NIFL Premiership

The IFA Premiership or Carling Premiership - formerly the Irish Premier League, Irish Football League and the Irish League known - is the highest league in the Northern Ireland football. It is not to be confused with the League of Ireland, the top division of the Republic of Ireland. The IFA Premiership is the second- oldest national league in the world. It was created one week before the Scottish Football League. Only the English Football League is older.


The League was founded in 1890 as the all-Ireland League. However, most members came from the later Northern Ireland. The Irish division in 1921, became the only Northern Irish league. In 2003, the Irish Football Association's control over the highest division and renamed it to Irish Premier League ( IPL). A year later they also took over the management of the other two leagues and renamed it to IFA Intermediate First and Second Division. The Irish Premier League comprised between 2003 and 2008 as the Irish Premier League 16 teams, while the IFA Intermediate First and Second Division included 12 teams each.

Reorganization of the League

With the beginning of the season 2008/ 09, the Northern Irish league system was reorganized again. The former Irish Premier League was renamed the Premiership in the course of which in IFA and reduced from 16 to 12 teams. The decision on the applications for participation in the IFA Premiership, which started the game operation in August 2008, on 13 May 2008 made ​​by the IFA Executive Committee on the basis of a point system in which multiple factors of the individual associations were taken into account (eg sporting success, finance, infrastructure ). In addition to Armagh City ( relegated ) and the Larne FC, ​​who had waived a message for the IFA Premiership, the previous Premier League clubs Portadown, Donegal Celtic and Limavady United were then not allowed to participate in the major league.

While Limavady United had been denied eligibility to play for the IFA Premiership before the decision of the IFA License Committee, the application Porta Downs for inclusion in the new league the House of Lords was refused due to late submission. Donegal Celtic FC, ​​however, missed the part in the IFA Premiership due to the low number of points after the selection system described above. The objections of the clubs concerned against the decision of the IFA License Committee, however, were rejected by the IFA Appeals Chamber in the sequence.

However, the recent League reform also affected the two subordinate divisions. The previous Intermediate First Division was then as IFA Championship with the start of the season 2008/ 09 first increased to 17 clubs, a year later under the new name " IFA Championship 1 " but again reduced to a total of 14 clubs. The previous Intermediate Second Division, however, included under the name IFA Interim League unchanged for 12 clubs, was then but with the start of the 2009/10 season - now as " IFA Championship 2 " - extended to 15 clubs.

Contrary to initial reports, which should be promotion and relegation between the leagues mode suspended for the first two years of the new league format, are now planned ascents and descents between the leagues from the start. A binding rule for the ascents and descents in and out of the IFA Premiership, which as well as a Play-Off mode provides both a direct ascent or descent - between the second last of the IFA Premiership and IFA Championship the runner-up, was of the IFA established on 17 June 2008.

Game Mode

A season in the IFA Premiership includes the start of the 2008/09 season is now 38 game days instead of 30 game days. Here is the league after Matchday 33 in various playgroups, a master round and relegation round, split, which includes each of the six teams from the upper or the lower half of the table. According to this game mode, which is modeled on the game system of the Scottish Premier League, each club in the remaining game days occurs once each against the other five teams from the same playgroup. The final standings will be calculated separately for the end of the season, depending on the half of the table, so that there is no overlap with the other group game more. Thus, at the end of the season as the seventh- place finisher more points than the sixth- place finisher.

Members in the 2012/13 season

In the 2012/13 season, the following teams will play for the Northern Ireland Championship:

  • Ballinamallard United
  • Ballymena United
  • Cliftonville FC
  • Coleraine FC
  • Crusaders FC
  • Donegal Celtic
  • Dungannon Swifts
  • Glenavon FC
  • Glentoran FC
  • Linfield FC
  • Lisburn Distillery
  • Portadown FC

Previous champions

Record champions

The previous 112 championships distributed as follows twelve clubs:


  • Since 1891: Linfield ( 1-51 )

UEFA five year ranking

Position in the UEFA five year ranking (in brackets the previous year placement). The abbreviation CL and EL countries behind the coefficients indicate the number of representatives in the 2014/15 season of the Champions League and the Europa League.

  • 45 (43 ) Liechtenstein Liechtenstein (Cup ) - coefficient: 3,500 - CL: 0 EL: 1
  • 46 (49 ) Luxembourg Luxembourg (league, cup ) - coefficient: 3.375 - CL: 1, EL: 3
  • 47 (48 ) Northern Ireland Northern Ireland (league, cup ) - coefficient: 3.083 - CL: 1, EL: 3
  • 48 (46 ) Wales Wales (league, cup ) - coefficient: 2.583 - CL: 1, EL: 3
  • 49 (47 ) Estonia (league, cup ) - coefficient: 2.208 - CL: 1, EL: 3

As of the end of the European campaign of 2012/13