“From our side nothing has been decided”

There seems to be conflicting news coming out regarding the issue of the FAI drafting players from throughout the island of Ireland. The Irish Independent reports that FIFA has now decided “the FAI, who may no longer quote the Good Friday Agreement as an excuse for drafting up players born on the island of Ireland” while the Belfast Telegraph says that from now on the FAI “can only call on players born in the Republic, or whose parents, or grandparents, are born in the Republic or where the player concerned has lived for two years in the country”.

But the Irish Times and FIFA are saying something completely different. Update: The IFA have now confirmed FIFA have yet to decide on the matter.

The paper reports that the FAI:

described as “good and constructive” its meeting with Fifa yesterday in relation to the eligibility of players born in the North to play for the Republic. A four-strong delegation from Merrion Square came away from Zurich with a commitment that there will be no retrospective changes to the current position. The status of Darron Gibson has, therefore, been resolved.

Beyond that, it remains to be seen what attitude Fifa’s legal people will take to the IFA’s claim that the terms of the political settlement in Northern Ireland altered the situation. “We need some time to review all of the information that has been presented at these meetings,” said a spokesman for Fifa yesterday.

Slugger gave FIFA a quick call and was informed that as this issue has refused to go away for quite a while now, FIFA decided last August to call in both organisations for a final round of talks. The IFA set out their stall in Zurich last week while the FAI put forward their view on Monday.

The spokesman repeated what the Irish Times reported, namely that it first needs to review the information it received at these two meetings, which could take days or even weeks, before making a decision.

“From our side, nothing has been decided,” said FIFA.

Hopefully, we all won’t have to wait too long to have a definitive and final ruling on this issue.

UPDATE: The IFA have come out and said that media reports saying FIFA has ruled on the matter are “premature”.

“FIFA has told us that they will make a judgement before the end of October and we have not yet heard anything from them,” said IFA chief Howard Wells.

So it seems the BBC, the Belfast Telegraph and the Irish Independent are the ones with questions to answer over their reporting of this matter.

Also, to the best of my knowledge the latest BBC report which contains the IFA statement is also inaccurate in that it says FIFA has yet to rule on the “Gibson case”. Gibson has already been cleared to play for the Republic of Ireland as, whatever it decides, FIFA won’t act retrospectively.

  • Garcia

    Concerned Loyalist

    Yes they should find an alternative to the Soldier’s Song as we should for GSTQ.
    They also should have protected those protestants within their territory during the troubles too. But what, exactly, has this to do with football mate?

    Garcia

  • Garcia

    Dr Who to advise the IFA on our new anthem – the chap has v good taste!!!
    (tho id move Girl from Mars up to 3rd place meself 😉

  • mh87

    No protestant in the south have ever said they want the anthem changed anyway they are a tiny population nationalists are over 40 per cent in the north a bit differnt no

  • Garcia

    mh87

    Fair point. Just my view that an all-lreland team isnt possible while that was the case. No offence meant 🙂

    Garcia

  • mh87

    Thats fine im ok with their being two teams its just i think players should have a right to decide what team they want to play for.Oh and if GSTQ is changed they will be a lot less players going over but i still think its not in the interest of the north to have players who dont have the passion from the team at the end of the day it could backfire for you guys

  • Garcia

    mh87

    Speaking as an individual NI fan, nothing more, I only want to see players that are NI through and through. If someone wants to play for the RoI(despite all the yooff NI training) so be it.

    Dont get your point abt GSTQ, can you clarify?

    Garcia.

  • mh87

    If their is a new anthem their will be less players from nationalist backrounds wainting to play for the republic in my opinion it should have been changed ages ago.

  • Garcia

    mh87

    Okay. Take care mate 🙂

    Garcia.

