Ballymena Utd’s Tony Kane and Cliftonville’s Jaimie McGovern at the launch of the 2014 Charity Shield in association with the NI Hospice


class="MsoNormal">THE NI Football League Charity Shield will be resurrected this year after a 14 year absence and will be played in support of the Northern Ireland Hospice.

The game, which traditionally has been contested between the Premiership champions and Irish Cup winners sees Premiership champions Cliftonville facing Irish Cup runners-up Ballymena United at Solitude on Saturday 2 August (3pm Kick-off).  Irish Cup winners Glenavon were unable to play in the fixture due to prior commitments.

Andrew Johnston, NI Football League Managing Director, feels that the time is right to reintroduce the Charity Shield back into the football calendar. 

“It is 14 years since the Charity Shield was last played and I am delighted that we have been able to bring this fixture back.  We are proud to support the Northern Ireland Hospice by holding this game.  Cliftonville and Ballymena Utd will undoubtedly provide a fantastic match for fans to whet their appetite for local football ahead of the start of the league season on 9 August,” said Johnston.

NI Hospice is a local charity which, each year, cares for over 3000 adults and 300 children with life limiting and life ending conditions across Northern Ireland. Funds raised through the match will go towards supporting the building of a state of the art adult hospice facility at Somerton Road in North Belfast which is set to open in late 2015. A staggering £10.4 million has been raised to date through a combination of statutory, voluntary and philanthropic sources. A further £2.6 million needs to be raised to reach the £13 million price tag for the project,  which will provide the foundations for a legacy of hospice care for generations to come.

Northern Ireland Hospice Development Committee Member Sir Bruce Robinson:

"NI Hospice are delighted to be recognised as the official charity partner for the Northern Ireland Football League Charity Shield. The rejuvenation of this competition represents a great pre season day out for all the family and we look forward to being part of the day. The NI Hospice enjoys huge support across the entire community and this link with NIFL can only enhance that standing given the popularity of football here."

To view a CGI flythrough of the plans for the new state-of-the art adult Hospice facility visit

Ticket arrangements will be released shortly.

Tags:  Ballymena United  Cliftonville