Dublin Dogos RFC is no ordinary rugby club. They dream of a world without walls, where everyone is welcome. A world where a shared love of rugby connects communities and cultures.
The club was founded in 2016 by a group of Argentinians living in Ireland. But it’s much more than a rugby club where Argentinian expats reminisce about their home country. It’s a meeting point for people of all colour, creed and race.
An emphasis on integration and social inclusion is at the heart of Dublin Dogos. They work closely with embassies to get the word out to migrant communities in Ireland about the club. Diego Menendez, one of the club’s founding members, says that they want to show communities who they are and what they can do.
And that turns out to be a lot! The club now counts seventeen different nationalities in its ranks. There are players from Ireland, Argentina, South Africa, England, Wales, Scotland, Australia, New Zealand, Belgium, France, Italy, Spain, Holland, Tonga, Canada, Mexico and Brazil. Phew!
Dublin Dogos is not quite three years old but it’s going from strength to strength. With seventy players, they have built up a solid team in a short space of time. They’ve also built up an international fan base thanks to the varied nationalities of their players. The club has more Facebook followers than many of the more well-established clubs. And they have amazing training facilities thanks to Monkstown RFC.
Guido Volpi, who now plays for Ospreys, almost joined the team in 2017. Volpi was due to start playing for Dogos when he was called to play for Narbonne. Diego says Dogos wanted the best for Volpi, and they’re very pleased he’s doing well.
Bringing Home the Silver
So how is the season going for Dublin Dogos? According to Diego, it started off well before taking a bit of a downturn. However, they secured eleven new players and their season has picked up again. They’re even hoping to bring home some silverware soon. Go Dogos!
Diego is Argentinian and has been living in Ireland since 2010. Before that, he lived in England and Wales for more than ten years. He thinks Ireland is the best and most friendly place for a club like Dublin Dogos. And, he says, the Leinster rugby community have been very accepting. He points out that there is a nice synergy between the clubs.
It’s not all about the rugby either. After games Dogos treats other clubs to traditional Argentinian and South African bbq fare. They feel it’s important to share their cultures with the Irish rugby community. Diego says they want to make everyone feel at home.
We hear a lot these days about social inclusion and integration. Dublin Dogos is a shining example of what can be achieved. In a very practical way, it serves as a meeting point for people of all nationalities to come together through the sport of rugby.
So, why not get behind this up and coming team? You can even buy your very own Dublin Dogos shirt!