League of Ireland


Big shock tonight, Rovers beating Dundalk up there. Throws it wide open. Cork have Dundalk at home in a few weeks. Is it head to head or goal difference, presume the latter? No fan of the place but know a couple of the Cork lads, wouldn’t mind them winning it again.


A friend of mine and former board member has done up a website outlining the financial performances of LOI club’s. Well worth a read for anyone with interest in the league and shows how difficult it it for clubs to operate in this environment


The biggest obstacle, as far as I can see, is fans not attending games. The move to a summer league has not, it seams, increased attendances sufficiently. There is clearly not enough of an appetite for a professional/semi-professional league in the country, for whatever reasons.


I got to see St Pats the odd time with my kids in Inchicore, pitch in good nick but the facilities are shocking. I know they want to build a new stadium which would make it more appealing for families to go but until then it is not very appealing. Have to say the brand of football was decent too, no hoofing of the ball from one end of the pitch to the other by either team.


The crowds we have currently are more than enough to sustain a sensible professional model like the one in the national league (old conference) in England once its funded correctly. For the majority of the clubs in ireland it actually costs money to compete such is the pitiful prize money and tye FAI thieving all tv money. This doesn’t happen anywhere else.


Sensible is the operative word. Many clubs aren’t.


Is that the yardstick by which we should be judging, though? Mind you, the facilities at National League stadiums (FIFTH tier) look far better (on TV, at least) than they do at LoIre stadiums. @MarysMan makes a valid point.


Why not? I have been to several games in that divison and the standard in the LOI is far superior, some of our facilities are superior, some of our crowds are larger, and yet the teams can afford to spend bigger on their teams. There are some exceptions. The racecourse in Wrexham for example is a fantastic little stadium and above anything we have here but there are some dumps too that would make the Carlisle grounds look like the Ritz


That’s why it’s not the best comparison. The standard of football in L of Ire IS higher than what you’d see in the National League yet not enough people in Ireland will not go and watch it - facilities being a big part of that.


I accept the facilities should be better but worse facilities across the water are getting far better attendances. Plus look at when Limerick were in Thomand Park. I was at a league match down there where the 300 Bohs fans that travelled down outnumbered the home fans. The build it and they will come mantra is a bit of a myth and a lazy one. Unless we’re playing rovers we’ve 1k empty seats in the Jodi stand which is a fantastic facility. Comfortable seating, great atnosphere in blocks f and g, quality hot food with Pieman and then theres the usual burger sausage and chip van, 3 bars under the stand, toilets (not great but still somewhere you can go and wash up after) not sure what else people are looking for in terms of facility. Whats needed is more funding and marketing from the FAI, access to our tv money, and above all else a change in the Irish psyche cause when all is said and done the Irish public just arent football fans. People need to understand there’s different between been a football fan and a fan of football. Sitting on your couch or in a pub watching football does not make you a football fan despite how many Liverpool or Man U jersies you have and how loud you roar at a screen


The reality is Irish people are just not interested in Irish soccer and are expert at coming up with excuses as to why they can’t attend LOI games and I say that as a person who is a member of Bohs and has been attending games for 45 years. In general we are a nation of even junkies. Sad but that’s the reality.


I agree with you on all fronts.
As I said, I am not so sure the appetite is there among “fans”.
Thank God for the GAA and the sense of belonging and identity.


100 percent. Nail on the head


The exact same sense of belonging is there in the LOI. Bohs is run exactly the same as a GAA club. Members owned, volunteer run. Exact same principle. Nobody takes a wage. Everyone gives up their own free time to run the club, coach kids etc


I didn’t mean that as a swipe against Bohs or any other club. Maybe the GAA doesn’t have to compete with a “higher level” within its own sport the way the L of Ire has to compete with The Champions’ League, EPL, etc.


LOI is probably the best attended club sport in Ireland. I can’t think of any club teams that get better support which says it all about Irish people. When you look at countries with similar population e.g. Scotland/Croatia they get much better crowds. Dublin/Leinster etc. aren’t club level


The Premiership would disagree as long as you are coughing up for Sky Sports.

Interestingly enough, that’s the same model in America for the NFL. Many football fans have never been to a NFL game but only watch on TV while living thousands of miles away from “their” team. Not sure if there is a connection but the huge TV support for NFL doesn’t mean that there is any sort of football played after high school, only the elite play in college or professional. While the NFL is arguably the most profitable league in sports, it has killed the sport itself.


Yeah i know what you mean was just saying thats how it is for LOI fans. I like Leeds, everyone in my family does cause my grandad grew up and hung around with Johnny Giles so my father all my uncles and cousins all regularly travel to watch Leeds, 3 or 4 times a year. But i don’t really consider myself a Leeds fan as such.

I had this conversation with a work collegue before when i tried to convince him to come to a Bohs Rovers game. He couldn’t understand when i was describing the passion and atmosphere and that it would be nothing like he’d ever felt in all his years supporting Man U. He asked me what would i rather Leeds to return to the premier league or Bohs to beat Rovers in a one off game. I told him I’d rather see Bohs win a corner at home to UCD than see Leeds get promoted. But the majority of Irish people will never understand that


My mate returned to Bohs 4yrs ago after not attending for previous 20 yrs. He had a season ticket for Man Utd in the Strefford End but after we beat rovers he said he never got the feeling he felt that night in 35 yrs of watching Utd. He ditched his Man U season ticket for a Bohs membership 3 yrs ago and got rid of Sky Sports :grin:

Same as you I’d rather Bohs win a league than Ireland win a W.C. no brainer for me


This is well worth a watch for anyone who hasn’t seen it yet. Copa90 go all over the world watching matches and derbies. Eli ha been to old firms, Manchester derbies, Belgrade derbies, matches in South America and says here he experienced his most exhilarating moment at Bohs Rovers. He couldn’t understand the Irish peoples refusal to embrace their national league and ended up signing up to the Gypsies Supporters Trust he was that impressed