FAI and Sport Ireland set up governance review group; FAI fined €10k for tennis ball protest

FAI and Sport Ireland set up governance review group; FAI fined €10k for tennis ball protest

A Governance Review Group's been set up to develop proposals of reform for the FAI.

Sport Ireland and the Football Association of Ireland have announced the move in a joint statement this evening.

It includes plans to review the existing governance arrangements within the FAI and supporting the Board and organisation in achieving good governance practice.

It comes after the association was fined €10,000 by UEFA for the tennis ball protest that marked last month's Euro 2020 qualifier with Georgia.

A smattering of tennis balls entered the field of play at the Aviva in the 33rd minute in protest at John Delaney and his governance of the association.

Since then, Delaney has stepped aside from his role as Executive Vice President and Sport Ireland have suspended funding pending the completion of two investigations.

FAI and Sport Ireland set up governance review group; FAI fined €10k for tennis ball protest

In a joint statement, they say they've set out milestones to bring about change ahead of and after the Association's AGM in July.

The make-up of the new Group includes independent Chairman Aidan Horan, Sport Ireland nominees Dr Moling Ryan and Joe O'Leary, along with FAI nominees Niamh O'Donoghue and Rea Walshe.

The two sports bodies met today and set out milestones to bring about change ahead of and following the FAI's AGM in Trim on July 27.

They have agreed to have a draft report completed by June 21.

The make-up of the new Group has been finalised with independent chairman Aidan Horan joined by Sport Ireland nominees Dr Moling Ryan and Joe O’Leary and FAI nominees Niamh O’Donoghue and Rea Walshe.

Welcoming the appointment of the Governance Review Group, FAI President Donal Conway said: "The Board of the Football Association of Ireland is committed to change and today is an important day for the FAI as we take the first steps forward.

"We are determined to rebuild the Association and ensure that we are fit for purpose as a modern and dynamic governing body for the biggest sport in the country. Working closely with UEFA and Sport Ireland, we are committed to delivering on our promise to reform the FAI and we believe this Governance Review Group can establish the foundation for change before the Board resigns at the AGM in July."

Sport Ireland CEO John Treacy said: "Sport Ireland welcomes the establishment of the Governance Review Group chaired by independent governance expert Aidan Horan. Alongside Aidan Horan, Sport Ireland has also nominated independent experts - Dr Moling Ryan and Joe O’Leary - who bring huge experience in governance, finance and change management.

"The work of the Governance Review Group is vitally important to the FAI progressing on its corporate governance reform agenda.

"I am confident that the Group will deliver ambitious reform proposals, which will be based on good governance practice and which will comply with UEFA policy."

The terms of reference for the new governance Group were agreed by the FAI and Sport Ireland.

    They include:

  • Reviewing the existing governance arrangements within the FAI and proposing a governance framework for the FAI in the context of good governance principles and practice.
  • Supporting the Board and the organisation in achieving and observing good governance practice.
  • Considering the organisation’s compliance with the Code of Practice for Good Governance of Community, Voluntary and Charitable Organisations in Ireland (2016), and other relevant Codes of good governance principles, norms and standards including those of UEFA and FIFA.
  • Specifically the Group will advise on board composition, board member/director nomination, election/appointment, term limits and succession planning, including through the development of a skills, knowledge, experience and diversity matrix for the Board.

  • In carrying out its work the Group will seek submissions and relevant input, where required and deemed appropriate by this group, from affiliates and members of the FAI and other stakeholders. It will also consult with wider stakeholders including UEFA and FIFA.
  • The Group will report to both Sport Ireland and the FAI Board. The FAI Board will in turn liaise with UEFA to ensure any proposed changes are in line with UEFA policy and practice on governance.

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