Ray Barrett says FAI will decide on rule changes

FAI Chairman Roy Barrett insists his board will decide the rule changes to be ratified by members to facilitate the restoration of state funding.
Ray Barrett says FAI will decide on rule changes
FAI Chairman Roy Barrett. Pic: INPHO/Morgan Treacy
FAI Chairman Roy Barrett. Pic: INPHO/Morgan Treacy

FAI Chairman Roy Barrett insists his board will decide the rule changes to be ratified by members to facilitate the restoration of state funding.

Barrett has been criticised for agreeing radical reforms in return for the €35m government bailout in January, particularly allowing the board to become dominated by directors from outside of football.

But Barrett claims the modernisation of structures is vital, not just to regain state support but also in attracting sponsorship.

“Results of our research clearly show our reputation has been really damaged in recent years,” Barrett wrote in a message informing council members and EGM will be held in the near future.

“Our poor profile among key stakeholders, sponsors and the general public has had a significant impact on our reputation which seriously damages our ability to generate the investment required to invest in the FAI.

“Over the coming weeks, we will be communicating our strategy and a restructuring of the FAI to our members. We have used external expertise to help guide us on this journey.

“The board has now got to decide on the reforms that are required to the constitution to support our strategy, restructure, and our commitments to our financial partners.

“Over the last three months we have been engaged with all the stakeholders to agree a number of reforms that are required to improve our reputation and give our financial partners and sponsors the confidence that we have proper structures in place to enable them to invest in the Association.

“Consequently, we will be proposing a number of changes to the rules of the FAI and the Constitution to ensure that we can meet these requirements and support our new strategy and restructuring plans.”

Barrett also confirmed they have had to access the state’s €40m Covid-19 recovery fund made available to the FAI, GAA and IRFU. This was to ensure the FAI’s “continued viability”.

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