Belfast Telegraph

Linfield to face Dundalk in first ever Unite the Union Champions Cup

Linfield's Bastien Hery, Pat Jennings OBE and Dundalk's Chris Shields with the Unite the Union Champions Cup trophy at Windsor Park (Philip Magowan/Inpho)
Linfield's Bastien Hery, Pat Jennings OBE and Dundalk's Chris Shields with the Unite the Union Champions Cup trophy at Windsor Park (Philip Magowan/Inpho)

As Danske Bank Premiership champions, Linfield will take on SSE Airtricity Premier Division champions Dundalk in the first ever Unite the Union Champions Cup next month.

The two sides will face each other in a two-legged tie, with the first leg taking place on Friday, November 8 at Windsor Park and the return leg at Dundalk's Oriel Park on Monday, November 11.

Linfield will receive €25,000 just for competing in the game, as will Dundalk, with the winners receiving an additional €25,000 in sponsorship money from trade union Unite.

Another €25,000 will be awarded to both teams, however this will be ring-fenced for community-based projects in the Belfast area to encourage growth.

It is the first time teams from the north and south will compete against each other in a competitive cross-border competition since the Setanta Sports Cup ended in 2014.

"This is a hugely exciting tournament and one that will bring benefits to clubs and the wider football family in Northern Ireland," said Irish FA chief executive Patrick Nelson at the tournament's launch.

"I am looking forward to the games in November and to seeing this tournament become a regular fixture on the football calendar - north and south."

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Linfield's home game against Dungannon Swifts, which was set for Saturday, November 9, has been postponed as a result of these fixtures.

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