FAI to take action against Dundalk boss Foster

DUNDALK manager Ian Foster is facing disciplinary action after blaming the FAI for a fixture pile-up and the club’s inability to register new signing Stephen Leonard in time for last Sunday’s 4-0 defeat by Shamrock Rovers.

The Lilywhites are due to play Levski Sofia in the Europa League in Bulgaria tomorrow night.

“We keep getting told about coefficients,” said Foster after the defeat by Rovers. “And you see these FAI blazers travelling with us and getting on the bandwagon but you don’t see them helping us.”

Foster was also angry that striker Leonard had been unavailable for the Rovers game.

“We signed a player on Friday but he couldn’t play because we’ve got to send it by registered post. Why can’t you fax it or email it? We’re in the dark ages, honest to God.”

However, the FAI yesterday strongly denied Foster’s accusations and confirmed that it will refer his comments to Disciplinary Control Unit.

Said Airtricity League Director Fran Gavin: “Ian Foster has already been reprimanded by his own club this season for making silly remarks without being fully acquainted with the facts.

“Today’s comments will now be referred to the Disciplinary Control Unit. As a club manager in his second season, he should be aware of what is required at a club operating at Dundalk’s level. He has mobile numbers for me and my colleagues and has contacted us on numerous occasions in the past, out of hours, and we have always been happy to assist. The pressures of club management can not excuse such repeated, inaccurate and irresponsible claims.”

Last night, Lilywhites CEO Gerry Matthews distanced the club from Foster’s comments.

“Dundalk Football Club enjoy an excellent working relationship with the FAI and are grateful for the support and assistance which the Association have provided to the club and its staff, particularly regarding European licensing compliance matters and in the upgrading of Oriel Park to a UEFA category 2 stadium.

“The board of management of Dundalk FC will meet with Ian Foster to discuss the seriousness of these comments on the squads return from Bulgaria after the Europa League fixture with PFC Levski.”

Meanwhile, RTÉ have said Sunday’s World Cup Final attracted the highest TV audience of the tournament with an average of 762,200 viewers watching the entire four-hour programme on RTÉ Two, the audience peaking at over 1.1 million viewers.

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