DERRY CITY: Shiels welcomes proposals to extend League of Ireland season

Derry City manager Kenny Shiels agrees the League of Ireland season should be extended.

Derry City manager Kenny Shiels agrees the League of Ireland season should be extended.

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DERRY CITY boss, Kenny Shiels has welcomed suggestions that the length of the League of Ireland season could be extended next year.

The FAI’s competitions director, Fran Gavin has indicated the 2017 campaign could kick-off at the end of February rather than its usual early March start date.

If the break coincides with Europe I think it will be a good decision. You have to do the best we can for our representatives that are flying the flag in Europe.

Kenny Shiels

In a move to tackle the fixture congestion which threatens to disrupt the league title race this year, the FAI could also decide to shorten the mid-season break next year.

Dundalk’s outstanding European adventure has led to a heavy fixture schedule while challengers, Cork City are also playing catch-up in their league campaign.

Mr Gavin suggested this week that there could be an announcement in the coming weeks.

“Over the next few weeks we’ll make some announcements around that, particularly around starting the league a little bit earlier,” he said.

“That’s a possibility from next year.”

And Derry boss, Shiels welcomed the possibility of extending the season.

“I think it would be good for the league,” said Shiels. “If the break coincides with Europe I think it will be a good decision. You have to do the best we can for our representatives that are flying the flag in Europe.”