7 February 2024
~5 minutes read
League of Ireland and SSE Airtricity announce rise in prize money ahead of 2024 season
The League of Ireland and SSE Airtricity have announced a rise in the overall prize money for the League of Ireland by €110,000, equating to 17%, ahead of the new 2024 season
The new League of Ireland season was launched today as SSE Airtricity Men’s Premier Division Champions Shamrock Rovers look to begin their title defence, and on the back of SSE Airtricity’s sponsorship extension in late 2023 coupled with their further support of TV broadcasts, the overall prize money for the League of Ireland’s three Divisions has risen 17% from €655,000 to €765,000.
As Peamount United get set to defend their crown, the League of Ireland and principal partners SSE Airtricity’s announcement today includes the doubling of funding for the SSE Airtricity Women’s Premier Division prize money in 2024 ahead of the new season.
With the new season event held today at Vicar Street in Dublin, the prize money for the SSE Airtricity Women’s Premier Division will rise from €55,000 in 2023 to €110,000 in 2024 after increasing from €20,000 in 2021.
The new campaign looks set to be another thrilling year across the League of Ireland with several exciting clashes on the opening night such as Galway United welcoming St. Patrick’s Athletic at Eamonn Deacy Park on Friday, 16 February while Cork City host Kerry for the first time ever on the same night and Shamrock Rovers take on Dundalk live on RTÉ2 from Tallaght Stadium.
Sports Direct Men’s FAI Cup winners St. Patrick’s Athletic and last season’s SSE Airtricity Men’s Premier Division runners-up Derry City aim to dethrone Stephen Bradley’s men while challengers like Shelbourne, Dundalk and Bohemians continue to strengthen to increase pressure on the Hoops.
The top flight will see Galway United and Waterford return to the SSE Airtricity Men’s Premier Division where the rise in attendances at both Clubs in recent years looks set to grow even further back in the country’s top Division.
Season Ticket sales have grown once more across the country as several Clubs have reported record-breaking sales for their season offerings.
The SSE Airtricity Women’s Premier Division title race should be another enthralling journey too as defending Champions Peamount United look to regain their crown against the likes of Shelbourne, Shamrock Rovers and Athlone Town who will be expecting a twist at this year’s title.
With an increased dedicated pot of funding for the prize money, 2024 promises to be the biggest year yet for the SSE Airtricity Women’s Premier Division.
There’s a Munster focus too in the SSE Airtricity Men’s First Division this year as Cork City aim to gain immediate promotion back to the SSE Airtricity Men’s Premier Division with Cobh Ramblers, Kerry and Treaty United all bringing attention from Munster to the Division this year.
The new season comes with an increase in television broadcasts as an extra seven live broadcasts on Virgin Media TV brings the total number of games broadcast live on free to air TV across RTÉ, Virgin Media TV and TG4 to 48 including twelve games in the SSE Airtricity Women’s Premier Division on TG4.
Over 450 live League of Ireland games will be broadcast across the three Divisions on LOITV and will also be available with the season pass on sale for €120 on loitv.ie.
SSE Airtricity will also continue to invest in the partnership with a range of programmes focusing on promoting sustainability, inclusion and diversity, and supporting League of Ireland players off the pitch with personal and professional development opportunities.
The SSE Airtricity Men’s First Division season starts on Friday, 16 February and the SSE Airtricity Women’s Premier Division will begin on Saturday, 9 March with the fixtures available at www.leagueofireland.ie.
League of Ireland, Director, Mark Scanlon said: “We’re very excited to see the prize money in the League of Ireland rise this year with thanks to SSE Airtricity’s continued support. It’s also great to see the prize money for the SSE Airtricity Women’s Premier Division double this year thanks to this brilliant partnership. Our relationship with SSE Airtricity continues to grow year-on-year and this news is a sign of our commitment to growing the men’s and women’s game in Ireland. We’re really looking forward to a thrilling season across all three Divisions this year and it’s great that we will reach an even bigger audience this season with an increase in TV coverage. This rising audience should see an exciting title race in all three Divisions with brilliant story lines around the country that will help our fan base grow even further in 2024.”
Speaking about the announcement, Ashley Morrow, SSE Airtricity Head of Brand, Advertising and Sponsorship, said: “We’re delighted to be supporting the League of Ireland for our 15th season together. Football is enjoyed by so many across the country and we know the success of the League is because of the people involved – whether that be the fans, players, volunteers or officials. We’re proud to support all three divisions and will continue to invest in driving football forward. With the FAI, we’ll be working together to enhance the experience for players on and off the pitch, while partnering with football clubs across the country on their sustainability journey. Like you, we’re excited for the return of the League – here’s to an even bigger and better season ahead!”