Muirhevna Mor celebrate winning the Tully Bookmakers' Challenge Cup two years ago. (Pic: Gerry Shanahan)
Five local clubs, including Dundalk neighbours Muirhevna Mor and Bay FC, have been paired in Group A of the North-East Football League’s revised season programme, as confirmed by fixtures’ secretary Gerry Gorman on Tuesday night.
The altered format involves all 2020 Premier Division, Division One and Division Two clubs and sees teams allocated to four groups of eight depending on both their league status and regional situation.
Therefore, after playing their seven pool games, the top two in each division will progress to the quarter-finals of the Tully Bookmakers Challenge Cup, the third and fourth placed sides have the Kilmessan Shield to play for, while teams ranked five and six join the others in the hunt for Fitzsimons Cup glory.
The bottom pair from each group will drop into competition involving Division Three and Four opponents, who will play their preliminary stages in similar pots containing reserve teams from the higher ranking clubs.
Action is expected to begin on the weekend of August 10, with games continuing until November and into December, if deemed necessary.
Group A: Muirhevna Mor, Bay FC, Bellurgan Utd, Albion Rovers, Ardee Celtic, Torro Utd, Glenmuir Utd, Abbey Celtic.
Group B: Rock Celtic, Carrick Rovers, Square Utd, Kingscourt Harps, Redeemer Celtic, Drogheda Town, Bailieboro Celtic, Newtown Utd.
Group C: Parkvilla, Duleek, OMP Utd, Chord Celtic, Kentstown Rovers, Oldcastle Utd, Trim Celtic 2nds Kells Celtic.
Group D: Boyne Harps, Trim Celtic, Athboy Celtic, Enfield Celtic, Donacarney Celtic, Johnstown, Trim Town, Virginia FC.
Group E: BJD Celtic, Navan Town Cosmos, Ardee Celtic 2nds, Glenmuir Utd 2nds, Virginia 2nds, Athboy 2nds, Electro 2nds, Oldcastle 2nds.
Group F: Fordrew Rovers, Torro 2nds, Carrick 2nds, Square 2nds, Newtown 2nds, Slane Wdrs, Kells Celtic 2nds, Castle Villa, Robinstown 2nds.
Group G: Bohermeen Celtic, Kilmessan, Kentstown 2nds, Millmount Celtic, Donacarney 2nds, Albion 2nds, Rossin Rovers, Park Celtic Summerhill.
Group H: OMP 2nds, Parkvilla 2nds, Robinstown, Chord Celtic 2nds, Lourdes Celtic, Albion 3rds, Johnstown 2nds, Enfield 2nds.