Euro Football

FAI reveals net liabilities of 55m euro

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The board of Football Association Ireland has confirmed that its former CEO John Delaney, who resigned in September, received a severance package of 462,000 euro.

The board of Football Association Ireland has confirmed that its former CEO John Delaney, who resigned in September, received a severance package of 462,000 euro.

The Football Association Ireland (FAI) has revealed that its current net liabilities amount to over 55 million euro (£46.3 million).

The board of FAI also confirmed that its former chief executive John Delaney, who resigned in September, received a severance package of 462,000 euro.

The accounts also revealed that, following an internal investigation addressing issues, the organisation “discovered transactions which were not reported in the financial statements for a number of years”.

The audit also stated that expenses during 2017 and 2016 by the former chief executive were of a personal nature.

These expenses, it said, have now been disclosed.

Auditor Deloitte said it had not obtained all the information and explanations it considered necessary for the purpose of its audit of the FAI’s finances.

The independent audit, which was commissioned on behalf of Sport Ireland, shows that the organisation has bank loans of 28.2 million euro.

Deloitte also said it was was unable to determine whether adequate accounting records had been kept and were also unable to report the disclosure of the directors’ remuneration and transactions.

The FAI had previously stated a profit of 2.8 million euro for 2017, however after adjustments of 5.6 million euro were made, they reported a loss of 2.9 million euro.

Fine Gael’s Noel Rock said the “stark accounts” of the FAI pose major concerns as to whether it can continue to function and meet its liabilities.

The Dublin North West TD said: “These accounts published today display huge debt burdens and come against the backdrop of the FAI losing its most lucrative commercial contract.

“It is a dark time for the administration of football in Ireland.

“There are numerous questions now that have to be answered about their financial obligations, commercial arrangements and how they intend to continue to function.

“Deloitte clearly decline to state that it is a going concern.

“This is a significant development as it will mean the FAI will find it difficult to obtain refinancing for its existing debt obligations.

“This is a concerning development for football fans. Answers and leadership are urgently needed.

“The hard-working staff, FAI coaches and volunteers across the country have been treated shambolically with this.

“Professional and diligent employees working for the better of Irish football have been left wondering about their livelihoods.

“It is simply not good enough and cannot be accepted at any level.”

Fianna Fail spokesperson on sport, Marc MacSharry, said the organisation’s accounts confirm the “worst fears” regarding its financial situation.

He said: “The accounts revealed are massively worrying for the future viability of the FAI.

“Questionable decisions have been made by people in leadership roles over the past number of years which have led to the financial crisis in the FAI revealed today.”

“The publication of the accounts comes after news FAI President Donal Conway will step down at the January EGM and confirmation that communications company Three will not be renewing their sponsorship deal with the organisation when the current deal ends in July next year.

“It shows the appalling state the FAI is in at present.

“There needs to be accountability and I will be working to establish what options are available in this regard but, we also need confidence restored in the FAI.”

Mr Delaney agreed in April to voluntarily step aside following disclosure of a 100,000 euro (£85,000) loan he gave to the FAI and that he made a series of payments from FAI funds that were not in the ordinary course of FAI business.

A number of investigations have since been launched into the financial affairs of the FAI, amid concerns that Mr Delaney failed to use his credit card properly and failed to control his personal expenses.

The audit was referred to An Garda Siochana last month.

PA

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