Dublin University Football Club

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Dublin University
Full nameDublin University Football Club
Nickname(s)Trinity Rugby
Founded1854; 169 years ago (1854)
Ground(s)College Park, Dublin (Capacity: 500)
ChairmanJohn Boyd
PresidentAlan Rogan
Coach(es)Tony Smeeth, Hugh Maguire
Captain(s)James Hickey
League(s)All-Ireland (DA1)
2022–236th.[1] pattern_la1=_redborder
1st kit
2nd kit
Official website

Dublin University Football Club (DUFC) is the rugby union club of the Trinity College, in Dublin, Ireland, which plays in Division 1A of the All-Ireland League.


The first known record of the Club appears under the heading 'Trinity College' in the Daily Express of 1 December 1855 and is taken to show that it had then been in existence for at least a year:

FOOTBALL. - A match will be played in the College Park today (Saturday) between original and new members of the club. Play to commence at two o'clock College time.[2]

Dublin University team of the 1870s

The club had thus been founded by about 1854, and it has a well-documented, continuous history since then, which gives it a strong claim to be considered the world's oldest extant football club of any code.[3] Although Guy's Hospital FC, had been founded in London in 1843, so had existed before DUFC, it later folded up for some years during the nineteenth century.[2] Football in Trinity pre-dates the foundation of the Club itself. A poem by Edward Lysaght shows that it was being played in the College Park in the 1780s.[2]

Being the oldest rugby club in Ireland, DUFC has won its fair share of trophies over the years. Its most notable achievement in recent years was the winning of the All-Ireland League Division 2 in the 2003–04 season, which also gained the club promotion to Division 1. This level of competition was short-lived, however, with the club returning to Division 2 after two seasons.[citation needed]

Present status[edit]

The DUFC 1st XV currently plays in Division 1A of the All-Ireland League. The club also fields three Junior teams who compete in the Leinster J1, J3 and J4 Metro Leagues,[4] and two U20 teams who play in the JP Fanagan Premier and Pennant leagues respectively. They are the current Frazer McMullen All Ireland Champions, beating Clontarf U20 in the 2018 final.[4]

The 1stXV plays against University College Dublin in the annual Colours Match which has been ongoing since its inception in 1952. Trinity has won on 24 occasions, the latest being the 2017/18 match. The club also has a Women's XV, which has played in AIL division 3.[5]

In October 2020, the club had three players, Liam Turner, Michael Silvester and Jack Dunne, play in Leinster's Pro14 win over Zebre.[6][7][8]


The club's main playing field is College Park,[9] which is within the grounds of Trinity in the Dublin city centre. It also has two other football fields used mainly by the Junior teams on Santry Avenue in the Dublin suburb of Santry.[5][10]

Notable players[edit]


Dublin University Football Club has a long tradition of its players gaining the highest international honours, with over 160 past players being capped for Ireland since 1875. Some of the most famous and presently memorable are listed below.

British & Irish Lions[edit]

DUFC also has a long history of providing British & Irish Lions tourists, with the most recent contribution being Jamie Heaslip in 2013.

Ireland coaches[edit]

Dublin University past players Roly Meates and Gerry Murphy both went on to coach Ireland at different times. Meates is also an honorary life member of DUFC, having coached the club for 28 years.



  1. ^ League Tables 2022–23 at irishrugby.ie
  2. ^ a b c History Archived 2008-12-25 at the Wayback Machine at dufc.ie
  3. ^ Rugby: A New Zealand History Archived 24 June 2021 at the Wayback Machine by Ron Palenski, Auckland University Press (2015) – ISBN 978-1869408367
  4. ^ a b ":: Leinster Rugby ::". Archived from the original on 25 September 2009. Retrieved 21 September 2009. at sportsmanager.ie
  5. ^ a b Club Info Archived 18 September 2008 at the Wayback Machine at dufc.ie
  6. ^ "Three DUFC Men's Players Selected for Leinster's Pro14 Matchday Squad Tonight". www.universitytimes.ie. Retrieved 10 November 2020.
  7. ^ "Nine-try Leinster see off Zebre". BBC Sport. Retrieved 10 November 2020.
  8. ^ RDS, John O'Sullivan at the. "Dan Leavy gets back in the thick of things as Leinster trounce Zebre". The Irish Times. Retrieved 10 November 2020.
  9. ^ [1] at maps.google.com
  10. ^ [2] at maps.google.com

External links[edit]