Belfast Telegraph

Ards and Newry face battle to triumph in very tough title race

 

By Robert Jones

The NI Football League returns with a bang tomorrow as the new Bluefin Sport Championship season kicks off.

Newry City and Ards both return to the division following relegation and are joined by last season's Premier Intermediate League champions Queen's University.

Andrew Johnston, Managing Director of the NI Football League, stated: "The profile of the Championship has never been higher, and the commitment from title sponsors Bluefin Sport has played a huge part in raising that awareness.

"We had a memorable campaign last season, with Larne winning the Bluefin Sport Championship - but this season will be too close to call.

"We wish all the competing teams best of luck ahead of Saturday's first round of fixtures," he added.

Alyn Spratt, Head of Sport (NI & ROI) for Bluefin, said: "We are delighted to be title sponsors of the Championship for the third consecutive season.

"The buzz around the league continues to grow and we can't wait for it to get under way!" he added.

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The action kicks off with notable games including a Mid-Ulster derby at Lakeview Park between Loughgall and Portadown, newly promoted Queen's University travel to Ballyclare Comrades and last season's Irish Cup finalists Ballinamallard United host Knockbreda at Ferney Park.

Tomorrow's Bluefin Sport Championship fixtures (3pm): Ballinamallard United v Knockbreda, Ballyclare Comrades v Queen's University, Dundela v Dergview, H&W Welders v Newry City, Loughgall v Portadown, PSNI v Ards.

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