Opinion Shane Ross

Saturday 16 December 2017

Shane Ross: Keane coup is a golden goal for FAI and Aviva

BRINGING THE CROWDS BACK: Roy Keane at Friday’s match against Latvia
BRINGING THE CROWDS BACK: Roy Keane at Friday’s match against Latvia

Shane Ross

TWO months ago Irish soccer was on its knees. Trapattoni had departed, defeated and dejected, leaving morale at rock bottom. We had a team of second raters, no tournament in prospect, a vacancy for the manager's job and thousands of disillusioned fans.

Worse still, John Delaney and his crew at the FAI must have been haunted by the prospect of an empty Aviva stadium for years to come.

If FAI shares had been traded on the Dublin stock exchange they would have tanked. Its balance sheet was weighed down by €63m in debt owing on the Aviva stadium, about to become Ireland's biggest white elephant since the DAA built Dublin's Terminal 2. The Celtic Tiger had claimed another casualty. Trapattoni might have been dead meat, but Delaney was toast.

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