Glenavon Football team looks set to face an unexpected setback with the teams travel plans cancelled by Aer Lingus amid ongoing strike action. The team was scheduled to play a friendly match on Saturday 6th July against FC Erzgebirge Aue – an opportunity to represent the club on an international stage. Earlier last week, the Irish Airline Pilots Association (IALPA) announced an indefinite work-to-rule starting from Wednesday, 26th June, as a result of an ongoing pay dispute.

The first team squad together with Coaches, was scheduled to depart on flight EI0332 from Dublin to Berlin which is one of the many cancelled by the airline. The team were due to depart on Friday 5th July.

The convoy, comprising the first-team squad and coaches, had meticulously planned their departure only to face disappointment as their flight, along with many others, was cancelled by the airline. With 40 individuals set to fly, the sudden cancellation forced Aer Lingus to accommodate only 15 members of the party, leaving the majority of the team stranded.

The match which has been long in the pipeline would finally see the Lurgan Blues play their European Cup opponents. The team had been drawn to play Erzgebirge Aue in 1960 but were refused visas during the Cold War. Now 64 years after the draw was made the team were set to travel to play a friendly against Erzgebirge Aue who play in the Bundesliga third division, to fulfil the clubs’ preliminary round of the 1960/61 European Cup.

Despite a number of attempts by administration staff and management of Glenavon Football Club, so far, Aer Lingus are yet to respond with an alternative.

The team’s plans to play a friendly match at the Sparkassen-Erzgebirgsstadion grounds on Saturday have been disrupted, leaving them stranded.