Eircom League clubs have voted to merge with the FAI and accept fundamental changes to the league's structure.

The Eircom League will be run by the FAI once the move is ratified at an FAI EGM in September.

The changes agreed upon include an increase in prize money and a reduction in the number of teams in the Premier Division from twelve to ten in 2009.

There will be a new four tier league structure with the 'Premiership', the First Division, the 'A' Championship and the under-20 league replacing the old format.

As expected, eligibility for the newly named Premiership and First Divisions for the 2007 season will be determined by an Independent Assessment Group appointed to use set criteria to rank clubs for the 2007 season only.

Chaired by Des Casey, UEFA Life Member and including former Dublin City Manager John Fitzgerald, former Irish International Niall Quinn and former Chairman of the Irish Sports Council Pat O'Neill, this committee will meet in for the first time in July.

Commenting on the clubs' acceptance, FAI Chief Executive Officer John Delaney said:  'I strongly believe tonight’s vote will bring the League to a whole new level, not overnight, but within 3 years we should have a fundamentally changed and improved senior domestic League.'

'There is a sense of something unique happening and that we might just get one shot at this, so I’m delighted with the clubs’ positive response to change.

'I feel a quite sense of optimism that the eircom League can improve significantly as a proposition in the years to come, he added.'

Chairman of the eircom League Paddy McCaul added: 'Change is never easy but the proposals put forward brought a feeling of confidence and optimism to the table.

'I think clubs have seen a really good vision of where the game can go and have put their confidence in what they saw as the future for the domestic game. It's a really great day for National League football.'