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Finn Harps forced to play at 5pm on Friday over floodlights issue

Finn Harps have said a move to their new stadium is "vital for the survival of the club" after being forced to change Friday's League of Ireland First Division match in Finn Park to a 5pm kick-off due to a floodlight issue.

In a statement the club said lighting have been a regular problem at the ground in recent years due to the dilapidated facilities at the venue.

Harps say they have not been in a position to access the grant for an LED system but continue to pursue this avenue.

In the meantime efforts to source components to update the existing lights did not succeed this week ahead of a planned test.

The club said: "We very much regret the inconvenience caused to our supporters but the club has no choice following the failure of the floodlight system to pass a test on Wednesday evening.

"The club ordered and paid for components before the season, but were informed late on that the order could not be fulfilled. Further efforts to source the needed components saw a delivery today, but the wrong type was sent to us meaning the test this evening was failed.

"It continues to be a huge challenge to ensure the facilities at Finn Park meet licencing criteria and we are very grateful to our volunteers and local tradespeople for their ongoing efforts. This regrettable situation is further evidence that the move to a new stadium is vital for the survival of the club."

The Donegal outfit have been aiming to move to a new venue in Stranorlar but it has been met with numerous delays since building began 13 years ago.

A scaled back version of the venue was approved two years ago. Over €4.5m has been allocated in funding for the build but considerably more will be needed, including through their own channels.

Yesterday the government revealed

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