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LOI players to have option of not playing

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Full-time players at leading clubs such as Dundalk and Shamrock Rovers are more enthusiastic than part-time performers. Photo: Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Full-time players at leading clubs such as Dundalk and Shamrock Rovers are more enthusiastic than part-time performers. Photo: Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

SPORTSFILE

Full-time players at leading clubs such as Dundalk and Shamrock Rovers are more enthusiastic than part-time performers. Photo: Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Discussions have taken place about allowing individual League of Ireland players to opt out of closed-door games should they have reservations if the idea gets the green light.

Clubs are split on further exploring a scenario geared towards a summer resumption, with the FAI set to provide an update today on the finances involved in the concept.

Senior FAI officials want league sides to see what support is available from FIFA before dismissing it as a financial non-runner, but that will not alleviate concerns around the management of testing and health measures to deal with the Covid-19 threat.

Player opinion on the possibility of a return to training later this month with a view to starting matches in July is mixed.

It's understood the majority are in favour of moves towards a comeback if it's safe but there are parallels with the broader club divide as full-time players at leading clubs such as Dundalk and Shamrock Rovers are more enthusiastic than part-time performers.

Union representatives have also been contacted by individuals who live with family members that are vulnerable to the disease and therefore do not want to return until there's a vaccine or more advanced medical knowledge.

It's anticipated that clubs could be asked to effectively put the contracts of these players on hold, meaning that they wouldn't be paid a football wage if they chose to sit it out while their team-mates returned - but would have the comfort of knowing they would be accepted back when ready.

Ireland still on track for Euros

The government has reconfirmed Ireland's commitment to hosting the rescheduled European Championships.

Dublin is one of the 12 host cities for the competition, which has been kicked back from 2020 to 2021 due to the Covid-19 crisis but Ministers Shane Ross and Brendan Griffin have asserted that economic difficulties will not impact on Ireland's stance.

UEFA had asked all governing authorities and member association to make their intentions clear by end of April and Minister Ross stressed they had responded positively.

"We have to plan for the future and happier times," Minister Ross said.