Minister for Sport Shane Ross has said that it would be “welcome” if Mick McCarthy took a voluntary pay cut given the financial crisis facing the FAI.
The FAI have liabilities of around €62m. At their reconvened AGM on Sunday, the association said they need €18m to prevent them from going into examinership or liquidation. They could not confirm if they have the funds to pay staff in January.
However, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has said that the government will not bail out the beleaguered association, but they are working with stakeholders to try to find a solution to the situation.
Ross said on Sunday night that the FAI entering examinership or being liquidated is not a “viable option.” He has now suggested that it would be “welcome” if McCarthy voluntarily cut his salary.
The Republic of Ireland manager is reportedly paid €1.2m a year and his contract expires when the Euro 2020 campaign ends – either in the spring should Ireland fail to reach the tournament or, if Ireland qualify, in the summer after the tournament ends. Stephen Kenny, the Ireland Under-21 manager, will succeed him in the position.
“Anybody who takes a pay cut in support of those who are less well-off than themselves you know is to be applauded,” Ross told the Irish Times on Monday.
“And I assumed that he would get paid more somewhere else or be in demand somewhere else, and it would be difficult for him to do that.”
However, the minister said he was not “calling on him to do it or not” as any pay cut would have to be voluntary.
Yet, he added that should someone within the association on a high salary willingly take a wage reduction it was “always going to be welcome.”
On Sunday evening, following their AGM, the FAI issued an apology to all those involved in Irish football, the wider Irish public and FAI staff members for “the mistakes of the past.”
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