John Delaney has said that the FAI is expecting to yield a massive profit by the end of 2015 due to ticket sales for European Championship qualifying games at the Aviva Stadium.
Speaking at the launch of the new colleges and universities football season, Delaney claimed that the windfall from sell-out matches against Poland, Scotland and England (friendly), along with 49,000 tickets already snapped up for the forthcoming clash with Germany, has put the association in rude financial health.
Even if Ireland were not to qualify for the Euros, which could be worth an additional €8million to the FAI, Delaney confidently predicted that the books will be more than balanced.
“We will be in around a five or six million pound profit, irrespective of qualification this year,” he told the Examiner. “It is a good financial year for sure but it will be better certainly if we qualify.”
Furthermore, Delaney went to say that he was happy with the job Martin O’Neill has done to date, and was encouraged to hear that the Derry man would be interested in a second term as Ireland manager, even if the bid to make France next summer is unsuccessful.
“All I can say is that I really enjoy working with Martin O’Neill. He is a good guy to work with, a very straight guy, and my staff enjoy working with him. We really do. We will see how the games work out in October and November. And after that then we’ll sit down and talk to Martin.
“It is always positive to hear that the senior manager is very happy in the job. I am meeting him, and Roy, later on down in Cork, and from his point of view there are two big games coming up. Possibly two more in November,” he added.
With pivotal games with Germany and Poland fast approaching, Ireland, who currently sit in third spot in Group D, four points ahead of Scotland, are in prime position to make the play-offs, but Delaney isn’t taking anything for granted.
“The great thing is we are back in it. I don’t think we were ever out of it but we were written off too quick after the game (Scotland) in June. Results have gone our way in September but they could go the other way in October just as easily as they’ve come our way.
“The thing, as always, is to let the games take place, let us see where we finish up post-October or post-November and then we’ll sit down and see what we do.”