FAI says underage national league football is cancelled due to Government advice

The FAI said it's disappointed to announce that the return of underage National League matches for boys and girls, from Under-13 to Under-19 level, has been cancelled due to guidance from the Government.

The association had expected the games to return from this weekend, but that's will not now be the case.

"The association had felt that the broader new Level 3 COVID-19 guidelines issued by Government would allow for the resumption of elite Underage football as it had done before the Level 5 lockdown, but it has been made clear to us that this is not the case," said the FAI's statement this afternoon.

"The FAI regrets the need to have to issue this directive given Irish football’s widespread adherence to the guidelines to date and the negligible number of COVID-19 cases within our underage National Leagues and grassroots games that are run with great efficiency and care by our loyal administrators, volunteers and employees.

"We are now asking all parties to review the next steps necessary to facilitate a safe return to playing matches for all our players and clubs across all levels – elite football, adult amateur and underage - at the earliest opportunity," it added.

"We remain committed to working with our partners to allow for the return of competitive football for all ages and all levels of the game as soon as it is possible in this COVID-19 pandemic.

"The FAI will always respect the prevailing government’s COVID-19 guidelines in place at any given time. We assure Government that football will abide by these Level 3 guidelines and reminds all affiliates of our responsibility in this regard," it said.

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