Football, Association Football, or Soccer; whatever name you give it, it has long been one of the most popular sports in Northern Ireland. The Irish League, in which teams from the north competed, began in 1922. During the Second World War, there were many changes.
Between 1940 and 1947, footballing authorities suspended The Irish League. The Northern Ireland Regional League or North Regional League operated during this time. All teams comprised amateur players and some also fielded military service personnel based in Ulster at the time.
Wartime football in Northern Ireland continued throughout the Second World War. In the latter years, there were many charity games, fundraisers, and friendlies involving sporting teams and military units.
Recommended reading: ‘A Record of British Wartime Football’ by Brian McColl.
1940-1941 Northern Regional Football League
This season saw the beginning of the Northern Regional Football League. Matches between Glenavon v Linfield and Portadown v Belfast Celtic did not take place.