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Saturday 7 December 2019

Caramel and call-ups cause chaos

CALL-UP HOPE: Jack Byrne. Photo: SPORTSFILE
CALL-UP HOPE: Jack Byrne. Photo: SPORTSFILE

The FAI are facing fixture chaos for the quarter-finals of the FAI Cup next month.

The draw for the last eight saw the three highest-ranked clubs avoid each other, as holders Dundalk are away to Waterford, Shamrock Rovers travel to Galway United, and Bohemians were drawn away to Crumlin United, while Sligo Rovers are at home to UCD.

The quarter-final ties are due to be played on the weekend of September 6/7/8. But the tournament organisers could be faced with a fixture wipeout due to commitments in a Scottish Cup competition and international call-ups, so just one of the four ties may go ahead that weekend.

Two Irish clubs have entered the Tunnocks Caramel Wafer Challenge Cup (formerly the Irn-Bru Cup) and Bohemians have already confirmed that they will play away to Airdrie on Saturday September 7, while Waterford plan to play at home to Motherwell Colts on the Friday, so neither of the Crumlin-Bohs or Waterford-Dundalk FAI Cup ties can go ahead that weekend.

But Euro qualifiers for the Ireland U21 side could also hold things up in the Cup as Bohs expect to have three of their players called up.

Players from UCD, Sligo Rovers and Shamrock Rovers are also in the frame for the U21s, while Rovers man Jack Byrne hopes to make the senior squad.

If a club has two or more players called up, including for U21 duty, they can appeal to have their game called off, and if UCD duo Liam Scales and Conor Kearns are named in the U21 squad by Stephen Kenny tomorrow, that could also see their game in Sligo delayed.

Bohs are planning to play their tie away to Crumlin on Monday September 16.

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