Séamus Coleman given Freedom of Donegal

Republic of Ireland captain said he was honoured to be recognised in his own county

Everton and Republic of Ireland’s Seamus Coleman with Dylan McCrory at the County House in Lifford, Donegal where he received the Freedom Of Donegal from Donegal County Council. Photograph: Margaret McLaughlin

Republic of Ireland captain Séamus Coleman was walking tall in Donegal on Friday after a civic reception was hosted in his honour by Donegal Co Council, and he was given the Freedom of Donegal.

Coleman, who is currently recovering from a broken leg injury, said that he was “honoured” to be recognised in his own county.

The Killybegs man continued: “I am very proud of this. Home is where the heart is for me and home is where I will end up.”

He said he has no specific target for a return to action but is on the road to recovery and says it is “more about ticking boxes in the short term”.


Coleman added he was “hungry to get back in action.”

The Everton defender’s achievements both on and off the field were praised by the Cathaoirleach Cllr Terence Slowey who described the Killybegs native as “an inspirational person and a wonderful ambassador for Donegal.”

He added: “He is a wonderful role model for the children and young people of this county. He has achieved great things in his career and although he has reached the pinnacle of his sport he has never forgotten his roots. He remains a humble and genuine person and his commitment to Donegal and in particular, his commitment to Killybegs is beyond reproach”.

Indeed, Coleman keeps a close eye on the fortunes of the Killybegs GAA team as well as St Catherine’s, the local soccer team that he played for before going to Sligo Rovers, and then onto Everton in 2009.

Coleman is the eighth recipient of a silver badge and pin specially commissioned by the council which is reserved exclusively for those on whom the Freedom of the County is conferred.

Messages of support and congratulations were sent from FAI chief executive John Delaney and Republic of Ireland manager Martin O’Neill as well as FAI president Tony Fitzgerald.