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FAI introduce pay deferrals of up to 50% amid Covid-19 crisis

The scheme extends to all staff, including Mick McCarthy and his backroom team.

A view of FAI offices in Abbottstown.
A view of FAI offices in Abbottstown.
Image: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

THE FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION of Ireland (FAI) have introduced a tiered pay deferral scheme for staff to mitigate against the financial effects of the Covid-19 crisis. 

With all football activity in the country suspended under the direction of government and public health officials, the FAI’s already-straitened finances have taken a significant hit. 

As a result, staff earning more than €25,000 will have a percentage of their wages for April deferred. The scheme is operating under a sliding scale of between 10 and 50%, with those earning the most subject to the higher rate. 

The deferrals extends to all staff, including Irish senior men’s manager Mick McCarthy and his backroom team. 

In a statement, Interim CEO of the FAI Gary Owens said the Association informed staff of the deferral scheme this morning, and hope to restore pay and refund the deferrals as “as soon as the national economic situation improves.” 

“Like the rest of the country, the FAI is now feeling the full financial impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on our projected income streams in these exceptional circumstances”, said Owens.

“The financial challenges faced by the Association are such now that we have been left with no choice but to implement these pay deferrals on an equitable basis. Those who are paid the most by the FAI will take the largest deferrals.

“This difficult decision has been taken to protect the viability of the Association and the future for our staff. Like other national governing bodies who have taken such measures, we will explore all avenues to help us through this crisis.” 

It is the second time this year the FAI have had to act to safeguard their financial future, as in January they agreed a government bailout worth €20 million to save the Association from insolvency amid liabilities of around €63 million, the extent of which were exposed in the aftermath of the exit of long-time Chief Executive John Delaney. 

FAI members recently voted to accept the refinanced terms of a loan agreement, along with a €14 million loan from European governing body Uefa. 

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Gavin Cooney

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