Monday 19 February 2018

Niall Quinn: "I'm loving just being a football fan"

Soccer legend plans to spend more time in Africa with new company

Niall Quinn shows off his skills
Niall Quinn shows off his skills

Eimear Rabbitte

Irish football legend Niall Quinn is to spend more time in Africa next year as he continues to expand his media business.

The former Ireland soccer international has enjoyed a moderately successful year with his satellite company, Q Sat, which is now branching out to East Africa.

Q Sat, which has opened an office in Kenya, is part of an Irish team seeking to develop broadband in Kenya, Uganda and other African territories.

Speaking to the Irish Independent, Quinn said that his company’s move into Africa was still a work in progress, but that he was enjoying the experience immensely.

“I have been out there at least once a month over the last ten or eleven months,” the dad of two explained.

“It has been an enthralling experience for me and a great education as to how that world works.”

“There is still plenty to do before we are fully developed over there, but it has been a very interesting experience and I am glad that I decided to explore it.”

Quinn, who is based in Kildare with his wife Gillian and children, Aisling (19) and Michael (17), said that it would be a long time before he considered a move away from Ireland.

“The world is such as small place now that travelling there and back is very much possible and I am enjoying this different part of my life,” he said.

The 47-year-old also said that his focus is now on developing his company, while keeping his commentating career with Sky Sports as a “sideline business”.

“I think the company is in a healthy position and it is always a risk to set up something in this day and age, but we are getting there.”

“I am really enjoying my work with Sky Sports and it is great being able to take a step back and to just be a football fan.”

Quinn was on hand on Monday to open a new astro-turf football at Tiglin Rehabilitation Centre in Ashford Co. Wicklow where he spent hours chatting to staff and football fans.

The men-only centre, which first opened its doors in 2008, is a centre for males, most of whom are homeless due to addiction problems.

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