Noel Murray and Jimmy Ennis were two ardent Manchester United supporters from South Dublin who, when Manchester United reached the European Cup Final in 1968, tried unsuccessfully to obtain match tickets. They had heard that a United supporters Branch existed in Dublin but could never make contact with them, so after the final, they made the decision to form a Branch of their own. Their first meeting took place in Jimmy's flat in Clorinda Park, Dun Laoghaire. Present on that momentous night were; Noel Murray, Jimmy Ennis, Bernie Maguire & Rita Hughes. Frank Mullen attended the second meeting, which took place in August or September 1968.
The inspiration to form MUSC Dublin. Manchester United win the 1968 European Cup.
The first thing they did was to make contact with Les Olive, a former player who was then secretary of Manchester United. He wrote back saying that there was already a Branch in Dublin so there was no way a second Branch would be allowed. Further correspondence followed explaining there were many supporters who were willing to join but that contact could not be made with the Dublin Branch, and could a new Supporters Club be formed. Les Olive also tried unsuccessfully to contact the Dublin Branch. As it was proving impossible to trace them, Manchester United finally agreed to allow a new Branch to be formed in Dublin, namely the South Dublin Branch. An advertisement was placed in the Evening Herald and the first meeting took place in Ross's Hotel, Dun Laoghaire in May 1969.
Denis Law signs for Manchester United. The contract drafted by Les Olive (sitting right), overseen by Sir Matt Busby & Jimmy Murphy.
In between the meetings in Jimmy's flat and the first meeting in Ross's Hotel, other people had come on board; Des Healy (first travel manager) Paddy Larkin, Joe Dodd, Dermot Ring, Leo Flynn, Pat Whelan. Along with Noel, Jimmy, Rita, Bernie & Frank, this was the nucleus of the first Committee. This Committee was never elected as it was decided on the floor that the people who formed the Branch should act as the first Committee.
Shortly after this, our first trip to Old Trafford took place for a combined cost of four pounds ten shillings. Bernie Maguire was our first Secretary, Leo Flynn was our first Treasurer with Noel Murray as Chairperson. We would not have survived without a meeting place and we have to thank Vincent Heart who as manager of Ross's Hotel never charged us for all of the years we were there. Sir Matt Busby was elected as our Honorary Club President and still remains so to this day.
Sir Matt Busby, Honorary Club President of MUSC Ireland
The Branch progressed from running four trips a season to the present day; where we now run trips to all of Manchester United's home fixtures. We started off as the South Dublin Branch, then we became the Dublin Branch and we are now the Ireland Branch and celebrated our 50th Anniversary in 2019 with over 1000 registered members.
We need to thank a lot of people who gave up their time to keep the Branch running to name but a few; Noel, Jimmy, of course Frank Mullen, Des Fay, Dessie Byrne, Sean Tobin, Mick O'Toole, Shay Weafer, Bernie Maguire, Harry Smith, and to so many more, many thanks for your efforts.