Football

Andy Townsend Calls For Change At The 'Top Of Irish Football'

Andy Townsend Calls For Change At The 'Top Of Irish Football'

Former Irish international Andy Townsend has called for change at the top of Irish football after last night's UEFA Nations League defeat to Wales.

The 1-0 loss is Ireland's second in three Nations League games, and leaves the team needing a win away to Denmark and a Welsh win over the Danes in Cardiff to avoid relegation to League C and a more difficult draw for the Euro 2020 qualifiers.

Speaking to Game On on RTE 2FM in the aftermath of a third defeat in four competitive games for Ireland, Townsend called for a regime change at the top of Irish football.

There needs to be a regime change at the very top of Irish football. That is the area that needs to change; the powers that be that run our game here. Clearly there has to be a different mindset coming from those people.

That will ultimately take time to develop and time to implement.

Whether indeed it ever happens, because that is a boys club. It's a job for the boys that run the game here. If you try to get rid of any of them, you are doing well.

All I know is when I look at David Brooks, Harry Wilson, and some of those, it shows there are other nations able to produce and find players.

There will be some that argue that we don't integrate them fast enough into the senior team in order to develop them.

The FAI have yet to respond to our request for comment.

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Elsewhere, Martin O'Neill has said that he accepts responsibility for Ireland's performances on the field.

Do you know what? I am not so sure that I have ever not asked questions about myself. I think I do. In terms of questioning myself as a professional, both as a player and as a manager, I’ve always done it. Genuinely always done it. I take responsibility for every kick that is made on that field by us. That is my job. That will not change. And I do question everything that happens on the field.

I look back again to see what we may have been able to do a little bit better and hopefully that improvement continues.

O'Neill also told the media of his conviction that his squad have enough quality to qualify for Euro 2020. "I genuinely do. I think some of the younger lads here, these are big matches for them to have played in, big games".

See Also: O'Neill's Era Is Done - We Must Now Decide Whether The Irish Team Is Worth Caring About

Gavin Cooney
Article written by
Changed the spelling of his name upon pressure from Michael Owen.

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