Proposal for renovation of the association football league

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<ul><li>1.All illustrations, tables, dates, league positions, logos &amp; sponsors contained within this document are for modelling purposes only &amp; do not represent any approved plans, intentions, decisions or otherwise of the association or any of its committees. 1 </li></ul><p>2. Introduction Genesis II It is recognised that the Genesis II report &amp; the subsequent implementation process has injected a new level of ambition into the domestic game with regards to professionalism, licensing, holistic vision etc. However like most ambitious projects it is prudent to review progress after a period and alter course as required, taking account of lessons learned. Pyramid needed Although successful with regard to squad development the A league is judged insufficient as a third Tier A proposal is made to integrate Intermediate football with the LOI proper. Acting as a safety net allowing relegated clubs &amp; clubs facing administration to move down to regional leagues where costs are minimised &amp; an element of competition is retained (unlike current A league). A National Playoff system is envisaged as both an incentive for the development of the Intermediate game &amp; a route into the LOI proper for ambitious teams. No team shall go straight to the LOI Proper but must achieve it organically through the structure. Winter Football A Compromise Solution is proposed which would allow a partial return to winter football as well as a significant lead up time before European Football Encompasses a Xmas Soccer Season as a marketable finale to the season with the last round of Premier games taking place on St. Stephens day followed by the FAI Cup Final on New Years Day Major Reform!!! The reforms proposed in this document taken together are very substantial in both reach and measure. The intention is to put this vision to consultation &amp; gauge reaction of the various stakeholders in Irish Football. Reforms can be carried out on the whole, partially or in stages &amp; indeed the order of said stages can be flexible. Further research is required concerning all of the issues highlighted &amp; changes proposed in this presentation, as well as with regard to how they may be implemented. i.e. All scheduling outlined is for modelling purposes only &amp; much more in depth analysis with regard to both viability &amp; procedure is envisaged prior to implementation. 2 All illustrations, tables, dates, league positions, logos &amp; sponsors contained within this document are for modelling purposes only &amp; do not represent any approved plans, intentions, decisions or otherwise of the association or any of its committees. 3. All illustrations, tables, dates, league positions, logos &amp; sponsors contained within this document are for modelling purposes only &amp; do not represent any approved plans, intentions, decisions or otherwise of the association or any of its committees. Three Tier System Tier 1: 18 Team Premier It is hoped to grow the Premier division gradually to a max. 18 teams allowing for a 34 round league with all of the most recognisable teams playing each other twice. Tier 2: 10 Team Championship 36 rounds of football Evenly matched opposition Avoid current scenario where new entrants like Mervue etc have no chance of progression Tier3: National Intermediate Structure Northern, Southern , Eastern, Western &amp; Central Conference Divisions Relegated 1st division teams will enter competitive regional divisions; with reduced travel costs &amp; scaled down squads they may retain their fanbases &amp; recover slowly i.e. Cases like Kilkenny City etc. wouldnt have to die, just rescale. Teams breaking licensing &amp; administration rules can suffer real punishment being relegated down the divisions as far as Intermediate football Tier 3a: National Intermediate Playoffs Funding/prize money/media attention source for Intermediate football Promotion &amp; Relegation to 1st Div Monetary Incentive for teams to qualify to playoffs from respective divisions making leagues more competitive Requires Major Scheduling Changes!! Both LOI proper &amp; Intermediate to finish in December Intermediate starts earlier (Feb) but takes a summer break See Slides 10 &amp; 11 for scheduling details 3 4. All illustrations, tables, dates, league positions, logos &amp; sponsors contained within this document are for modelling purposes only &amp; do not represent any approved plans, intentions, decisions or otherwise of the association or any of its committees. 