Shelbourne boss Ian Morris fears that the saga over the restart of the League of Ireland season has been damaging to the game.
But Morris admits he will experience a sense of relief to see his side back on the field tonight for the first time in three months, the Reds taking on Longford Town in a behind-closed-doors friendly.
"I'm relieved we have a date at last," said Morris. "It has been damaging to the league, it has made us look incompetent, like we're not a professional league. And that has a massive knock-on effect when you are trying to get sponsors in the door, trying to get revenue into the club.
"Every time you look in the papers or on social media there's more negativity, one bad point after another, and I just hope this week's announcement is the end of it.
"It will be even more difficult to attract new people to games, get new sponsors involved, if we don't get back playing."
Meanwhile, Waterford FC are in the running to sign former Ireland striker Daryl Murphy.
Murphy (37) is a free agent as he's out of contract with Bolton. The Trotters were relegated to League Two, and while new boss Ian Evatt has said he will speak to the squad, Murphy is expected to return to Ireland for family reasons.