sundaylife

| 4.5°C Belfast

Northern Irish football set to benefit from £1million financial boost at all levels as FIFA release funds to IFA

Close

Jamie Mulgrew, Linfield captain, lifts the Gibson Cup as Linfield are crowned 2019/2020 Danske Bank Premiership champions. Danske Bank’s chief operating officer Liam Curran presented the trophy to Jamie at the National Stadium at Windsor Park.

Jamie Mulgrew, Linfield captain, lifts the Gibson Cup as Linfield are crowned 2019/2020 Danske Bank Premiership champions. Danske Bank’s chief operating officer Liam Curran presented the trophy to Jamie at the National Stadium at Windsor Park.

Jamie Mulgrew, Linfield captain, lifts the Gibson Cup as Linfield are crowned 2019/2020 Danske Bank Premiership champions. Danske Bank’s chief operating officer Liam Curran presented the trophy to Jamie at the National Stadium at Windsor Park.

Football in Northern Ireland is set for a FIFA windfall of over £1m, with Irish League clubs, Intermediate sides and the women's game amongst the beneficiaries.

The game's world governing body is releasing cash to all of its member Associations and, with the IFA handed £1,125,700, President David Martin has revealed how the "significant funds" will be divided here following a meeting at Board level.

In line with FIFA's wishes, around £375,000 will go to women's football which should lead to the appointment of a Director or Head of the game in Northern Ireland, while the rest of the sport will split £750,000.

Danske Bank Premiership clubs will each receive a £20,625 payment, Championship teams are set for £7,500 apiece and for Intermediate sides, it will be £1,875 with the balance being used by the Irish FA to help junior and youth football across the country with Covid-19 related issues including PPE equipment, sanitisers and thermometers, which will be distributed through leagues.

Martin outlined that an audit system will be put in place for the funds and it will be up to clubs to sign up with the IFA and indicate what they are using the money for and that the cash cannot be used for wages or new capital projects.

"FIFA indicated back in May that they would release some of their reserves to Associations around the world to help with problems brought on by Covid-19 and this is a significant amount of money coming to football in Northern Ireland," said Martin.

"At an IFA Board meeting, it was decided how the funding would be distributed and, in line with FIFA requirements, the women's game in Northern Ireland will be boosted a great deal.

"There will be an exciting new opportunity to fund a Director or Head of women's football, initially for two years, there will be payments made to each club and we plan to facilitate playing the Electric Ireland Women's Challenge Cup to a finish having been given permission to extend the season to December.

"There will also be significant funds for clubs in the Irish Premiership, Championship and Intermediate leagues, and the junior and youth game will also benefit."

Belfast Telegraph