The Football Association of Ireland has announced an extension to the cessation order for all football activities under its jurisdiction until May 5th inclusive.

It follows on from directives issued by the government and the Department of Health this afternoon.

“The decision to extend the deadline for the return to football has been taken in light of the Covid-19 pandemic and in the best interests of our players, coaches, volunteers, supporters and staff. This decision will continue to be monitored on an ongoing basis,” said the FAI in a statement that followed the announcement.

The FAI will remain in communication with the Department of Health and UEFA on Covid-19, and will continue to follow all government guidelines.

The statement continued: “The Association advises all members, volunteers and stakeholders to respect the HSE guidelines on social distancing during this pandemic. We also appeal to everyone involved with Irish football to stay at home over the Easter weekend.”

FAI medical director Dr. Alan Byrne has reiterated his advice to the FAI that in the current exceptional circumstances, clubs should not engage in collective training during the cessation period. That goes for all football activity under the FAI’s jurisdiction.