4 5. All illustrations, tables, dates, league positions, logos &amp; sponsors contained within this document are for modelling purposes only &amp; do not represent any approved plans, intentions, decisions or otherwise of the association or any of its committees. Premiership Shamrock Rovers Cork City Bohemians Derry City Sligo Rovers Limerick Galway United St Pats Waterford United Shelbourne FC Dundalk Monaghan United Sporting Fingal Bray Wanderers Drogheda UCD Finn Harps (Expansion) Wexford Youths (Expansion) 18 Team Elite National Division 34 rounds of games Glamour teams/ties Larger attendances 1 home &amp; 1 away fixture p.a. Gradual expansion to reach 18 Placings Winner - Champions League Places 2 &amp; 3 Europa League Places 1-6: Qualification for enhanced Setanta Cup, or byes in other cup competitions o Keep more teams in the mix longer into the season 2 automatic promotion/relegation places p.a. o Affording more 1st Div teams opportunity of entry to lucrative top division 2 teams enter relegation playoff o Keep more teams in the mix o Loser of 15 vs.16 (Prem) plays winner of 3 vs. 4 (1st) 5 6. All illustrations, tables, dates, league positions, logos &amp; sponsors contained within this document are for modelling purposes only &amp; do not represent any approved plans, intentions, decisions or otherwise of the association or any of its committees. National Championship Cobh Ramblers Athlone Town Tullamore Town Longford Town Salthill Devon Castlebar Celtic Carlow Tralee Dynamos Mervue United e.g. Kilkenny City (Expansion) e.g. Newbridge Town (Expansion) e.g. Mullingar (Expansion) 10 Team Nationwide Feeder Division 36 rounds of games Wide geographical spread Newcomers to the LOI proper are more likely to collect points in this evenly matched division Top 4 of 10 positions in play Carrot of a lucrative season in the Premier is attainable without risky financial (mis)management 2 home &amp; 2 away fixtures p.a. Relegation keeps all places competitive Possibility of further expansion in the future should the game grow in popularity / participation / attendance. Placings Automatic Promotion: Winner &amp; Runner-up Places 3 &amp; 4: Promotion Playoffs Last: Automatic Relegation: in the event of a qualified licensed club winning the Conferences Playoffs Relegation Playoff: in the event of a qualified licensed club finishing runner up in the Conference playoffs to a non-qualified winner Places 8 &amp; 9: Relegation Playoff: in the event of a qualified licensed club finishing runner up in the Conference playoffs to an automatically promoted &amp; qualified winner. Loser of 8 vs. 9 will play said runner up for 1st Div status Max of 2 teams relegated 6 7. Regional Intermediate Conferences Part 1: Create North, South, East, West &amp; Central Conferences East: Largest conference formed from LSL &amp; other eastern teams wishing to apply South: Formed from MSL North: Formed from USL Central: Formed from CCFL + L/M/C &amp; DL West: Formed from clubs in Galway, Mayo, Roscommon Sligo &amp; Leitrim Clubs may choose to play in a conference outside of their geographical region, bearing in mind they will have to travel more &amp; may find qualification to playoffs more difficult. i.e. LSL clubs from the Central region may continue in East if they so wish Clubs may even field separate teams in different conferences, however only 1 team from each club may enter the National Playoffs (Higher nominated team e.g. Supposing Port Laoise A (East) &amp; Port Laoise B (Central) were to qualify only the nominated A team could progress) National Playoffs To act as both a carrot and a prize money source, supporting &amp; encouraging clubs from the sparser regions (e.g. Connaught, rural Munster &amp; rural Midlands) to enter &amp; compete at an Intermediate level 8 Qualifiers See overleaf Part 2: Changeover of season (see slide11 for timelines) Switching from a continuous August to May season to a two part February to December season Allowing for Promotion &amp; Relegation to the National 1st Division should clubs so wish There are numerous obstacles &amp; challenges with regards to bringing about these sorts of changes to the intermediate league structure, not least convincing the numerous relevant stakeholders, scheduling a two part league ending in the winter time &amp; travel costs, amongst others. However it is hoped that the incentive of a marketable national competition structure may, after further study &amp; consultation, provide the impetus to achieve this vision. The changeover process can be designed to build this project to completion in stages. 7 All illustrations, tables, dates, league positions, logos &amp; sponsors contained within this document are for modelling purposes only &amp; do not represent any approved plans, intentions, decisions or otherwise of the association or any of its committees. 8. 