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'Brian has something to give' - President McAnaney backs for Kerr role in rejuvenated FAI

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Kerr did little to disguise his enthusiasm about the new guard in an appearance on Off The Ball where he praised their ‘coverage’ and ‘bravery’ for getting involved at this juncture. Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Kerr did little to disguise his enthusiasm about the new guard in an appearance on Off The Ball where he praised their ‘coverage’ and ‘bravery’ for getting involved at this juncture. Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Kerr did little to disguise his enthusiasm about the new guard in an appearance on Off The Ball where he praised their ‘coverage’ and ‘bravery’ for getting involved at this juncture. Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

New FAI president Gerry McAnaney has said he is prepared to take a leading role in bringing his friend Brian Kerr back into Abbotstown.

The prospect of a position for Kerr has been floated since changes at the top of the FAI resulted in a new wave of appointments.

And the former Ireland manager and European Championship-winning underage boss yesterday hailed the arrival of Gary Owens, Niall Quinn and Roy Barrett having previously stated he would be open to helping out.

McAnaney is confident that Kerr will come back inside the tent after being frozen out under the old regime and will do his bit to ensure it comes to pass.

"I think he has said that he has no problem if somebody in the FAI comes to him, if they have a project or anything that they want him (for), he'll be more than willing, I think, certainly, to talk to the FAI," said McAnaney.

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Outgoing President of the FAI Donal Conway, left, presents President elect Gerry McAnaney with the Presidential Chain of Office during an FAI EGM at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Blanchardstown in Dublin. Photo by Matt Browne/Sportsfile

Outgoing President of the FAI Donal Conway, left, presents President elect Gerry McAnaney with the Presidential Chain of Office during an FAI EGM at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Blanchardstown in Dublin. Photo by Matt Browne/Sportsfile

Outgoing President of the FAI Donal Conway, left, presents President elect Gerry McAnaney with the Presidential Chain of Office during an FAI EGM at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Blanchardstown in Dublin. Photo by Matt Browne/Sportsfile

"And I would certainly be willing to talk to him myself. I don't have to tell you about Brian and what he has done over the years.

"The one thing I know about Brian, and I know him a long time, he is an extremely loyal person. That loyalty stretches to Irish football, through thick and thin. So, Brian has something to give, of course he has. We all know him. I think he will. He said it."

Kerr did little to disguise his enthusiasm about the new guard in an appearance on Off The Ball where he praised their 'coverage' and 'bravery' for getting involved at this juncture.

He said that ex-Irish schoolboy player and retired army commandant McAnaney, a 61-year-old Cork-based Dubliner, would 'add another layer of common sense and sharpness' to the power structure.

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"A huge change of culture needs to take place because the previous culture ensured that good people were suppressed," said Kerr.

"A lot of very good people were discarded and moved on because they challenged that authority. Some of the implementers of that culture will have to change or move on and I think some of that is already taking place.

"I believe there are good people at the top of the organisation, whether some of them are interim or not, and I would hope they stay for a lot longer or people as good as them come to the table after six months."

Kerr acknowledged that Quinn's specific brief is unclear but he welcomed his presence, suggesting he is a reassuring presence.

He's firmly on the same page as McAnaney who backs the creation of a new role for Quinn.

Promised

On Saturday, FAI Council members were told that it was Owens' suggestion to bring Quinn in and the line from the top table was that the combined salary for the interim CEO and interim deputy was smaller than the amount promised to John Foley before he turned down the chance to take temporary charge.

"Niall has also been the CEO of a Premiership club," continued McAnaney. "He is somebody who can mix easily with people, with stakeholders, with potential sponsors. And let's not forget Gary. Gary has done tremendous work.

"He is a football man and he has been involved with Down Syndrome Ireland and Athletics Ireland so we are getting good bang for our buck, albeit maybe a buck that we don't have. But you know what I'm saying.

"We can't measure everything in terms of financial worth because there is more to it. In our current situation in the FAI, we need whatever assistance we can get."

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