Impasse continues over Unite the Union Champions Cup

The delayed Unite the Union Champions Cup seems no closer to being played as dates for the semi-finals are still to be confirmed.

By Steven Crawford
Friday, 18th March 2022, 10:56 am
Updated Friday, 18th March 2022, 10:58 am

Shamrock Rovers and St Patrick's Athletic had hoped to play their last four tie next week as both sides are currently inactive due to the international break.

But organisers are keen the semi-finals north and south of the border are aligned meaning the proposal from the Dublin sides with not go ahead.

The final was originally scheduled to be played in the Aviva Stadium on December 4th last year, but that plan hit the buffers with Rovers threatening to boycott the final due to a three-week gap between the end of their season and the final.

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Coleraine's Aaron Traynor and Linfield's Chris Shields at the launch of the Unite the Union Cup back in October

Plans for games to be played in January were also shelved as talks continue on how to start the competition.

Speaking on Thursday Rovers boss Stephen Bradley revealed his frustration that their tie with St Pats could not go ahead next week.

"That would be common sense, don't get me started on that," he said.

"Right now I wouldn't want the break, at the start of the season you like to get going and keep going, we find it helps us get into our stride as we find our level, it does make sense when you look at the mayhem it's caused over the last few years in terms of call ups and games being off, the backlog of games it caused, it does make sense in the bigger picture but I'd love us to keep playing so the Unite The Union Cup would have been great."

Coleraine are due to play Linfield in the northern leg of the semi-finals.

The Unite the Union 'Champions Cup' winners will pocket €60,000, the runners-up land €40,000 and there €25,000 for each of the beaten semi-finalists.