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Dublin: -1°C Thursday 15 April 2021

Drogheda granted reprieve while Galway prepare for legal challenge

Drogheda and Bohemians have been awarded Premier Division Licences at this morning’s licensing meeting while Galway’s top-flight status is in jeopardy.

Image: ©INPHO/Lorraine O'Sullivan

DROGHEDA UNITED have been restored to the Airtricity League Premier Division following a meeting of the Independent Club Licensing Committee this morning.

United, who were relegated from the top-flight at the end of last season, have been awarded a Premier Division licence for 2011 following the collapse of Sporting Fingal. Without the continuation of financial support from their main backer, Gerry Gannon, Fingal were forced to cancel the contracts of 13 players and cease trading last Thursday.

The decision to award the license to Drogheda is likely to anger Monaghan United Chairman Jim McGlone. This morning’s Irish Sun carries quotes from McGlone in which he described the Louth club as “an embarrassment to the league”.

For the last 10 to 15 years, Monaghan have been a credit to the league, keeping within budgets, paying our players and doing everything required by licensing.

Drogheda have been an embarrassment to the league for the last three years. It is only six weeks ago that they were saying their existence as a club was at stake.

McGlone may yet have his wish and see Monaghan in the Premier Division as Galway United have only been awarded an “A Championship” licence.

Galway hung on to their Premier Division place last season after rallying to an eighth-place finish. However, this morning’s licensing meeting deemed that the club had not fulfilled the necessary financial criteria and denied them a license.

Galway will now have a five-day window within which they can appeal the decision, a step which they are expected to take. The club’s spokespeople were unavailable for comment when contacted by TheScore earlier this afternoon.

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One side who now appear likely to feature in the Premier Division are last year’s runners-up, Bohemians, who are all suffering from their own well-publicised difficulties. The Phibsboro club finally agreed payment conditions with their remaining players last week, a factor which was likely to have been decisive in the awarding of a top-flight license.

As yet, it is still not known if Bohs will have a sufficient squad of players to defend their Setanta Cup title. The competition begins this evening with Linfield hosting Dundalk while Lisburn Distillery travel to Belfield to take on UCD.

Bohs were scheduled to launch their defense against Portadown next Monday but that game has been postponed to allow the Armagh side to play their Irish Cup replay against H&W Welders.

About the author:

Niall Kelly

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