Monaghan withdraw from Airtricity League
Soccer:Monaghan United have withdrawn from the Airtricity League due to the financial constraints of playing in the Premier Division. The club, who are currently bottom of the table with just nine points from 14 games, have said their involvement was no longer sustainable.In a statement issued this morning by the club chairman Jim McGlone the club said the decision was only taken “after much deliberation and soul searching.” The statement went on to say, “This decision was a hard one and not taken lightly but it was felt that this was the only real option left to us at this time … however for a number of reasons this was no longer sustainable and with a heavy heart we decided to bring to an end our involvement with the Airtricity League of Ireland.
“The reason we have taken this decision is mainly but not only financial. To keep a team playing at the highest level in this country is expensive and with the clubs inability to tie down a anchor sponsor, coupled with the rising costs of membership of senior football and the lack of support from the national league it was felt that no other option was available.
“However this is in no way the end of Monaghan United, in fact it is a new beginning, a new direction has been chosen by the club, and it is our intention to pour all our energy, experience and facilities into the development of football in the county of Monaghan. Monaghan United will sit down with all of its members and interested parties to explore how best to achieve this.”
The statement went on to thank all of the clubs’ members, supporters and sponsors, as well as players and management, whilst also assuring all creditors that accounts with them would be honoured.
The Professional Footballers’ Association of Ireland (PFAI) expressed its surprise and disappointment at Monaghan’s withdrawal, issuing a statement saying, “Prior to this, no discussion had taken place with the PFAI nor was any indication of their impending withdrawal communicated to this association. No player we have spoken to was contacted by the club prior to the statement being released and many players first heard that they had lost their jobs through Twitter.
“We find it extraordinary that no attempt was made to reach a solution with the players either directly with them or through this association.
Situations like this have arisen in the past and agreements have been reached in order to keep a team in the league. It is hugely disappointing that players and fans have seen a club withdraw from the league in these circumstances without an effort being made to explore all possibilities with the players.
“It is, however, a relief to hear that all creditors will be paid and we assume that players’ wages which are currently in arrears and the remainder of their contracts will be honoured. We look forward to hearing from the club with details of how these payments will be made.”