FAI to fight england for Blues starlet Bamford
THE FAI are preparing to step up their attempts to secure the services of young Chelsea striker Patrick Bamford, who has represented both Ireland and England at underage level, WRITES DANIEL McDONNELL.
Bamford, a 19-year-old attacker, has impressed with League One side MK Dons on a loan spell away from Stamford Bridge.
He qualifies through the grandparents rule and featured once for the Ireland U-18 side before lining out for his native England at U-18 and U-19 level.
England are still keen on the player, but Irish U-21 boss Noel King is an admirer and wants to bring the Lincolnshire-born teenager into his squad.
Elsewhere, RTE has secured the free-to-air broadcast rights of Ireland's Euro 2016 and World Cup 2018 qualifiers.
The deal is part of a European Broadcasting Union (EBU) agreement which allows 30 countries to broadcast their national team matches on free to air stations, in addition to radio and digital platforms.
Discussions will continue about the future of 'Monday Night Soccer', the flagship programme for the League of Ireland.
When RTE announced the extension of their interntional rights from 2010 to 2014, it accompanied the expansion of League of Ireland coverage, including the introduction of 'MNS' and a gradual increase of live games.
But a separate discussion will now take place about the national broadcaster's plans for covering the domestic game.