Shamrock Rovers ‘B’ are set to return back to the first division. They will replace Limerick FC who can no longer function under crippling debts.

This now paves the way fixtures to be allocated three weeks after the premier division’s were issued.

First division clubs are known to be unhappy with the announcement with a first division alliance formed recently and a statement put out to suggest their preference to a 9 club division.

“Many of our teams have long and rich histories in the League of Ireland,” the statement read. “We strive to be stronger as clubs and we all aim to get to the Premier League.

“A number of Ireland’s most successful clubs, such as Dundalk and Shamrock Rovers, have had their time in the First Division and have recovered to build strong clubs.

Our stance protects all clubs, as no club is immune from relegation. The current First Division clubs are not here to help Premier League clubs develop their players at First Division clubs’ expense.”