Danske Bank Premiership
FIFA Region
Northern Ireland


The NIFL Premiership (NIR1), or Dankse Bank Premiership, is the top division in Northern Ireland's football system. At the end of the 2020-2021 NIR1 season, the NIR1 teams listed below qualify for the following non-league play:

  • 2021-2022 UEFA Champions League - 1st Qualifying Round:
    • 1st place 2020-2021 NIR1 team
  • 2021-2022 UEFA Europa Conference League - 1st Qualifying Round:
    • 2nd place 2020-2021 NIR1 team
    • 2020-2021 NIR1 UEFA Europa Conference League Playoffs winner

The winner of the 2020-2021 Irish Football Association Challenge Cup (Irish Cup), typically a NIR1 team, also receives a berth in the 1st Qualifying Round of the 2021-2022 UEFA Europa Conference League.

Leagues Pyramid - Northern Ireland

Abbrev League # of Teams
NIR1 Dankse Bank Premiership 12
NIR2 NIFL Championship 12
NIR3 NIFL Premier Intermediate League 12

Competition Structure


# of Teams

17 Oct 2020 - 24 Apr 2021
Champ/Releg Rounds
28 Apr 2021 - 11 May 2021
UEFAECL Playoffs
14 May 2021 - 22 May 2021
12: NIR1 (10 minimum), NIR2 (2 maximum)

Season Format

The 2020-2021 NIR1 season consists of 2 stages. In the first stage, each NIR1 team plays the other 11 NIR1 teams 3 times for a total of 33 league matches. In each 3 match series one team hosts 2 home matches and the other team hosts 1 home match. In the second stage, the top six teams play each other a 4th time (5 more matches) to determine final rankings for UEFA Champions League and Europa League placements, and the bottom six teams play each other a 4th time (5 more matches) to determine the relegation placements. Total points are for all 38 matches. Table ranking ties are broken by (1) goal difference, (2) goals scored, (3) head-to-head points, (4) head-to-head goal difference, then (5) a drawing.


Not applicable.


At the end of the 2020-2021 NIR1 season, the 12th place NIR1 team is relegated to the NIR2, and the 11th place NIR1 team enters into a Home-Away highest aggregate score playoff with the 2nd place NIR2 team. The playoff winner and the 1st place NIR2 team play in the 2021-2022 NIR1, and the playoff loser plays in the 2021-2022 NIR2.

More Info...

1st Stage

1Linfield FC 1310 -1-231-35142176 -1-0192451964 -0-2121192
2Larne FC 128 -3-127-2191276 -0-118134952 -3-09853
3Crusaders FC 138 -2-326-29141576 -1-0191941562 -1-3710100
4Ballymena United FC 126 -2-420-1913662 -1-37810-264 -1-1131138
5Coleraine FC 126 -1-519-1814474 -0-31297252 -1-27972
6Cliftonville 135 -2-617-1816274 -1-213148661 -1-4448-4
7Glentoran FC 113 -5-314-1912763 -3-0121431150 -2-3259-4
8Glenavon FC 113 -4-413-1718-161 -3-261112-152 -1-27660
9Warrenpoint Town FC 133 -3-712-1124-1351 -2-2556-182 -1-57618-12
10Portadown FC 102 -2-68-1124-1330 -1-2115-472 -1-471019-9
11Dungannon Swifts FC 132 -2-98-830-2262 -0-46613-770 -2-52217-15
12Carrick Rangers FC 91 -1-74-725-1841 -1-2466050 -0-50119-18
Championship Group
Relegation Group


Tue - 26 Jan 2021
 Cliftonville   Linfield FCSolitude (Belfast)
 Larne FC   Coleraine FCInver Park
 Portadown FC   Crusaders FCShamrock Park
 Warrenpoint Town FC   Ballymena United FCMilltown Playing Fields
Sat - 30 Jan 2021
 Carrick Rangers FC   Ballymena United FCBelfast Loughshore Hotel Arena
 Cliftonville   Glenavon FCSolitude (Belfast)
 Coleraine FC   Crusaders FCThe Showgrounds (Coleraine)
 Larne FC   Glentoran FCInver Park
 Linfield FC   Dungannon Swifts FCWindsor Park (Belfast)
Tue - 2 Feb 2021
 Ballymena United FC   Dungannon Swifts FCThe Showgrounds (Ballymena)
 Coleraine FC   CliftonvilleThe Showgrounds (Coleraine)
 Crusaders FC   Glentoran FCSeaview (Belfast)
 Glenavon FC   Larne FCMourneview Park
 Linfield FC   Portadown FCWindsor Park (Belfast)
 Warrenpoint Town FC   Carrick Rangers FCMilltown Playing Fields
Tue - 9 Feb 2021
 Cliftonville   Warrenpoint Town FCSolitude (Belfast)
 Carrick Rangers FC   Linfield FCBelfast Loughshore Hotel Arena


Sat - 23 Jan 2021
 Linfield FC 60 Warrenpoint Town FCWindsor Park (Belfast)
 Glenavon FC FT Glentoran FCMourneview Park
 Crusaders FC 33 Larne FCSeaview (Belfast)
 Coleraine FC 20 Dungannon Swifts FCThe Showgrounds (Coleraine)
 Carrick Rangers FC FT Portadown FCBelfast Loughshore Hotel Arena
 Ballymena United FC FT CliftonvilleThe Showgrounds (Ballymena)
Tue - 19 Jan 2021
 Crusaders FC PSPD Linfield FCSeaview (Belfast)
 Coleraine FC PSPD Portadown FCThe Showgrounds (Coleraine)
Sat - 16 Jan 2021
 Warrenpoint Town FC PSPD Glentoran FCMilltown Playing Fields
 Linfield FC PSPD Coleraine FCWindsor Park (Belfast)
 Cliftonville PSPD Larne FCSolitude (Belfast)
 Carrick Rangers FC PSPD Glenavon FCBelfast Loughshore Hotel Arena
 Ballymena United FC PSPD Crusaders FCThe Showgrounds (Ballymena)
Tue - 12 Jan 2021
Sat - 9 Jan 2021
 Warrenpoint Town FC PSPD Dungannon Swifts FCMilltown Playing Fields
 Portadown FC PSPD Glenavon FCShamrock Park
 Linfield FC PSPD Glentoran FCWindsor Park (Belfast)