Shels opt out of Champions League


Eircom League champions Shelbourne have confirmed that they won't be taking part in the Champions League this season.

The troubled club, who were demoted to the First Division earlier this year and have seen many of their key players leave, said that it had no intention of applying for a UEFA licence which would allow it to take part in the Champions League qualifying rounds.

"The club feels that following its recent success over the last number of years, it would not be of benefit to the clubs record to play in this season's Champions League qualifying rounds," said Shelbourne in a statement.

"It is also felt that it would be no beneift to the leagues co-efficeint in Europe, which Shelbourne FC along with other clubs has helped to raise," the club added.

Derry City, who are managed by former Shels boss Pat Fenlon will now take the club's place in the Champions League qualifying rounds, while St Patrick's Athletic will get a UEFA Cup spot alongside Drogheda United.

The FAI has welcomed the decision of Shelbourne F.C. not to apply for a licence with  Fran Gavin, director of the eircom League saying that it was "a common sense decision from the club". 

"Shelbourne's performances in Europe over recent years have greatly benefited the league's co-efficient and we share the club's own view that, given their current circumstances, it is best if the club does not apply for a UEFA licence this season," said Gavin