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'We Will See': Pauw And McCabe Address Dutchwoman's Future As Ireland Manager

'We Will See': Pauw And McCabe Address Dutchwoman's Future As Ireland Manager
By Alanna Cunnane Updated
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Yesterday Ireland manager Vera Pauw responded to allegations put against her earlier this year that were set during her time working in the NWSL, casting a cloud on the WNT's World Cup build up and the Dutchwoman's potential contract extension.

Speaking at the pre France press conference, the Dutch woman expanded on her refutation of such allegations alongside the team captain Katie McCabe.

Journalist: At the time of the FAI statement in December did anyone from the FAI ask you or your teammates about Vera?

Katie McCabe: “At the time, I think it was December… there is always constant dialogue. We have never really had that dialogue in the past, not just in regards to the situation in December, but in general there has been open dialogue and there are conversations that do go on, which obviously then the FAI chose to release a statement. but there is constant dialogue between the women’s national team and the FAI and that relationship has grown over the last few years and will continue to grow.

“We will be as transparent to them like they are to us, which is obviously a nice thing because we know we can speak up and our voices will be heard.”

Journalist: Do you feel it would be helpful if the Irish players could make a statement of support to you?

 Vera Pauw: “They have done that to me. I did not ask for it, they came to me. I think the first thing I did…”


Katie McCabe: “Sorry to interrupt, but any internal conversations will happen internally. We are focusing on a massive game tomorrow and a massive tournament and five weeks ahead for us. That’s our job and that will be our focus going forward. Those conversations will happen internally.”

Vera Pauw: “I have asked, did you experience once, ever, one moment, and please ask also others, one moment when you felt uncomfortable with the way that I am coaching. They said, no, you are direct, but it is clear and honest. No, never. That’s the senior players, including Katie. If that is said to me, then yeah. I don’t want to go into those details because it is such incredible nonsense. Taking the pulse and that is abuse? I’m sorry?”

Journalist: Could it be a worry Katie that this is something you as a player could take that style but that  there potentially younger, quieter players that might speak out later?


 Katie McCabe: “It’s my job and as captain I am responsible to… as the leaders in the group, obviously it’s not just myself who has got fantastic experience, that of course monitor the overall atmosphere and environment of the group.

“You will see when we go out to train, we are all in a good place and we are ready to perform tomorrow. I know what you are saying, but also I can’t predict what will happen in the future.

“I have got a group of 25 teammates and a fantastic backroom staff who are fully focused on what to do and what to concentrate on in these next few weeks, going to our first ever major tournament. Of course it’s frustrating that we even have to be talking about this.”


Journalist: Has this affected your contract talks Vera?

Vera Pauw: “That is something you need to ask the FAI. I have said what I had to say about it.”

Journalist: You’re still hopeful?


Vera Pauw: “I’m not hopeful, no. Hopeful is if I’m begging or something.  I said I am happy in Ireland. Ireland has embraced me and that I feel very, very comfortable here.”

Journalist: Are contract talks still ongoing?

Vera Pauw: “Yes, but Ciaran Medlar [her representative] is the one who is doing that and you need to ask him. I’m not getting involved in it.”


Journalist: Do you expect to be Ireland manager after the World Cup?

Vera Pauw: “We will see. It is not signed, we will see. I am happy here. I want to stay here and we will see what is happening.”

Journalist: Katie would you like to see Vera Pauw stay on?

Katie McCabe: “Obviously it’s not my decision to make. I know I have spoken to Vera before and we’ve been on a journey these last few years together. Like I touched on earlier in the press conference, we have had highs and lows and we have been through a lot.

“It’s going to maximize both of our efforts and energy this next five weeks to push and drive the team to hopefully have a successful tournament, or as successful as can be, but obviously time will tell.

“Me and Vera have worked together the last few years and we will see.”

Journalist: Vera, on a personal level, has it been draining?


 Vera Pauw: “Of course what do you do think? I’ve got a bunch of players, if you see the video, you will how close we are together and how much fun we have together and how loud everybody is and then you things like that and it influences that atmosphere. Of course it is draining. Of course, because it is such a nonsense.

“I promised not to go into details, I don’t do that, but again, if all proof, if proven if players or an assistant coach, or cards or text messages that are handed into The Athletic they haven’t used that, that says it all, that’s an agenda.”

Journalist: Has it slightly taken a shine off the World Cup?

Vera Pauw: “The only thing what can you say about that is when the World Cup starts how you enjoy it and how we can manage that as a group. How strong we are. That is something that is really important that we keep we keep that bolt and nothing comes in between us because that bolt I’ve never felt before.”

Journalist: Do you think the timing of the article was done deliberately to undermine you?

Vera Pauw: “Yes.”

Journalist: How hurtful was the timing?

 Vera Pauw: “Very hurtful. Especially because I was given either the chance to react on their allegations or that they would file it without anything. I was forced to react.

“Proof has not been taken into the article. I find that very hurtful, that proof has not been taken in.”

Journalist: Down the road, can’t make your job very easy?

 Vera Pauw: “There is a person that is targeted to destroy my career.”

“This agenda is known, this agenda has been on Twitter, this agenda is with me and I have said that after the World Cup I am going to see if we go to take legal actions but for now this strategy works.”

Journalist: What doesn’t kill makes you stronger?

Vera Pauw: “Yes, that’s what we said at lunchtime. Everybody makes mistakes. I’m not saying I have not made mistakes but I have never ever done anything even close to what was said and in the tone that it was said.  I’m a coach."

Journalist: Who is this person?

 Vera Pauw: “This person is from the US."

Journalist: Can you name this person?

 Vera Pauw: “No.”

Journalist: Why not?

 Vera Pauw: “Because I need to see about legal action.”

5 July 2023; Katie McCabe and manager Vera Pauw during a Republic of Ireland women press conference at Tallaght Stadium in Dublin. Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Ireland manager Vera Pauw's France preview

Amidst the controversy Pauw also talked of the Irish WNT’s final send off game before they fly out for Australia tomorrow.

Taking on fifth in the world ranked France, who themselves have recently replaced manager Corinne Diacre for Herve Renard following rumours of a rift between her and the squad, will be a tough test, but it’s one Pauw and the team are fully ready for.

“This game was always the most important in our preparation for FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 so it was crucial that we secured a top level opponent who would give us the kind of challenge that we need to be familiar with going into the World Cup. France are an excellent team and we are looking forward to this challenge.

“Our preparation, to date, has been excellent. We now need to test ourselves in a high pressure game because we expect France to be physically strong, athletic, quick and superb in both attacking and defending.

This is exactly why we chose to play against them, we must be ready for what the best teams will come at us with.”

Explaining that whether they will play a full strength side or balance with game time opportunities for those who haven’t had the chance as of yet remains to be seen, depending on what is needed for progression.

“There are players that maybe not want to play 90 minutes and players that we maybe want to see, and the game will tell us if we need to change” she says.

“It’s a result game, its about results. We including as few players that might need protection.”

With the entire 23 woman squad fit for selection at the sold out Tallaght Stadium game, it kicks off at eight o’clock and is also available to watch on RTÉ2.

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