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Posted 08 May 2015

UCD AFC awarded place in next season's UEFA Europa League

UCD AFC can look forward to playing Europa League football next season after the club was awarded a place in the qualifying rounds of the competition on the back of Ireland’s third place finish in the UEFA Fair Play table.

It would mark UCD’s first European appearance since they played in the 2000 InterToto Cup. Luck was not on their side that year when they cruelly went out on away goals in the first round.

UCD defender Mick Leahy is looking forward to the journey. “We’re delighted to be involved in Europe this season. It’ll be the majority of the squad’s first experience of playing in the Europa League and should greatly aid the development of our young players. It’s also a great boost for the club financially. We’ll be eagerly awaiting the draw next month, hoping for one of the big clubs like West Ham!”

Ireland was the final federation to be rewarded for their good discipline with the Netherlands and England taking first and second place. All three will now gain an additional spot in next year’s competition.

Despite beginning this season in the First Division, UCD gained their place due to St Patrick’s Athletic and Dundalk — both of whom finished above UCD in the Irish Fair Play league — having already qualified for European competition.

According to UEFA, “The fair play assessments are made by the official UEFA delegates on criteria such as positive play, respect of the opponent, respect of the referee, behaviour of the crowd and of the team officials, as well as cautions and dismissals.”


(Produced by UCD University Relations)


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UCD AFC awarded place in next season's UEFA Europa League
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