  • USA

    I see the young “texting / bebo” crowd have joined us, bringing “their” unique vernacular.
    On the topic, I believe FIFA cannot act outside international law. Any Irish citizen who choses to play for RoI has the legal right to do so as long as they have not previously played for another country as outlined in FIFA guidelines. There is no way FIFA can stop Irish born people playing for RoI, it would not hold up under GFA and perhaps EU legislation. If FIFA ruled against FAI I would expect a strong nationalist counter attack in the political world part of which would be a legal challange.
    I would agree the north should change its anthem, I also feel the rugby team needs to find one agreed anthem and stop playing the Soldiers Song in Dublin. Ultimatley I would have one national soccer team on the island which would also make all this infighting redundant. How many Irish teams qualified for the European Championships….oh that’s right….NONE.

  • Briso

    Posted by Doctor Who on Oct 24, 2007 @ 12:23 AM
    >All of a sudden the same cretins who have been slating OWC on these threads for the last two
    >years are now saying they really loved OWC but not anymore because the IFA have somehow denied
    >them Irish citizenship.

    Posted by Concerned Loyalist on Oct 24, 2007 @ 01:03 AM
    >Football unites divided people behind a common goal and non-educated, delinquent, bigot fucks
    >like you two have no place playing, spectating or commenting on “The beautiful game”…

    So I’m a cretin, ‘non-educated, delinquent, bigot fuck’ and a liar. Using the tackle metaphor so beloved of Mick, those are elbows in the face off the ball.

    The wierdest thing is, I actually agree with CL about GSTQ etc. For me, NI is a partitionist team. It IS British. That’s why, although I wish(ed) it well, it could never be my team, not least because it’s not my country. But in those circumstances, why not fly the Union Jack and sing God Save the Queen? It doesn’t annoy me because it doesn’t represent me, my nationality, my identity. I was happy to cheer on Healy etc. But if these reports are right, the IFA are trying to take my national team away from me. My Irish Citizen children would not be eligible to play for Ireland. So, stuff the IFA and Northern Ireland. Worst of luck to them ad infinitum.

  • Bemused

    The wierdest thing is, I actually agree with CL about GSTQ etc. For me, NI is a partitionist team. It IS British. That’s why, although I wish(ed) it well, it could never be my team, not least because it’s not my country. But in those circumstances, why not fly the Union Jack and sing God Save the Queen? It doesn’t annoy me because it doesn’t represent me, my nationality, my identity. I was happy to cheer on Healy etc. But if these reports are right, the IFA are trying to take my national team away from me. My Irish Citizen children would not be eligible to play for Ireland. So, stuff the IFA and Northern Ireland. Worst of luck to them ad infinitum.

    Posted by Briso on Oct 24, 2007 @ 08:50 AM

    Hear, hear Briso. I would have had a similarly benign attitude to the Northern Ireland team – now I wouldn’t piss on them if they were on fire. The IFA don’t seem to have grasped just how much damage they’ve now done to their standing within the middle-of-the-road Northern constitutional nationalist constituency.

  • Paul

    As a GAA fan, I’m happy.

    The IFA’s posturing will alienate the whole Nationalist community.

    Our youth will be more likely to commit to the more exciting game of gaelic football, rather than play snoozeball in a league organised by this bunch who appear unable to accept that NI Nationalists identify with the Ireland team.

  • Bemused

    Christ – that’s all we need – bog-ball and stick-fighting benefiting from the actions of the bigots in the IFA……….

  • Briso

    >Posted by Bemused on Oct 24, 2007 @ 09:03 AM
    >Christ – that’s all we need – bog-ball and stick-
    >fighting benefiting from the actions of the
    >bigots in the IFA……….

    Indeed, it’s going to be even more uphill now. 🙁

  • Dev

    I know there’ll be a separate thread for this later but…..STAUNTON IS GONE…..thank god for that!

    Also, totally agree with those posters you suggest replacing GSTQ with Alternative Ulster.

  • gram

    This crazy ruling by FIFA will deny nationalist kids the option of playing football for Northern Ireland when they realise they are not of a high enough standard to play for the Republic.

  • darth rumsfeld

    “This crazy ruling by FIFA will deny nationalist kids the option of playing football for Northern Ireland when they realise they are not of a high enough standard to play for the Republic.”

    spot on gram

    Now they’ll never get the chance to scrape a last minute equaliser against the mighty Cyprus, or scramble a late winner against footballing giants San Marino- they’ll have to make do with beating Spain or Sweden. The poor wee dotes….

