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John Delaney set to leave the FAI

Another two Board members may leave along with the Executive Vice-President.

John Delaney John Delaney: high-level talks. Source: Oisin Keniry/INPHO

JOHN DELANEY IS set to leave the Football Association of Ireland, The42 understands.

Delaney’s future was discussed at Board meetings last night and today. 

Although an official FAI announcement is not now expected this evening, Secretary of Kerry District League Soccer John O’Regan has since confirmed to Radio Kerry that Delaney sent him a text to confirm he was ‘stepping down’ from his role as the FAI’s Executive Vice-President. 

The42 also understands that the future of another two members of the Board – Honorary Treasurer Eddie Murray and Honorary Secretary Michael Cody – are in the balance as their futures have been subject to Board discussion. 

Murray appeared at Wednesday’s Oireachtas meeting along with Delaney, while Cody was one of only three Board members – Delaney and then-president Tony Fitzgerald – to know at the time about the €100,000 loan Delaney paid to the FAI in April 2017.

The rest of the Board were informed of the loan on 4 March this year. 

It is also understood that tomorrow’s Sunday Times will contain further damaging revelations about the FAI. 

This has been an extraordinarily turbulent week for the FAI, coming off the back of Wednesday’s highly contentious appearance before the Oireachtas Committee on Sport. Delaney refused to address questions regarding the €100,000 loan and his time as CEO citing legal advice, leading to Sinn Féin TD Imelda Munster to say that Delaney had “acted disgracefully”, and that the FAI were giving “two fingers” to the public. 

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar remarked yesterday that “I don’t think anyone would be satisfied by” Delaney’s appearance, acknowledging his right to cite legal advice. 

Ever since, the PFAI have been moved to call for reform at the FAI, with Chairman Gary Rogers calling the appearance a “new low for Irish football”. Last night’s League of Ireland fixtures featured banners critical of Delaney and the FAI, while primary sponsors Three were moved to emphasise the importance of good corporate governance in a statement to The42 on Thursday. 

John Delaney became Treasurer of the FAI in 2001, and then became full-time CEO in 2005. He served that role until late on Saturday, 23 March, when it was announced that he would assume a new role entitled Executive Vice President following a governance review conducted by Jonathan Hall Associates. 

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Gavin Cooney

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