Football

Report: FAI Won't Receive €4.3M UEFA Payment, With Money Drawn By Previous Board

Report: FAI Won't Receive €4.3M UEFA Payment, With Money Drawn By Previous Board

It is being reported that the FAI will not benefit from UEFA's payments to its member association, with the association's previous board having already drawn the money.

UEFA announced last week that each of their 55 member associations would receive an advanced €4.3million payment in order to deal with the costs associated with the coronavirus. This money was due to be paid at a later date via UEFA's HatTrick scheme, but was brought forward as a result of the pandemic.

It had been hoped that part of this money could be used to ensure a swift return for the League of Ireland, but it appears that the FAI will not benefit.

The Irish Independent are reporting that the FAI have already received their portion of the €236.5million, which was drawn down by the previous board during the John Delaney era. The association were in dire financial straits during this period.

This will be a major blow, especially when you consider that cash flow seems to remain an issue. FAI CEO Gary Owens has said they they will need the cash injection from the UEFA Nations League match originally planned for September of this year, with that fixture currently looking uncertain.

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UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin explained the reasoning behind releasing the funds at an earlier date:

Our sport is facing an unprecedented challenge brought about by the COVID-19 crisis.

UEFA wants to help its members to respond in ways that are appropriate to their specific circumstances.

As a result, we have agreed that up to €4.3m per association, paid for the remainder of this season and next, as well as part of the investment funding, can be used as our members see fit to rebuild the football community.

I believe this is a responsible decision to help as much as we can; and I am proud of the unity that football is showing throughout this crisis.

However, it looks like Ireland will not be amongst those to benefit.

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Gary Connaughton

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