  • Paul

    Given FIFA’s clarification, has anybody any idea why the BBC NI news page is still running this factually incorrect story?

    Did they bother checking the facts tehmeselves, or do they merely reprint what the anti NI Nationalist Indo stable print?

  • Billy

    Darth

    I think you’ll find that those days are over with the belated but welcome demise of Staunton.

    Similarly, NI have had their day in the sun under Sanchez. I see that things are returning to normal under Worthington.

    There is no doubt that NI have been the better of the 2 for the last 18 months or so (although I believe that the RoI have already moved back above NI in the world rankings).

    It would be churlish not to acknowledge the excellent results and performances that NI achieved under Sanchez.

    However, if you analyse the performances of the 2 countries over the last 20 years or so, I think you’ll find the the RoI have been a class above NI for the vast majority of that time.

    Assuming they appoint a decent manager this time, with the pool of excellent young players at their disposal I think the RoI will again qualify for the major tournaments.

    As for NI, I’m afraid (with their rag bag of lower division and non-league players backing up their very few class players), it’ll be back to the usual diet of non-qualification and living on the memories of world cup finals well over 20 years ago.

  • mh87

    darth i know poor them know they will have to face being beaten by giants of the sport like iceland and latvia

  • Democratic

    I have to say that as a Northern Ireland supporter that the bile being thrown in my teams direction from some of our staunch Republic fan posters (most of which are from Northern Ireland it appears) is having a similar effect on my feelings as those who claim to have been middle of the road but now detest Northern Ireland. Worst fo luck to your lot too from someone you just didn’t care about you before (I won’t claim to ever have been a 2nd team supporter or any other such crap)- hope Wales piss on you…. BTW – if you really expected the IFA to bend over and be shafted by the FAI in their own juristiction over Catholic/Nationalist players in our midst (lets face it these are the only players the ROI seem to be interested in approaching) without asking for official clarification from FIFA – then you must need your head read. A lose-lose situation for Northern Ireland damned if you do – damned if you don’t. I remember the detractors on here not long ago saying how the “monumental” Gibson case would herald the end for the 6 county bigots etc, etc. and would result in Northern Ireland becoming a loyalist team full of “Ultra” supporters and eventually lead to their dissolution. Then when the IFA complain about this possibility it just confirms their bigotry as Anti-Catholic, Anti-Irish human rights infringeing barstewards!!! – well f*ck the lot of youse from now on – I for one am sick of arguing with closed minds – youse can consider me “hostile” from now on just like yourselves.

  • Billy

    Democratic

    So what! You’ll fit in with the vast majority of NI fans then – they have always felt like that.

    If the IFA and NI “fans” are so fair, why did we have decades of blatent anti-Catholicism on display at Windsor which was pretty much encouraged by the IFA?

    Are you really surprised that the majority of NI Catholics support and would wish to play for the RoI after the way they have been treated?

    As an earlier poster said, the NI fans on here (clearly 90%+ “Loyalist”) have NO IDEA of the way this is being seen by the moderate nationalist community.

    I don’t claim to be impartial about NI (I don’t want anything to do with them). However, I know plenty of youger fans who are pretty ambivalent about NI and would have given them a chance.

    However, this tactic by the IFA to force Catholics to either play for NI and endure GSTQ, NO SURRENDER, SECTARIAN CHANTS etc or have no international career – has made the position very clear.

    In one way, it’s a good thing. This will really open the eyes of those Catholics who were fooled by the fraudulent “football for all” camapign. I think only the very foolish can now fail to see the attitude of the IFA to Catholic players and fans.

    Whatever way FIFA rule, this has done irrepairable damage to the fraudulent efforts of the IFA and “GAWA” to portray NI suport as non-sectarian where Catholics are welcome and not seen as “second-class”.

    If nothing else, it’s good to get this out in the open and expose the IFA and “GAWA” for what they really are.

