Football

Watch: 'More Statements From The FAI Than Bank Of Ireland Issue In A Year'

Watch: 'More Statements From The FAI Than Bank Of Ireland Issue In A Year'

Brian Kerr is in the Virgin Media Sports studio tonight to run his eye over Man City's clash with Spurs in the Champions League earlier on, but the former Irish boss was never not going to give his colourful opinion on the goings on with Sport Ireland and the FAI today.

After it was announced earlier that the statutory body has decided to 'suspend and withhold' paying the remainder of funding due to the Football Association until they get their house in order, Kerr was resounding in his call for the FAI board to be broken up and reformed, accusing it's members of being "complicit" in the events that have rocked Irish soccer in the last couple of weeks".

"In my book, the board have been complicit in what’s been going on in the FAI and how the organisation has been run during the current tenure of the CEO", said the 66-year-old.

They themselves should be getting out of it all together. It’s time for reform and a complete change. That board have been there for far too long and they are well past their sell-by date.

They have hung in and hung in and now it appears they are hanging here in again by claiming they’ve only found out some of the things that were going on. Why weren’t they aware? It’s their job to know what’s going on.

Year after year at the AGM, we have seen that there has never been any questioning of the CEO or the board itself and that has to change now.

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The Dubliner, who managed the national senior side between 2003 and 2005, believes that Sport Ireland's decision to cease all further funding to Irish soccer's governing body would have been a difficult one to come to, given the comments of its CEO John Treacy and Chairman Kieran Mulvey at last week's meeting with the Oireachtas Committee on Transport, Tourism and Sport.

It’s very significant in that last week at their meeting, Sport Ireland CEO John Treacy and Chair of the Sport Ireland Board, Kieran Mulvey, said they would be most reluctant to withdraw funding understanding that it might affect some of the grassroots programmes that are very important to people in football.

So they obviously have a very strong reason for withdrawing that funding, but we are in the extraordinary situation where a loan from the CEO to his employer, that looks quite benign and a nice thing to do, has become a situation where we have three different consultancies to investigations the FAI.

We have had more statements from the FAI than the Bank of Ireland would issue in a year over the last few weeks.

The statement form the President today appears to suggest they have put their hands up and said we have done wrong and we are going to be good boys in the future, but that’s not good enough anymore. We need to see change now.

A delegation from the FAI, including Executive Vice President John Delaney, will sit in front of the same committee tomorrow morning to answer questions on the governance of the organisation after it was brought to light last month that Mr Delaney loaned the Association €100,000 to ease a so-called cash flow problem last year.

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Aaron Strain

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