Derry City boss Declan Devine has said fixture scheduling in the SSE Airtricity League is "unacceptable and ridiculous" and questioned how clubs can function with a six-week gap without a home game set to follow for his side. 

The Candystripes were in Dublin last night for a rescheduled game with St Patrick’s Athletic – brought forward from July because of the Saints being involved in the Europa League.

But recent Under-21 call-ups have added to the problems of trying to fit in league games.

Clubs played nine times in a five-week period earlier in the season, while the UEFA Under-17 tournament also saw adjustments to league games in an already cramped programme.

Now the upcoming Toulon Tournament will see a number of matches postponed due to the involvement of several SSE Airtricity Premier Division players.

As a result, both Derry and Cork City will have no home games for six weeks, leaving a case of feast and famine once again.

Games have yet to be officially called off, but City’s game with UCD on 31 May and Waterford on 14 June are likely to be played later in the year.

Devine’s man host Finn Harps on Friday, but their next game in the Brandywell in 5 July against Dundalk and that too will be moved due to the Lilywhites playing in the Champions League that week. 

One of the postponed games is likely to be fitted in at some point before the clash with Sligo Rovers on 19 July but the situation has left Devine furious.

He told RTÉ Sport: "Without being controversial, it’s great we have so many games but ultimately two of the top clubs in Ireland are playing here and there is about 700 people at the game. Why is that?

"People don’t have the money to go to games every three days. It’s just ridiculous. Now we don’t have a home game for six weeks. What are we going to do? How are we going to survive? Where will the gates come from? It’s absolute madness.

"Without putting my boot into the league  and all the rest, it’s just not on. Six weeks without a home game and fans are paying every two or three days to come and support us.

"It’s just unacceptable and ridiculous in the grand scheme of things. We’ll see where it takes us but in my opinion it’s just ludicrous."

Sligo raised similar complaints last year after an 11-week period without a home game materialised. 

Cork will play five away matches in succession, including four in Dublin, if their game against Waterford at 9 June is postponed as is expected.