Monaghan United's home ground at Gortakeegan. Photo: Sportsfile
The 2022/23 Ulster Senior League will have only five teams following the withdrawal of Monaghan United, Donegal Live has learned.
Monaghan United are understood to have communicated their decision to cease their involvement after just one season.
Last summer, their arrival gave the embattled USL a new lease of life and Monaghan were League Cup finalists in May, losing 3-2 to Bonagee United.
Fading numbers had raised fears about the League’s continuation until Monaghan’s entry and questions marks will surface again.
Bonagee United, Cockhill Celtic, Derry City Reserves, Finn Harps Under-21s and Letterkenny Rovers will form the USL this season.
The new campaign gets underway on Saturday afternoon when Letterkenny Rovers host Bonagee United in a Donegal News USL League Cup game at Leckview Park (5pm).
The League Cup will have a group of just four teams with Derry City not participating in that competition.
At the recent AGM, secretary Niall Callaghan noted how the executive had made their concerns about the viability of the USL known to the FAI as far back as February, 2015.
“Nothing has changed,” Callaghan told delegates. “We have made it known that we are constantly putting out fires.”
The outgoing Chairman, Johnny McCafferty, highlighted his concerns for the immediate future.
McCafferty questioned the ‘motivation of the powers that be in the FAI.’
He said: “Is there a commitment to fully implement intermediate football in the provinces? We have already lost Connacht and at the minute we are on shaky ground there in Ulster.”
Subscribe or register today to discover more from DonegalLive.ie
Buy the e-paper of the Donegal Democrat, Donegal People's Press, Donegal Post and Inish Times here for instant access to Donegal's premier news titles.
Keep up with the latest news from Donegal with our daily newsletter featuring the most important stories of the day delivered to your inbox every evening at 5pm.