Last season proved to be truly memorable as Dundalk retained the Premier Division title, lost out narrowly to Cork City in the Irish Daily Mail FAI Senior Cup, and embarked on a historic run to the group stages of the UEFA Europa League.
St Patrick’s Athletic held off Limerick to hold onto the EA SPORTS Cup, but Limerick were able to celebrate promotion as First Division champions, while Drogheda United joined them in the top flight following their terrific campaign.
The 2017 season promises to be just as entertaining as action begins on Friday, February 24th.
Speaking at the launch of the news season, Ronan Brady, Head of Marketing & Digital at SSE Airtricity, said:
“As dedicated League sponsors, for the new season we wanted to create a concept that was completely different, therefore creating ‘The Next Generation of Legends.’ We wanted to highlight the talent and success that the League has created through the years. Our League has created so many of our Irish Legends, so we want to encourage people to come and see the next generation in action right on your doorstep.”
Fran Gavin, FAI Director of Competitions, announced that 28 live games will be shown RTÉ2 and eir Sport throughout the season. The Irish Daily Mail FAI Senior Cup Semi-Finals & Final are to be broadcast live on RTÉ2, while the EA SPORTS Cup Final will be live on eir Sport on Saturday, September 16th. Gavin also noted that
Soccer Republic will continue showing weekly highlights. Following discussions with the Scottish FA, both Bray Wanderers and Sligo Rovers will be entered into the IRN-BRU Scottish Challenge Cup for next season.
A new official League website will be live in the run-up to the opening round of games. Created in association with the German FA, the website will transform the live match experience for League supporters as well as bringing the latest news and videos to a mobile-optimised platform.
Television coverage remains paramount to the promotion of the League, so the commitment of both RTÉ and eir Sport to broadcast live games is most welcome.
Early season live TV games:
Friday, February 24: Dundalk v Shamrock Rovers, Oriel Park, KO 20:00, eir Sport.
Friday, March 3: Shamrock Rovers v Bohemians, Tallaght Stadium, KO 19:30, RTÉ2.
Friday, March 10: Drogheda United v Cork City, United Park, KO 20:00, eir Sport.
Saturday, March 25: Cork City v Dundalk, Turner’s Cross, KO 15:00, RTÉ2.
Friday, March 31: Dundalk v Drogheda United, Oriel Park, KO 19:30, RTÉ2.
Friday, April 7: Cork City v Derry City, Turner’s Cross, KO 19:30, RTÉ2.