitting 7th in the Women’s National League The Rebels know all too well the importance of that rhetoric and although wealth of wisdom may not be on their side the qualified primary school teacher describes the daring budding outfit as an aim completed in that she is “playing every weekend and getting a chance to progress” but that they “kind of slip a little bit sometimes.”
“There’s a lot of youth in the team” says the Thurles native.
“I’m 23 and one of the older players, which is different for me. When I was at Peamount, I was one of the youngest.”
“Obviously we haven’t had the best season so far, but results will come. We had our win there two weeks ago against Treaty so we were delighted with that one. It’s good for the team morale.”
Team of the Week | Series 17
— Women's National League (@LoiWomen) August 5, 2021
Another move which has brought comradery to her new dressing room has included City’s push for Turner’s Cross to be home to both its men’s and women’s teams.
“It’s one of the best pitches in the country, so we are very lucky to be playing there every weekend” she says.
“Even to be noticed is great, it’s just about getting the support in now.”
“It’s great to be playing there, but can we get the support from the, from the fans as well while we’re there? I think that’s something that we’ll be pushing for now once things open back up fully, it’s can we get more and more people in is the question.”
How's this for a strike from new signing Sarah McKevitt! 👀 🚀
— Cork City FC Women (@CorkCityFCWomen) February 11, 2021
The loyalty of her native county at her back without fail, the Tipperary woman has played Gaelic football for her county over the years only to make the ultimate decision to stick to just the one code in 2021 after she “was made to choose between the two.”
“Soccer has always been my number one so when it came down to it I went with that. I had already committed to Cork City, and I am happy with my decision.”
Where such an ultimatum came from? “The football side, the Tipp side” she says.
“They’re probably correct though. I think the day of the dual player is gone.”
“I know there are few players in the league that are doing it… so it is doable, but at the same time [Declan Carr]’s points were like, how can you pay 90 minutes on a Saturday and go out on Sunday and play another 60?”
“I don’t think it’s fair on the player to have to choose and it’s not fair on the players around them really either, so it’s nearly easier to nip it in the bud early and not have that problem.”
Having done just that last year’s FAI cup finalists are looking to replicate their performance in the competition this time around, with McKevitt and Paul Farrell’s group fully invested in the magic of the affair.
“In my opinion, anything can happen in a cup” she says.
“It’s only three games, like we’re already into the quarter finals and you have to look at it that way.”
“I suppose having gotten to the final last year, there is that belief in the team that can happen again.”
Lauren Walsh was just phenomenal at the back, Sarah McKevitt looked like she could have won the Tokyo 2020 100m at a canter, Niamh O'Donoghue made an impressive debut, and Eva Mangan purred like a Rolls Royce all evening! #ccfc84 pic.twitter.com/nwEgNskylD
— SalemPhotos123 (@PhotosSalem) August 5, 2021
For now though, the focus turns to this weekend where the side head to Galway on Saturday at 2pm in a mid-table clash searching for three points.
Looking to her former team at the summit, it would appear once a Pea always a Pea as the Midfielder predicts them to retain their title if “she had to put my money on someone” as they’re “the most solid they’ve too much experience.”