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    Dinny Lowry Cian's Avatar
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    Fan's Forum

    I was asked to spread the word on this, I mentioned in on here before I think and there was a piece about it in the programme on Tuesday.
    Basically its a bit of an initiative to get LOI fans talking and discussing how best the game can be improved and to try get fans a better voice in the running of their clubs and the league as a whole.

    Nobody would question that this has been a difficult year for Irish domestic football. Monaghan United’s mid-season withdrawal from the Premier Division and Dundalk’s financial struggles cast a significant shadow over the League.



    However, there are also encouraging signs that fans are stepping up to meet these challenges. Dundalk will enjoy top level football next year, in no small part to the efforts of the fans in rallying the community around the club.



    Out west, the traditions of Galway United are now represented on the field once more - thanks to the Galway United Supporters Trust (GUST), who have entered a team in this year’s under-19 league.



    Fans continue to play a vital role at all clubs, from fundraising to tearing tickets and there are some exciting initiatives to ensure fans efforts are both recognised and are heard at the very highest levels of the game.



    A unified voice for League of Ireland fans is something many feel has been lacking for some time and the LOI Fans Forum is now holding events across the country to bring supporters together.



    The Forum is organised by a number of fans that attended an open meeting in July, shortly after the withdrawal of Monaghan from the League, to discuss the state of League of Ireland football. With support from Supporters Direct and the Supporters’ Trust movement in Ireland, the aim of the meetings is to:



    - Allow fans to discuss issues that affect both them as stakeholders in the game as well as their clubs.

    - Assemble a national Supporters’ Charter, which will outline to all stakeholders what fans are committed to.

    - Discuss the future of fans representation in Ireland with a view towards building a united voice for fans, if the desire is there to do so.



    There are events all over the country with details as follows:



    North-West: Glasshouse Hotel. Sligo Town, 29th of September 4:30PM

    East: Teachers’ Club, Parnell Street, Dublin 6th of October, 2.30PM.

    West and Mid-West: Claddagh Hall, Galway City, Thursday the 11th of October, 8PM

    North East: Lilywhite Lounge, Oriel Park, Dundalk, Thursday the 18th of October, 8.30PM

    South: Venue TBC. Charleville, Co. Cork



    www.facebook.com/loifansforum or by emailing loifanforum@gmail.com.



    These events will culminate in a Fans Weekend, which will take place on the 10th/11th of November in Cork and will be hosted in conjunction with the EC-funded ‘Improving Football Governance’ project being led in Ireland by FORAS. The weekend will provide a platform for fans to discuss the outcomes of the forum and feature debates on football at home and abroad with the help of some guest speakers and panel discussions. Details of speakers will be confirmed soon.

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