08 Feb 2023

The NI Football League can reveal a positive new change to the post-split schedule for this season.

A revision of the traditional post-split fixture sequence was approved by the NIFL Competitions Committee and will see the biggest games now take centre stage at the business end of the Irish League campaign.

The most notable change to the fixture schedule will see the top two placed clubs in the Premiership face-off on the penultimate round of the league season, as opposed to previously being the first fixture played following the ‘split’.

NI Football League Chief Executive Gerard Lawlor said, “We are always reviewing ways that we can improve and enhance the league, and it was clear to us that, by moving the top two fixture from matchday 34 to matchday 37, it has the potential to provide a much greater climax to the season and increase interest in the League and competing clubs.

“The league provides so much excitement and drama and we want to ensure that our biggest games are given the best slots in the football calendar.”

The Danske Bank Premiership completes the regular season round of fixtures after each team has played 33 matches and breaks into two sections based on rankings at that point. The popular ‘split’ scenario allows the clubs to compete amongst their peers for the final five matches to determine the outcome of the Gibson Cup, European qualification and survival from relegation.

The newly agreed post-split sequence will be applied to the top three men’s divisions; the Danske Bank Premiership, the Lough 41 Championship and Lough 41 Premier Intermediate League with immediate effect.

Revised post split sequence

  • Matchday 34 – (Section A) 1st vs 5th, 2nd vs 4th, 3rd vs 6th; (Section B) 7th vs 11th, 8th vs 10th, 9th vs 12th
  • Matchday 35 – (Section A) 1st vs 3rd, 2nd vs 5th, 4th vs 6th; (Section B) 7th vs 9th, 8th vs 11th, 10th vs 12th
  • Matchday 36 – (Section A) 1st vs 4th, 2nd vs 6th, 3rd vs 5th; (Section B) 7th vs 10th, 8th vs 12th, 9th vs 11th
  • Matchday 37 – (Section A) 1st vs 2nd, 3rd vs 4th, 5th vs 6th; (Section B) 7th vs 8th, 9th vs 10th, 11th vs 12th
  • Matchday 38 – (Section A) 1st vs 6th, 2nd vs 3rd, 4th vs 5th; (Section B) 7th vs 12th, 8th vs 9th, 10th vs 11th