Special K. That's the nickname which some St Patrick's Athletic fans attached to Garrett Kelleher since the property magnate took over the club in 2007 and began investing the funds which would yield a return of five trophies in a three-year period and a run of European qualification
hose in charge of the FAI right now could probably think of some other names they'd use to describe the Saints chairman.
That's after a letter, which was highly critical of the FAI's Gary Owens and Niall Quinn who he said "failed and failed badly", was made public.
Sources claim that Kelleher has for some time been doubtful of the FAI leadership's ability to get the League of Ireland back up and running after Covid-19. But it was a fraught meeting between senior FAI officials and League of Ireland club representatives on Friday, which was meant to pave the way for the LOI's return, which pushed Kelleher over the edge.
Kelleher admits in his letter that he had a "heated exchange with Owens" while in the meeting he accused Quinn of "dominating" speaking time and demanded a say as he was unhappy with the financial details in the FAI's plan.
"Friday was the tipping point," says a source who attended that conference call. "Garrett was already at the end of his tether. And Friday pushed him over the edge."
Kelleher's letter is 1,124 words long but some of those words will have caused the interim CEO and his deputy to flinch. He said he was "deeply concerned with the performance of current executives" and named Owens and Quinn.
"Zero has been delivered... media statements by the Deputy CEO in many instances have been ill-advised at best, and inappropriate... Gary and Niall have failed and failed badly... any more wrong or naive moves made by the executives could do even longer lasting damage... The CEO or Deputy CEO should never be a household media figure," Kelleher said in his mail which was sent on Monday. The personal nature of it raised eyebrows.
One senior FAI source said that while, in their view, Owens and Quinn had made mistakes in their attempts to get the League back up and running, sending a mail to just three board members asking them to intervene, and not the entire board, and then naming Owens and Quinn, made it personal. "You play the ball, not the man," an FAI insider said.
It should be remembered that while UEFA gave all national bodies an advance payment of €3.4million to deal with Covid-related costs, that money was not available to the FAI as the Delaney-era board had already drawn down the cash and spent it.
"The money is just not there and while Niall and Gary are working as hard as they can, they can't get blood from a stone," a source said.
Kelleher was known to be frustrated at the pace of the FAI's plans to reinstate the LOI after Covid-19 and the lack of detail.
Meetings billed as D-Day for the league's restart have come and gone and with still no package in place to cope with the loss of revenue from football behind closed doors or with reduced crowds. Kelleher's letter said the figures proposed by Owens and Quinn on Friday, to allow for a restart of the 2020 season, made no sense.
One assessment was that returning to play under the FAI's controversial plan would have led the Saints to lose €400,000 on the season.
When Kelleher first got involved with St Pat's in 2007, some supporters were concerned that a property developer, with no previous link to the club or even the League of Ireland, wanted to take them over.
The fact that their league-winning manager Brian Kerr, a godfather figure at the club with impeccable credentials, supported Kelleher won over a lot of sceptics.
At the time, Kerr said it was Kelleher's commitment to keeping Pat's in their Inchicore heartland, amid constant rumours of a move away from Emmet Road, which convinced him of Kelleher's interest.
Kerr said that while Irish people were at the time investing in English and Scottish clubs, "we have someone who has put his money where his mouth is, he wanted to put something back in."
Success followed, sparked by a Premier Division win in 2013 and a longed-for FAI Cup triumph in 2014.
The Saints chairman was not afraid to put his toe into FAI politics and Pat's took a brave stand in publicly criticising the FAI in 2016 over a controversial grant scheme for "strategic development". Only Derry City stood with them at the time.
Kelleher had shown he had a voice and was not afraid to use it. This week he's found his voice again and has inflicted a wound which Quinn and Owens are now trying to heal.