The Under-14 League of Ireland season won’t start until next July to accommodate the completion of the traditional Kennedy Cup tournament.
Tensions have been heightened in recent years from conflict between schoolboys’/girls’ leagues and League of Ireland clubs for Under-14 talent but the FAI board on Tuesday rubberstamped a compromise.
Instead of the Under-14 National League starting in March, it will be deferred to allow the week-long Kennedy Cup at Limerick University remain as the flagship event of the schoolboys’/girls’ calendar. The vast majority of the 640 participants would be expected to join League of Ireland clubs immediately afterwards.
Players such as Roy Keane, Damien Duff, Robbie Brady, and, more recently, Jason Knight and Nathan Collins, represented their leagues at the yearly Kennedy Cup.
Covid-19 led to the 2020 tournament being scrapped and this year’s instalment was contested regionally, rather than in a central location. The semi-finals are scheduled for this weekend; Cork facing Waterford while the DDSL take on South Belfast.