FAI chief executive John Delaney is a man of his word.
Last month Delaney visited Cork City’s Turner’s Cross surveying the damage done to the Derrynane Road stand by Hurricane Ophelia.
A construction crew from Martin O’Callaghan Builders Limited were racing against the clock to have the ground ready for what proved to be Cork City’s title-clinching game against Derry City on October 17.
As an incentive, Delaney promised tickets for the Republic of Ireland’s World Cup play-off to the workers if the task was completed by the scheduled 5pm to ensure that the televised game could go ahead.
The workmen made their deadline — and last night Delaney duly delivered with nine members of the Carrigaline-based company guests of the FAI at the Aviva Stadium.
One of the workers, Peter Crowley, explained: “We do work for Horgan Lynch who are consultants for Turner’s Cross. On the day of the storm, Niall Fitzgerald, one of their engineers, called me to show me the damage caused to the roof and the work that would have to be done to get the venue ready for the match the next day.
“I started making calls straightaway and by 7am the next morning we had a team on site. John Delaney came over to us that morning and made his promise of tickets if we got the work done and the game went ahead.
“We kept our side of the bargain and fair play to him, he delivered in style.”
Mr Crowley was joined at last night’s game by John Reilly, John Maloney, David Murray, Chris O’Callaghan, Steve McCarthy, Brendan Desmond, Pat Connolly, and Paul Shanahan.
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