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# Historic
FAI to introduce professional contracts for players in Women's National League
The professional contracts will be introduced from 1 December, 2022.

LAST UPDATE | Nov 30th 2022, 1:51 PM

THE FAI HAS announced the introduction of professional contracts for players in the SSE Airtricity Women’s National League [WNL] from the 2023 season onwards.

This historic agreement has been reached after the National Leagues Committee approved the introduction of professional contracts, and has been ratified by the FAI Board.

A statement released from the association, in conjunction with the League of Ireland, reads that the contracts will be introduced from Thursday 1 December.

Republic of Ireland stalwart Áine O’Gorman has spoken in the past about the need for the league to become a semi-professional competition. Speaking to The42 earlier this year, she said:

“It is disappointing that we’re still not in that position where we are going semi-professional and looking to go professional but we have made significant steps.

“Hopefully, in time, that will change and we will be able to offer a full-time environment for players in Ireland.”

Today’s FAI statement adds that players on these contracts “will be subject to the same Standard Player Contract and minimum wage regulations as men’s players in the League of Ireland.”

WNL clubs will not be obliged to offer professional contracts to players, and will have the option of having full-time or part-time professional players or amateur players in their squads.

A working group will also be introduced to monitor implementation and effects of the introduction of professional contracts to the League.

“Today’s announcement is hugely important in the development of the women’s game in Ireland and represents a watershed moment for the SSE Airtricity Women’s National League,” says League of Ireland Director, Mark Scanlon following today’s announcement.

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“Though attendances, standards and exposure of the game have increased in recent years, women’s football in Ireland still has a long way to go to achieve the potential we know it has.

“The announcement of professional contracts for SSE Airtricity Women’s National League players will prove to be a significant milestone in the history of the game here and comes at an apt time as our Women’s National Team, which features many of our WNL players, gets ready to compete at the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023.

“Clubs will now be able to provide certainty and a platform for growth for their players as they look to progress on and off the pitch. We look forward to working with all our League of Ireland Clubs to help ease this exciting transition.”

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