Galway's Eoghan Kerin & Leitrim's Shane Quinn are covered in mud during last January's FBD Connacht League game in Clonbur. Photo by Willie Donnellan.
Leitrim are guaranteed just one game in the 2019 FBD Insurance Connacht League after a new knockout format was approved at a meeting of the Connacht GAA Council on Wednesday evening.
Terry Hyland's Leitrim will meet as yet managerless Mayo in the competition's quarter-finals on Sunday January 6, with the winners going on to face Provincial champions Galway in the semi-final while Roscommon will take on Sligo in the other semi-final on Sunday January 13.
The move comes after the 2018 FBD League was revamped to exclude college teams and saw each county team face each other, a move that meant Leitrim ended up with three Wednesday evening games after their game against Sligo was twice postponed because of snow and ice.
The new format means that all five counties could find their preseason campaigns ended after just one game, ensuring the need for more challenge games as new managers, in every county except Galway, run the rule over the players available to them.
However, the decision will also meet with some favour, cutting out mid-week games and travel at a time of the year when the weather is very unpredictable and cutting down on travel costs for County Boards.