  • Feck who knew so many nationalists where so friendly towards NI, I guess even in the million other threads when you guys where hurling your vitrol on the Northern Ireland team you where secretly supporting us? Typical shinners making every unionist mole hill a Mount Everest or pain and repression, the victim sharade us getting tiresome now fellas.

    As for the Republic you may well have got rid of Staunton but who ever comes in has the same shoddy material to work with. And it’ll only be a matter of time before another loyal RoI fan tries to put a gun in the new managers face.

  • Democratic

    “I don’t claim to be impartial about NI (I don’t want anything to do with them).”
    Yeah Billy – this is the stand out quote for me that just puts you firmly in the propagandist box. A month or so ago I would have taken the time to correct each point of your pathetic rant -now – you can just stroll on pal – and take you your opportunist bile with you. C’mon the Welsh!

  • as tic

    “Given FIFA’s clarification, has anybody any idea why the BBC NI news page is still running this factually incorrect story?”

    Because they are the BBC?

  • Briso

    Posted by Pounder on Oct 24, 2007 @ 11:19 AM
    Feck who knew so many nationalists where so friendly towards NI, I guess even in the million other threads when you guys where hurling your vitrol on the Northern Ireland team you where secretly supporting us? Typical shinners making every unionist mole hill a Mount Everest or pain and repression, the victim sharade us getting tiresome now fellas.

    Are you talking to me? I didn’t spit vitriol at your team, and nor do I remember Frank Sinistra doing so either. And I’m not a bloody Shinner!!! Billy speaks for himself.

    This outcome has made my children ineligible to play for Ireland, my country, of which I am a full citizen. Understand? It does absolutely nothing for you except force those who wouldn’t choose to play for you anyway, to do so or forego international football.

  • Dec

    As for the Republic you may well have got rid of Staunton but who ever comes in has the same shoddy material to work with.

    Personally Pounder I’d take the ROI squad over the NI squad every day of the week, as would most right-thinking people (sadly excluding the GAWA). It’s never a good sign when your midfield general plys his trade in League 1 now, is it?

    And it’ll only be a matter of time before another loyal RoI fan tries to put a gun in the new managers face.

    Shame that moron didn’t phone in a death threat against a player then we could have dismissed it as a joke, eh?

  • “However, this tactic by the IFA to force Catholics to either play for NI and endure GSTQ, NO SURRENDER, SECTARIAN CHANTS etc or have no international career”

    If players turn out for NI and endures sectarian chants/abuse and/or sectarianism generally they can take that matter up with UEFA/FIFA. We’ve seen with Rangers and Celtic that UEFA are taking a hard line on that and the same should apply to the behaviour NI ‘fans’ at matches.

    Discussions on anthems are for another day. Sadly the actions of the FAI have meant there hasn’t been time to find a decent alternative before the IFA had to take this defensive action.

    Democratic is spot on though. If this had gone unchecked it could have led to the IFA team’s demise or their transformation into a loyalist-only side. As much as I feel many hear would like that, it’s not what the IFA want and it’s not what the fans want and wouldn’t be good for anyone in the long run.

  • Greenflag

    ‘If this had gone unchecked it could have led to the IFA team’s demise or their transformation into a loyalist-only side. As much as I feel many hear would like that, it’s not what the IFA want and it’s not what the fans want and wouldn’t be good for anyone in the long run.’

    Fair point. How many of the current NI team are ‘loyalists ‘ ? How many are ‘nationalists
    Does anyone know ? What would be wrong with a ‘loyalist’ only team ? At least all the team members would feel comfortable standing for GSTQ .
    The Republic would also gain a new ‘reservoir’ of badly needed talent .

    GF .

    Both teams at best will remain as also rans in most international competitions simply because soccer in Ireland North and South is not ‘wealthy’ enough to keep the local talent here .

    Whatever happened to the great ‘idea’ of an English Premier Club setting up in Dublin . It would be at least one way of developing a fan base for the sport?

  • Mark Fartlighter

    Beano,

    “If this had gone unchecked it could have led to the IFA team’s demise or their transformation into a loyalist-only side”

    I spoke to a number of nationalist football fans last night to get the footy fans view.

