Football in Wales set to go ahead on day of King’s coronation
Phil Blanche, PA
Football in Wales is set to go ahead on the day of the King’s coronation on May 6.
The Football Association of Wales cancelled all fixtures on the weekend following the death of the Queen in September, receiving criticism in particular for the decision to prevent children from playing by postponing youth-team matches.
But there will be no repeat when Charles is crowned at Westminster Abbey, with the JD Cymru Premier play-offs to determine European qualification among the fixtures due to take place in Wales that day.
FAW chief executive Noel Mooney, addressing the cancellation of fixtures in September, said: “The Queen’s death was a really historical event.
“The cancellation of matches divided some people here.
“A lot of people felt we should have done two minutes silence at the matches. Some people felt we went too far in cancelling everything.
“There was a feeling here we had time in the calendar that we could give that respect.
“But it’s very unlikely we will cancel matches in May (for the King’s coronation).”
The Football Association of Wales and Welsh Rugby Union had postponed all matches the weekend after the Queen’s death.
They joined the Premier League, EFL and National League who had already postponed all fixtures in English leagues. England’s RFU however confirmed that matches would be going ahead.
The FAW said in a statement at the time: “The Football Association of Wales can confirm that this weekend’s fixtures (9-12 September) at all levels of the game will be postponed as a mark of respect following the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
“Further updates on fixtures scheduled to take place during the period of mourning will be provided in due course.”
The WRU said: “The Welsh Rugby Union is suspending all senior rugby matches in Wales this weekend as a mark of respect to the passing of Her Majesty The Queen.
“The suspension applies to all senior rugby scheduled to take place this weekend (9th/lOtha1th September).
“The WRU is also fully supportive of decisions already taken by professional sides in Wales to cancel scheduled friendly fixtures.
“Mini, junior and U18 matches already in place this weekend do have permission to go ahead to avoid disruption to children and families, but clubs are requested to observe a period of two minutes’ silence before all matches.
“Further decisions about when to return to play will be taken next week in accordance with Royal protocol.”
The decision to cancel matches was not universally popular at the time however, with many fans leaving comments on social media reacting negatively to the announcements.
John McAllister responded to the FAW: “Shambles. Hope you’re going to reimburse clubs, volunteers, players and fans who have lost out financially as a result of these matches being postponed. And also helping financially for clubs who are going to have to use floodlighting for the rearranged games later in the year.”
Scott Beck added: “Ridiculous decision. All clubs could have paid their respects with a minute’s silence, wearing black armbands etc. Makes no sense cancelling sport when you go still go to the pub, restaurant, cinema, theatre, shopping etc!”
Historian Professor Martin Johnes of Swansea University pointed out that “football carried on the day after George VI died”.
Daniel Pugsley reacted to the WRU: “Absolutely bonkers decision so late in the day. Buses booked by teams for away games, food bought and yet another loss of revenue.
“Surely a minute’s silence by teams before a game tomorrow like they are doing in England would show far more respect.”
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