Linfield and Crusaders out to earn a of increased pot in Irn-Bru Cup
Linfield and Crusaders will once again be Northern Ireland's representatives in the IRN-Bru Cup, and this year they will compete for a bigger prize-fund.
The two top teams in the Danske Bank Premiership last season will compete for the 2017 trophy and, like last season, will enter at the second round stage.
There they will be joined by Welsh competitors Gap Connah's Quay Nomads and The New Saints, along with the winners from round one.
Bray Wanderers and Sligo Rovers will be two new competing teams from the SSE Airtricity League. The cross-league tournament features several changes this year, with the increase in prize money from £308,000 to £335,200 the main change.
Teams that require overseas travel, which would include David Healy's side and Crusaders should they be drawn away, will also receive £5,000 for each game, a 25 per cent jump from last year's total. Other changes include a reduction in rounds from seven to six, meaning the competition will run from August to March.
• Bangor have announced the appointed a new five-man Board of Directors, which officially took charge of the club on Tuesday night.
Nicky Davidson will chair the Board, where he is joined by Jim Russell, Gerry Watson, Graham Bailie and Simon Stuart.
Bangor have also announced that Director of Football Kyle Spiers and Head Coach Spike Hill have resigned from their roles with the club.
Meanwhile, Glenavon have announced a friendly against Crystal Palace's Development side at Mourneview Park on Monday July 17 with a 7:45pm kick-off.