Should he stay or should he go? FAI meeting could hinge on financial pay off
The decision by the FAI to cancel the scheduled press conference today has left many to wonder will Giovanni Trapattoni leave now or will he be allowed to see out his contract.
Back-to-back defeats have seen Irish dreams of making Rio all but disappear and this campaign has had its fair share of scares. A late, late winner in Astana, a heavy defeat to Germany and strong criticism of player selection by sections of the supporters, Trap knew that only qualification would see him remain in his post, practically admitting as much prior to the game in Vienna.
The nature of the defeats has been as difficult as the results themselves and with that in mind, the FAI issued a statement last night to state that today’s press conference would be postponed.
“The recent results against Sweden and Austria were very disappointing for everyone involved in Irish football, the manager, the players and supporters,” read the statement on the FAI website.
“Our aim of qualification, although mathematically possible, is now highly unlikely even though the team will always do everything within their power to keep that hope alive. The FAI Board of Management will now consider the current position over the coming days.
“The post-match press conference which was due to take place this afternoon in Dublin has been cancelled.”
This is of course the second time this course of events has occurred in this campaign and many expected that Trapattoni would be removed this first time it happened following the win against the Faroe Islands, but the board decided against and showed faith to a manager that steered us to the European Championships and a
hand whisker away from the World Cup in South Africa.
Feeling the strain in Vienna
Some believe that the major sticking point now boils down to financials. It would cost the FAI around €900,000 to pay up the remainder of Trapattoni’s €1.2m-a-year contract, which is half-funded by businessman Denis O’Brien, to bring an end to his five-and-a-half-year spell in charge.
So the question is now whether the FAI feels the benefit to bringing in a new manager now, to bed into the position before the European Championship qualifying, is worth such an outlay.
When the FAI are to meet to “consider” Trap’s position is unclear, but it now looks like the Italian’s stay has come to an end after a roller-coaster five years at the helm.