Four League of Ireland teams have begun to test players as part of the pilot programme and tournament for the Airtricity League teams who will compete in Europe this coming year.
RTE report that Dundalk, Shamrock Rovers, Derry City and Bohemians players were tested on Monday morning as the sides prepare to make a return to training in phase 2 on June 8th.It is expected the results of these tests will confirmed at end of the week. We reported earlier this month that the mini league as such will take place later this summer, while the remaining League of Ireland clubs will return to training in June.
Speaking about the testing Ireland and Shamrock Rovers midfielder Jack Byrne told FAI TV, “The test was fine. We just got a little swab taken at the back of our throats and it was all done in less than 20 seconds. We’re happy to get it done as it’s another step closer to training soon”. Byrne said it would be important to get everyone in the country back playing football. He said, “Football is such a huge part of this country and we need to take these steps for football to return, from the league to the grassroots. I can’t wait to return and get back to playing football.”
The FAI have said that a safe return to football will happen when state agencies and government say so. Alan Byrne, medical director at the FAI said, “Today is a significant day as we plot our return for all football in Ireland in a safe environment for players, staff, officials and volunteers. Mr Byrne continued, “We will test the players from these four clubs again before they return to training on 8 June and then again regularly when they are back on the training field”.