Club update ahead of new season

As we approach the beginning of the new season for our men’s team and the women’s team next month, the club would like to issue an update to all of our supporters.

We are pleased that our fans are excited by the hard work and diligent recruitment by John Russell and Tommy Hewitt in recent months.

As a committee our responsibility remains the day-to-day running of the club, to future proof it and build on over 90 years of our proud existence.

Today’s announcement of a new three-year sponsorship agreement with Avant Money is arguably the most important in the history of our club.

Our thanks to Niall Corbett and all of the team at Avant Money can not be understated as their understanding of Sligo Rovers and what it means to the community has made it possible.

It also reflects the growing appeal as one of just two-member owned teams in the top flight.

In an environment where €2 million is the cost of running a Premier Division side and most clubs within the league finance it through billionaire or millionaire investment, we must stress the future will be challenging and requires the expansion of the football club.

Our goal is to have teams that do justice to the proud history of Sligo Rovers. We make an even stronger case for government support on our Masterplan, which we’ll touch on shortly, if, despite the obstacles we have to overcome, we remain a bastion of soccer on the island.

This season we will ask our supporters to help a number of initiatives, geared to keep the side competitive. We will aim to be united on all fronts.

The first of those initiatives is a proposal to create a special night with a packed Showgrounds for the opening home game against Derry City.

Below are the details and following that is an update on the club’s Masterplan.

Attendance for Derry City game

Tickets are available to purchase for the Derry City game now

Sligo Rovers v Derry City, the North West derby on Saturday February 24th, is our first game of the 2024 season.

We have been extremely pleased with the level of season ticket sales and we thank for the loyal support. As you enter the ground for the game you’ll see marked improvements in the stadium including new floodlights which will make a marked difference in your match-watching experience.

Through the help of the Bit O’ Red Supporters Trust there is also an expanded merchandise unit.

With season tickets, individual match tickets already sold and the away allocation for Derry City, we are already approaching 2,500 tickets gone for the game.

We are encouraging all of our community to be part of the special occasion and ask to purchase your tickets in advance of the game.

Having sold out the away allocation for Dalymount Park on Friday five days out, we know our supporters are excited to see our young and hungry side ready to represent the Bit O’ Red.

Last year’s opening fixture topped 4,000 spectators in The Showgrounds. We will be building to the game on our social media channels and local media as we feel it can be a similar occasion.

It is vital we start the season with a large and passionate crowd supporting our team and financially in revenue on the night so please encourage friends and family to be part of the great occasion.

Tickets are available here Match Tickets ( and we will update you throughout next week. Our rates for 2024 for all 18 home games will be €20 for adults, €12 concession and €5 adults.

Update on Masterplan

Some of the new floodlights installed for 2024

As mentioned substantial work has been carried out in the grounds of phase 1 of the Masterplan with the addition of new floodlights, coming from a grant of over €200,000 from the current government as well as significant spending by the club on this project.

The Showgrounds has been the home of Sligo Rovers since the club was founded in 1928.

Sligo Football and Sports Development Society (SFSDS) is a co-operative society, wholly owned by the people.

In 2021, as part of the preparations for the Sligo Rovers in 2028, the club carried out a widespread consultation process. The resultant Masterplan sets out how the club and the Showgrounds might serve future generations.

Statutory Planning Approval for the development, in accordance with the Masterplan, was sought from Sligo County Council and secured in February 2023.

The club will apply for large scale funding

In advance of the new season, the information below provides the latest information about the next phase of the plan.

Following a public procurement process in accordance with the EU rules, an experienced multi-disciplinary design team was appointed in November 2023. The detailed design and costing of the proposed facilities is underway.

The Integrated Design Team comprises the following professionals:
• Rhatigan and Company, Architects (Architect, Assigned Certifier and Employer Representative)
• Atkins Ireland (Civil and Structural Engineers)
• Patrick McCaul (Mechanical and Electrical Engineers)
• ORS (Fire Safety Engineers and PSDP)
• CQS Group (Quantity Surveyors)

Sligo Rovers lodged an application for funding under the IIP scheme last year. It is due to be evaluated during 2024. Westport United FC, Dublin GAA, Monaghan GAA, Connacht Rugby and DCU are among the organisations who have received support under this scheme.

The Department of Sport has indicated it will shortly invite applications for a new round of the Large Scale Sport Infrastructure Fund (LSSIF). Sligo Rovers will lodge an application for support. It is expected that allocations from this fund will be made during the lifetime of this government. Earlier work carried out, including receiving planning permission and the appointment of a Design Team, leave Sligo Rovers in contention to benefit from substantial LSSIF funding.

The club is grateful for the ongoing support it is receiving from the local authority, Sligo County Council, the FAI and national and local public representatives in relation to the Masterplan.

We are conscious of the club’s rich history. We hope that the required level of state funding will be provided to allow Sligo Rovers serve the needs of future generations and continue its role as a valued ambassador for the League of Ireland in the regions.

New Role in the Community

We are currently recruiting a Football & Social Responsibility (FSR) Officer who will be responsible for delivery of a Football Community Engagement Strategy for the Club.

The Full Time role will involve the development and implementation of the Club’s social responsibility policy and procedures using football as the mechanism to have a positive and sustainable impact on the community in the region.

The role is supported through and by Sligo County Council and we look forward to an announcement when the process is complete.

We expect to provide further supporter information about specific changes made during the preseason in the lead up to the first home game v Derry City.