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FAQ: What happens next now that Monaghan United are gone?

We take a look at some of the major questions following Monaghan’s decision to withdraw from the Airtricity League.

Gortakeegan, home of Monaghan United FC (file photo).
Gortakeegan, home of Monaghan United FC (file photo).
Image: ©INPHO/Morgan Treacy

What now for Monaghan United?

This morning, Monaghan United chairman Jim McGlone announced that the club has withdrawn from the Airtricity League of Ireland Premier Division for reasons that are “mainly but not only financial.” Although the club will no longer play senior football at the highest level, it will not cease to exist.

“This is in no way the end of Monaghan United; in fact, it is a new beginning,” McGlone said in a statement. “A new direction has been chosen by the club, and it is our intention to pour all our energy, experience and facilities into the development of football in the county of Monaghan.”

What is the FAI doing about this?

The FAI has called a board meeting in Poland this afternoon to consider the situation and discuss the next steps. In an initial statement released earlier today, the FAI outlined the support which it has provided to Monaghan United including the provision of a €150,000 loan for facility development.

What will happen to the players?

All of Monaghan United’s current squad will be released from their contracts. Under a strict application of the league’s transfer rules, registered players would not be able to sign for another team until the transfer window re-opens on 1 July. However the PFAI has lodged a request for a derogation to be granted to the players which would allow them to sign immediately for a new club. The Association expects that request to be granted later today.

Will they be paid any money they are owed?

In this morning’s statement, Jim McGlone assured all of Monaghan United’s creditors that their accounts with the club will continue to be honoured. The PFAI say that they “assume that players’ wages which are currently in arrears and the remainder of their contracts will be honoured. We look forward to hearing from the club with details of how these payments will be made.”

What will happen with the Airtricity League Premier Division?

Subject to confirmation by the FAI, in accordance with Rule 18.1 of the league’s Participation Agreement, all of Monaghan United’s results for the current season to date will be expunged from the record. The league will then be completed by the 11 remaining teams as a 30-game season.

How will the new league table look?

Again subject to confirmation, this is how the new Premier Division league table will look.

  • Sligo Rovers Pld 13 GD +14 Pts 28
  • St Patrick’s Athletic Pld 12 GD +10 Pts 21
  • Shamrock Rovers Pld 12 GD +8 Pts 20
  • Drogheda United Pld 13 GD +3 Pts 20
  • Derry City Pld 13 GD +2 Pts 18
  • Shelbourne Pld 13 GD -4 Pts 18
  • Bohemian FC Pld 13 GD -3 Pts 15
  • Bray Wanderers Pld 13 GD -4 Pts 15
  • Cork City Pld 13 GD -2 Pts 14
  • Dundalk Pld 12 GD -14 Pts 11
  • UCD Pld 13 GD -10 Pts 9

What will happen with promotion and relegation in the Premier Division this season?

According to Rule 18.2 of the Participation Agreement, the number of relegation and relegation play-off places in the division will be reduced by one but it is unclear what approach the FAI will take. When Dublin City ceased to exist midway through the 2006 season, the composition of the Premier Division for the following season was left in the hands of an independent assessment group.

What happens to Monaghan’s place in the FAI Cup?

The FAI will also have to make a decision on Monaghan’s place in the draw for the third round of the FAI Cup. The two most obvious options are a) to reinstate Sligo Rovers, the team they beat in the second round or b) to allow one team a bye into the quarter-finals. The draw for the third round will be made next month.

Monaghan United withdraws from Airtricity League

FAI and PFAI criticise handling of Mons announcement *UPDATE*

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Niall Kelly

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