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WOMEN’S THIRD LEVEL SEASON SET FOR A BUSY PERIOD

Joey Malone

By John Hudson

Joey Malone is looking forward to a hectic couple of months for the women’s area of colleges and universities football beginning early next month.

‘The women’s game in Third Level institutions suffered badly with the onset of the Covid-19 crisis. In 2020 in the league, we only managed to complete the Premier Division before the March lockdown. As a result, the Division One final never got played and our popular cup competitions were also put on hold for the past two seasons. 

So, we’re delighted that after successfully returning to playing league games last November, we can now plan ahead to complete the final stages of the leagues and begin playing the cups.’

Malone is a well known figure in Irish football having had a stellar career as a player, manager, coach and talent scout for many years before moving into the fast-developing women’s area in recent times.

The Dubliner first took charge of the Dublin IT women’s squad in the Colleges and Universities League some years ago and is currently head coach to the new Technology University Dublin women’s side as well as acting as assistant manager to Noel King at Women’s National League champions Shelbourne.

Last year Malone also moved into the administrative area after being elected chairman of the Women’s Soccer Colleges Association of Ireland (WSCAI).

‘Its an exciting time to be involved in the women’s game, I find the application and desire among the girls is second to none, they all work hard and are all in it together as a tight knit group.

‘As a committee we have tried to work around all the covid restrictions to make it as easy as possible for teams to resume playing. We felt it was important to get them all back playing after nearly two years without competitions and do whatever was necessary to achieve this.’

The draws for both the final stages of the leagues and the opening round draws in the Kelly and Lydon Cups took place during the week so all is set now for some exciting games.

The 2020 Premier Division title holders Ulster University will face UCC in a semi-final tie which because of the distance rule will be played on a suitable neutral venue while Maynooth University beaten finalists last time are drawn to visit NUI Galway.

The Kelly Cup has been split into North and South sections to reduce travel and it too has a number of mouth-watering ties.  

Full draws

Women’s Premier League Semi Finals

Ulster University v UCC

NUI Galway v Maynooth University

Games to be played on Wednesday February 16.

Women’s Division One Quarter Finals

Queens University Belfast v UCC ‘B’

Trinity College Dublin v IT Sligo

TU Shannon-Midlands v UCD ‘B’

Bye-Munster TU-Cork

Games to be played on Wednesday February 2.

Women’s Division One Semi Finals

TU Shannon-Midlands or UCD ‘B’ v Munster TU-Cork 

Queen’s University Belfast or UCC ‘B’ v Trinity College Dublin or IT Sligo.

Games to be played on Tuesday February 15.

Women’s Kelly Cup North Section (Round One)

TU Dublin v DCU

Maynooth University v Letterkenny IT

UCD v Ulster University

Queen’s University Belfast v Trinity College Dublin

Games to be played on Wednesday February 9.

Women’s Kelly Cup

South Section (Round One)

NUI Galway v UCC

TU Shannon-Midlands v Waterford IT

University of Limerick v IT Carlow

Bye– Munster TU-Cork.

Games to be played on Wednesday February 9.

Women’s Lydon Cup

North Section (Round One)

TU Dublin-Tallaght v Maynooth University or Letterkenny IT

Maynooth University ‘B’ v UCD or Ulster University

IT Sligo v UCD ‘B’

TU Dublin or DCU v Queens University Belfast or Trinity College Dublin.

Games to be played on Wednesday February 23.

Women’s Lydon Cup

South Section (Round One)

UCC ‘B’ v GMIT Galway

TU Shannon-Midwest v TU Shannon-Midlands or Waterford IT

University of Limerick or IT Carlow v NUI Galway or UCC

Mary Immaculate College v Munster TU-Kerry

Games to be played on Wednesday February 23.

IMPORTANT NOTE

In the event that the distance between both teams is adjudged to be longer than 280kms then the fixture shall be played at a neutral venue decided by the committee.

The distance is adjudged between the main academic campuses of the two teams concerned instead of sports campuses or preferred sports facility venues.

Contact will be made with affected teams in the coming days to discuss this further.

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