    Frankly, people are extremely angry about this, even non football fans, so I would have to say that the ‘bow down before thy queen papist’ approach will have the same effect now. The Irish have the peverse tendency to want to do the opposite those in authority want them to.

    The delight expressed by unionist posters only antagonises people further.

    Why fear free choice? Would it have not been better to use powers of persuasion?

    I think this is ultimately a sign of weakness rather than strength.

  • Juan Kerr

    ‘Again I ask you CAN ANYONE OF YOU GIVE ME THE NAME OF ANYONE PAST OR PRESENT WHO HAS BEEN FORCED TO PLAY FOR NORTHERN IRELAND, IF NOT GO AWAY BACK UNDER YOUR SECTARIAN STONE’.

    …er, isn’t that the whole point, that from now on, if this supposed ‘ruling’ by FIFA (which, let’s face it, has no chance whatsoever of being enforced, as FIFA cannot overrule what effectively is an international peace treaty) were to go ahead, it WOULD effectively force players (deemed good enough for international selection) to play for NI who don’t want to.

    That’s what’s been discussed for the whole thread.

  • Dec

    Sadly the actions of the FAI have meant there hasn’t been time to find a decent alternative before the IFA had to take this defensive action.

    Beano

    What took them so long? Gibson declared for the Republic over 2 years ago.

    Anyway, I’ve yet to see any official decision by FIFA but even if they do rule in favour of the IFA, this will be challenged and eventually overturned (apart from anything else it would directly contradict their guidelines and a letter from FIFA’s Legal Department sent to both associations last year which confirmed dual eligibility) and all the IFA will have done is alienate almost half the community here.

  • darth rumsfeld

    “How many of the current NI team are ‘loyalists ‘ ? How many are ‘nationalists
    Does anyone know ?”

    Maybe not a big help, but Keef Gillespie is apparently a big fan of the monster raving loony party….:0)

    Y’know, every time one of these threads comes up, the sheer panic on the part of some MOPE posters is so obvious. They just can’t accept that Northern Ireland football- like NI itself – has a considerably greater degree of goodwill from RC/nationalist people than they can muster. Kills the pipedream of our inevitable demise you see

    It’s like the old rhetoric of “a Protestant state for a Protestant people” that they trot out, even while their representatives are now ministers in a partitionist administration.

    You’re so embarassingly out of touch with reality. 40% of people vote nationalist/republican, but there’s never been a single opinion poll on their sporting allegiance, and much as you might wish it otherwise, they’re freethinking human beings- just like the boys from Ashfield secondary school who play Gaelic as school. I’ve no idea if 1% or 99% support NI- and nor does anyone else. People aren’t a volk.

    I bet you all supported NI for 90 minutes against England- heck, you’d support Iran or North Korea against England ( I’d have to think about it a bit too).

    Five years ago noone on the Falls Road would have supported Linfield, but I bet the McAreavey and Downey extended families are at least neutral to them.Gerry Armstrong could be SF deputy first minister for all I care, but he’ll always be proud of the GAWA support he gets/got- and we’re proud of him.

    The point is- you’re trying too hard, lads

  • Dec

    Nice speech Darth. Pity that it was entirely irrelevant. Still, can’t expect too much from someone who thinks The Jam were New Wave. The issue here is forcing people against their will. Not who supports who or who plays gaelic.

  • Briso

    Darth wrote: They just can’t accept that Northern Ireland football- like NI itself – has a considerably greater degree of goodwill from RC/nationalist people than they can muster.

    And this action by the IFA, do you think it increases or decreases goodwill fom the ‘RC/nationalist peaople’?

  • Doctor Who

    billy

    I am still waiting for you to give me the name of one single Nationalist NI player who was forced to play for NI.

    If you can´t post with an open mind, maybe you should step back from the keyboard and lay down.

  • No Dozer

    Once again the same old rant about G.S.T.Q. at Windsor Park rears it’s ugly head and all those nasty sectarian N.I. supporters. No mention of Unionists who support the “Ireland” rugby team having to endure the S.S. at Landsdowne for donkey’s years. No mention of the I.R.F.U. politicising rugby and offending a large section of their supporters by denying them parity of esteem regarding flags and emblems. None at all.

