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Saturday 1 October 2016

'Fixture switches will hurt us' says Bohs boss

Bohemians boss Keith Long. Pic: Sportsfile
Bohemians boss Keith Long. Pic: Sportsfile

Bohemians boss Keith Long has added his voice to the complaints about how the League of Ireland fixture list is arranged to suit European games as he fears his club will be hit in the pocket.

The Gypsies were due to play at home to Wexford Youths tonight but when tonight's proposed Dundalk-Cork City tie was called off due to international call-ups, it was decided to play the Bohs-Wexford game at a later date and slot in a home tie for Bohs with Dundalk, listed for October, tonight to help out Dundalk in their clogged fixture list.

The outcome is Wexford having no fixture tonight and they instead have to play away to Bohs on a Monday, not ideal for fans or players, while Bohs now have just one home game in October, with a knock-on effect on their income.

Finn Harps have already complained about having their clash with Cork City changed, twice, and clubs are now asking the FAI to look at other options, such as dropping the mid-season break, or make sides competing in Europe play each other during the scheduled summer break.

"You want to accommodate teams playing in Europe but it's obviously not ideal. It's not going to be ideal having just one home game in the final month of the season either," says Long ahead of the Dundalk tie.

"Dundalk were due to be our last home game of the season, you'd have expected a big crowd for that. That's disappointing and costly for the club. But as a team, we just have to get on with it. We've had to change tack given the change of opposition, but we can bring the game to Dundalk, who are the benchmark everyone has to aspire to."

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