Mid and East Antrim Borough Council is making final preparations in advance of the Dale Farm Milk Cup football tournament.
While the boundaries of local government organisation may have changed in 2015, the Ballymena area’s involvement in the world-famous competition remains as strong as ever.
The tournament kicks off next week with venues in Ballymena, Broughshane and Clough once again playing a key role in the Milk Cup’s success.
This will be the sixth year that Ballymena Showgrounds has hosted the prestigious finals night after Milk Cup officials deemed the state-of-the-art facilities at the Warden Street complex best suits the needs of the tournament’s showpiece night.
Mid and East Antrim Borough Council Mayor, Councillor Billy Ashe said: “I’m delighted that once again Council is a principal sponsor of the Dale Farm Milk Cup.
“This is a major international tournament and it is great that we will again host matches at Clough, Broughshane and of course the finals night, at Ballymena Showgrounds.
“This is the 33rd Milk Cup and the tournament continues to expand and grow. I expect this year’s tournament will be the best yet and I’m really looking forward to it.”
Mid and East Antrim Borough Council’s Operational Committee Chairman, Andrew Wilson added: “The Milk Cup will showcase some of our superb facilities within the Borough.
“Council continues to sponsor the Milk Cup and we are glad that this supports an already successful tournament.
“Our local accommodation and hospitality providers get a real benefit and our local community gets to enjoy this exciting event right on our own doorstep.”
The tournament was launched recently when the draw was made by former Northern Ireland striker David Healy who said: “It has gone global and is full of exciting sides from all parts of the world.
“It still gives youngsters a world class stage to play on,” added Healy, who played for Machester United in the event.
The Dale Farm Milk Cup tournament begins with the traditional parade of competing teams through Coleraine on Sunday, July 26, concluding with finals night at Ballymena on Friday, July 31.