8 All illustrations, tables, dates, league positions, logos &amp; sponsors contained within this document are for modelling purposes only &amp; do not represent any approved plans, intentions, decisions or otherwise of the association or any of its committees. Five Geographical Conferences East (3 qualifiers) o Largest Conference o Most playoff spots o Applicant teams o Saturday/Sunday lower divisions? o Applicants from AUL &amp; other leagues? o Lose some sides to Central? South (2 qualifiers) o Strong, established MSL o Attract new sides from further afield North (1 qualifier) o Well established USL o Little structural change required West (1 qualifier) o Need to form new intermediate division o Site of defunct CSL o Bedding down of Intermediate division here to require close support &amp; attention of authorities Central (1 qualifier) o Inside LSL at moment o Reduced geographical spread to make step up to intermediate more viable o Bedding down of Intermediate division here to require close support &amp; attention of authorities ***Restructure of scheduling &amp; structure are separate issues*** Regional Conferences Regular season Senior, Junior &amp; Schoolboy District Leagues Regular season Senior, Junior &amp; Schoolboy District Leagues Regular season Senior, Junior &amp; Schoolboy District Leagues Regular season Senior, Junior &amp; Schoolboy District Leagues Regular season Senior, Junior &amp; Schoolboy District Leagues 9. All illustrations, tables, dates, league positions, logos &amp; sponsors contained within this document are for modelling purposes only &amp; do not represent any approved plans, intentions, decisions or otherwise of the association or any of its committees. National Conference Playoff Series 8 Team National Playoff competition Held over 3 match days (1 week) Staged over Xmas period before cup final Part of Xmas soccer season Matches held in regional stadia closest to home team (Tallaght, Turners Cross, Terryland, Athlone, Brandywell) Can be expanded to 16 teams across 4 match days Qualification from 5 Regional Intermediate Conferences North, South, East, West &amp; Central Weighting to take account of stronger regions: - East - 3 teams, South - 2,North -1 ,West - 1 &amp; Central - 1 - Or for example: E6,S4,N2,W2,C2 in expanded format Winning team gains automatic promotion to Div 1 (Subject to desire of club for promotion, fulfilment of licensing criteria etc.) Runner-up eligible for playoff with second bottom team in Div 1 (Subject to desire of club for promotion, fulfilment of licensing criteria etc.) Clubs may enter &amp; win prize money without any intentions towards promotion Opportunity for local &amp; national media exposure, sponsorship, supporter buzz etc. Income source to invest as clubs see fit e.g. Training facilities, clubhouse, bars, stands etc. Clear route to become recognised National Intermediate Champion with minimal burden of nationwide travel Shop window/advancement route/scouting possibilities for ambitious young intermediate players/coaches Meaningful national competition for LOI standard players unable to commit to nationwide travel in Div 1 due to work commitments etc. Provides incentive towards participation/ambition at intermediate level outside of current soccer strongholds 9 10. National Playoffs 10 All illustrations, tables, dates, league positions, logos &amp; sponsors contained within this document are for modelling purposes only &amp; do not represent any approved plans, intentions, decisions or otherwise of the association or any of its committees. vs. 8 Intermediate teams 3 from Eastern, 2 from Southern, 1 from Northern, Western &amp; Central Conferences 3 game series held over1 week Part of Xmas Soccer Season Winner gains automatic promotion to 1st Div Runner Up gains entry to a playoff against loser of (8th vs. 9th) in 1st Div Teams do not have to be seeking advancement to LOI proper in order to participate 11. All illustrations, tables, dates, league positions, logos &amp; sponsors contained within this document are for modelling purposes only &amp; do not represent any approved plans, intentions, decisions or otherwise of the association or any of its committees. The Winter Compromise May December season 2 Months competitive football &amp; preseason before European competitions begin Flood Lit atmospheric Football Season Climax over Xmas period Climax doesnt clash With GAA Championship Clear identification Festive Soccer Season Branding &amp; Sponsorship opportunities Tie in with Intermediate Playoffs &amp; Cup Final (New Years Day) Clash with major English Premiership television events Can Marquee games rival normal EPL games on these dates? Will RTE welcome major products like St. Stephens Day Finale &amp; New Years Day Cup Final for free to air broadcast as a challenge to satellite broadcasters? Will crowds attend major LOI games over the festive period? Other Risk Factors: Congestion issues surrounding abandoned games There may be sense in frontloading games in the summer months to allow leeway around abandoned games towards season finale. Deterioration in football quality Messy football towards the end of the season could damage the product May also make things interesting Shock results, Battling performances, points gap swings. 11 12. All illustrations, tables, dates, league positions, logos &amp; sponsors contained within this document are for modelling purposes only &amp; do not represent any approved plans, intentions, decisions or otherwise of the association or any of its committees. Dec Jan Feb March April May June July Aug Sept Oct Nov Dec Ja Dec Jan Feb March April May June July Aug Sept Oct Nov Dec Ja Preseason Current Airtricity League Season (2010) Cup Final Preseason Proposed Airtricity League Seaso...</p>