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FAI committed to June return for domestic leagues as ban on all activity extended until May

The news comes following the announcement that Covid-19 restrictions are to remain in place until next month.

FAI's headquarters in Abbotstown.
FAI's headquarters in Abbotstown.
Image: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Updated Apr 10th 2020, 8:29 PM

THE FAI HAVE extended a ban on all football under its jurisdiction until 5 May, but says the association remains committed to a June return for the SSE Airtricity League and Women’s National League.

All football activity was previously suspended until 19 April, but the FAI have taken this decision following directives from the Government and the Department of Health.

Earlier today, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar announced that restrictions on public movement and other measures to contain the spread of Covid-19 are to remain in place until Tuesday 5 May.

“The Football Association of Ireland today announces an extension to the cessation order for all football under its jurisdiction until May 5th inclusive, following directives from Government and the Department of Health,” a statement from the FAI reads.

“The decision to extend the deadline for the return to football has been taken in light of the Covid-19 pandemic and in the best interests of our players, coaches, volunteers, supporters and staff. This decision will continue to be monitored on an ongoing basis.

The FAI is in communication with the Department of Health and Uefa on Covid-19 and will continue to follow all government guidelines. The Association advises all members, volunteers and stakeholders to respect the HSE guidelines on social distancing during this pandemic.

“We also appeal to everyone involved with Irish football to stay at home over the Easter weekend.

The Association remains committed to a June return to action for the SSE Airtricity League and Women’s National League. Regular meetings are ongoing with representatives from the National League Executive Committee and the Professional Footballer’s Association of Ireland to help our clubs and players through this difficult time.

“FAI Medical Director Dr. Alan Byrne has again advised the FAI that in the current exceptional circumstances, clubs should not engage in collective training during the cessation period for all football activity under the FAI’s jurisdiction.

“This recommendation is based on the government’s desire to avoid the spread of Covid-19 and Dr. Byrne strongly advises against clubs training during this cessation period which runs until 5 May inclusive.”

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