Football's comin' home — compromise reached as Galway FC applies to league

Galway FC should be ready for Eamonn Deacy Park action in 2014 as the newly formed club will make a licence application to play in the Airtricity League next season.

Compromise has been reached with all the stakeholders in the west as Galway United Supporters Trust, Mervue United, Galway FA, and Salthill Devon are all represented on the Board of Directors of Galway FC.

Following several months of meetings and debate Galway FC has been established with a statement released last night confirming the news. “The dream of one city, one county, and one club is set to be realised with the coming together of a Galway football partnership representative of all local soccer interests.”

The Directors of Galway FC include Tom Lally and John Flannery ( representing GUST ), Joe Keating and Declan Mooney (Galway FA ), Donnie Farragher and Declan McDonnell (Mervue United ), and Jim McSpadden and Ollie Daniels (Salthill Devon ) with Bernie O'Connell acting as the independent Chairperson. John Flannery will serve as Secretary, while Declan McDonnell, a former Mayor of Galway, will be the Treasurer.

A launch of Galway FC is expected to take place in the coming weeks, while several sub committees will be formed by those interested. “The new club has emanated from the Ned O' Connor Report 2012 and all of the stakeholders in the Galway game take two seats on the new Board which also includes an independent chairperson,” the statement continued.

“The new club looks forward to the creation of a sustainable, dynamic football entity that will bring back League of Ireland football to Eamonn Deacy Park and considerably enhance the rich fabric of Galway’s sporting life.

“A formal launch of Galway FC will take place in the coming weeks alongside a series of information meetings set to be conducted around the city and county. The club will form a range of sub-committees to facilitate all aspects of GFC's growth and development.”

There had been some worry that GUST might pull out of this proposed new venture a fortnight ago, but they are believed to be satisfied with the direction the new club is now taking.

The Galway FC statement also revealed that the possibility of a cooperative ownership structure is being examined. “The club has already founded a sub-committee charged with the task of examining how a cooperative structure can be formed whereby members can be elected to the Board at the end of the 2014 football season.”

A valuable three year sponsorship deal for Galway FC is on the verge of being completed with talks currently at an advanced stage.

For the first time since 2008 Galway, if the licence application is successful, will have only one team in the Airtricity League.

The managerial position of Galway FC will be advertised shortly with Mervue boss Johnny Glynn and Don O'Riordan among those being mentioned as two potential candidates.

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