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NEW LEVEL 5 RESTRICTIONS HAVE SEVERE IMPACT ON THE GRASSROOTS GAME

YESTERDAY’S ANNOUNCEMENT of the county returning to Level 5 Lockdown has significant implictions for the game at grassroots here in Ireland.

With an extension out to the end of January, the prospects of a return to football have been further diminished – and the possibility of season 2021 bein written off, is a distinct possibility but flattening the curve and breaking the virus’ grip is the only real way forward – and consequently sport must take a back seat while this happens.

Schoolboys, juniors, intermediates and Third Level playing seasons are all under threat and while there is no definitive roadmap for season 2021, the hope is that a truncated season – whenever that might be, will be permitted once it is prudent and allowable.

The roll out of a C19 vaccine is a real positive for everyone, whether it will influence an earlier return to play, is simply not known at this stage.

The FAI and it’s affiliates have been compliant in adhering at all times to all Covid-19 protocols requested by the Government, HSE, NEPHET and Sports Ireland and that policy of support will not waver at this point.

Together we can beat the virus and following best practice is also best advice in these challenging times. Soccer can play its part by not giving the virus the opportunity to wreak further damage and misery to Irish society.

Man up and play your part – that’s real team work!

THE FOLLOWING IS AN UPDATE AS ISSUED (Dec 30) BY THE DEPARTMENT OF THE TAOISEACH

Organised outdoor gatherings

These are controlled environments with a named event organiser, owner or manager. For example: outdoor arts events, training events.

No organised outdoor gatherings should take place.

Exercise and sporting events

Training

People may meet with people from one other household in outdoor settings when taking exercise.

No indoor or outdoor exercise group activities, including those involving children, should take place.

Outdoor golf and tennis are not permitted.

Individual training only. No exercise or dance classes. No indoor or outdoor gatherings involving “individual training” except for professional and elite sports.

Matches and events

Professional, elite sports, horse racing, greyhound racing and approved equestrian events only are permitted to continue behind closed doors.

No other matches or events are to take place.

Gyms, leisure centres and swimming pools

Gyms, leisure centres and swimming pools must close from close of business on 31 December.

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