The Football Association of Ireland and the 20 SSE Airtricity League of Ireland clubs have agreed on a working group to develop a new strategy for professional league football in Ireland.
The agreement was reached at the end of a two-day National League strategic planning weekend hosted by the FAI at its Abbotstown headquarters in Dublin.
The meeting heard from a number of external groups and internal experts and served as the first step on the way to ‘building the future together’. The FAI also invited representatives of the Professional Footballers’ Association of Ireland, Supporters Groups, referees and the newly formed League Managers’ Association of Ireland.
An all-island league a possibility
Niall Quinn and members of his Ireland Visionary Group, including Kieran Foley, Barry Lysaght and former Irish striker Stephanie Roche, outlined their plans to offer their expertise to the league and the FAI going forward and are keen to become part of the new Association post EGM and AGM.
Also on Saturday morning, the league clubs were addressed by Kieran Lucid who outlined his plans for the All-Island League and went into detail on a timeline for the proposal.
FAI staff and UEFA representatives addressed the meeting over both days before a decision was taken to establish a working group which will look at all possibilities and formulate a strategy by the end of the 2019 playing season.
“We look forward to facilitating the working group over the coming weeks as we prioritise the SSE Airtricity League of Ireland as part of a new FAI”, said FAI GM Noel Mooney.
“An important new chapter for the game here has arrived and we are all focused on doing the right things for Irish football.”