As Roy Barrett attempted to smooth tensions in the FAI by hosting a social evening with his fellow board members last night, the independent chairman was on the end of a stinging parting shot by Shelbourne chairman Andrew Doyle.
The corporate lawyer’s patience with what he brands as “appalling governance” within the new FAI finally broke when he quit both the senior council and finance committee.
It is the failure of Barrett to convene the latter committee since its formation was recommended in governance reforms 13 months ago that Doyle dishes out most blame for.
He also cites the contentious splitting of the 12-person board between independent and football directors among his six “serious issues”.
Barrett, he contends, didn’t acquire the necessary approval from his fellow board members to agree such as concession with then sports minister Shane Ross on January 30.
Doyle was one of the early speakers during Friday’s meeting of the senior council at the Red Cow Hotel but has had enough.
“I had hoped — indeed expected — that this year’s ‘new dawn’ would be bright and characterised by good governance at the very least,” Doyle told Barrett in an email shared with all board members.
“As I said to you during last Friday’s council meeting, and again in our conversation afterwards, this board’s performance on governance — in a little over six months — has been appalling. The most galling thing is that it has been entirely avoidable. You could have done it differently, yet, despite warnings, you did not.
“It is perfectly clear that by your failure to consult and engage with your board colleagues on specific concerns raised by them in advance regarding the Sport Ireland/State MOU, before marching off to sign it, was a breach of your duties as independent chairman.”
Barrett needs two-thirds of the 206 delegates at an EGM on August 31 to ratify the bailout, otherwise known as the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).
While he survived searching questions at Friday’s council meeting, the FAI’s first-ever independent chairman has been subject to more since. Paul Walsh, Chairman of the Colleges FAI (CFAI) was first to lodge his displeasure at proceedings before Doyle lashed out.
Meanwhile, the FAI is expected to defend a High Court case lodged by former senior team physiotherapist Ciarán Murray over his recent sacking.