New season kicks off with big derby games as talks continue for fans to return

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Fixtures have been released for the new Danske Bank Premiership season which kicks off on October 17th.

There are three big derby games on the opening day - Cliftonville host Glentoran, Coleraine welcome Ballymena and on their return to the top flight Portadown go to Glenavon.

Linfield launch the defence of the Gibson Cup at home to Carrick Rangers, Larne have Dungannon Swifts and Crusaders travel to Warrenpoint.

The fixture release marks the four-week countdown to kick-off. The league season is due to end on May 22nd. 

NIFL says discussions are continuing about supporters being admitted to matches. 

Centre-back Howard Beverland will be starting the season at Ballycastle Road - the 30-year-old has rejoined Coleraine on a three-year deal after leaving Crusaders. It follows news Stripes defender Aaron Canning has been transfer-listed. 


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