    Maybe if the N.I. assembly lasts for a few years republicans will realise that we are normal people who don’t have two heads and that we will not accept second best when it comes to things which we hold dear.

  • Gréagóir O’ Frainclín

    Irish Nationalists should support the NI soccer team wholeheartedly, and why not? The bad old days of sectarianism are over. The NI soccer team just doesn’t belong only to Unionists (although they’d like to think so). Pehaps the GSTQ anthem and flag should be dropped too, so as not to offend the NI supporters from an Irish Nationalist background. Maybe the Gibson decision by FIFA is a cock up oblivious to the GFA or else those great plolitical scientists who are steering NI into a new era have someting to do with it. Irish Nationalists support the Northern Irish soccer team now!

  • Mark Fartlighter

    Darth,

    Non-scientifically speaking I have only ever meet one Catholic who supported Northern Ireland, he also decribed himself as British.

    I have never met any nationalist who said they support Northern Ireland. Only my experience but.

  • Mark Fartlighter

    Gréagóir O’ Frainclín,

    I am not a football supporter, dont support the Republic either, I only arguing for choice.

    But with regards to your point, supporting Northern Ireland means God Save the Queen and the Union Jack, neither of which I have a problem with, indeed even in a United Ireland I cannot see why the Northern Ireland team could not remain in existance with that flag and anthem, just as Wales has a team now.

    But for me to stand singing God Save the Queen under the Union Jack would be extremely dishonest.

    I am disloyal to the union and the queen and I have wrote to her in this respect and freely admit ‘treason’in her terms.

    Frankly, I’d rather die than stand singing God Save the Queen, although others should have the right to and I do not call for its replacement as Northern Ireland’s anthem – its none of my business.

  • rubin

    ‘Frankly, I’d rather die than stand singing God Save the Queen, although others should have the right to and I do not call for its replacement as Northern Ireland’s anthem – its none of my business.’

    Recent advice from n.i supporters suggested that Catholics who attend games should wait outside the ground or behind the stands until gstq & ‘no surrender’ chants were finished.

  • Doctor Who

    Juan Kerr

    You really do show your ignorance. The gentlemens agreement between the two associations not to pick each others players goes back to the fifties when the two associations where last summonsed to FIFA.

    At that time both sides called themselves Ireland, the Northern side pobably with more right to do so.

    The FAI have gone back on this agreement, similarly when they used the granny born in the North before partition rule.

    Anyone born in NI always had the right to claim Irish citizenship, and to carry an Irish passport. The GFA clarifies that in NI you can consider yourself Irish, British or both. Of course there is no such thing as a NI passport. I carry a British passport but it doesn´t make me less Irish than you or perhaps you beg to differ.

    The GFA has no baring on the jurisdictions of the Football Associations on this island, which are like the soverignty of the island i.e. seperated. There is nothing stopping anyone playing for NI from expressing their Irishness it in fact enhances it.

    So far in the modern era, one single player from NI with no connections with ROI has played for ROI, for twenty minutes or so. So where you get the idea that thousands of players are being denied the right to play for their country is just silly.

    Players from nationalist/Catholic backgrounds have always played for NI and have been proud to do so, our most capped player is big Pat Jennings, our most famous goal was scored by the legend Gerry Armstrong. Whilst not wishing to bracket players, the NI youth teams are brimming with young talent from Catholic backgrounds and why not. Why should the IFA nurture this talent only to lose it from aggresive poaching from the FAI.

    The FAI cares nothing for the GFA, it is just a means to where they could stretch their policy of widening their own selection goal posts. Most young nationalists know this and will continue to play for NI proudly and with pride.

    The IFA have made great strides to rid the game here of sectarianism, only a fool could not praise their efforts. They are not denying anyones right of Nationality, they don´t have that power. They are simply protecting their stock form being plundered by an agressive neighbour.

    The FAI have used a political settlement meant to bring the people of NI more together to suit their own selfish needs, you would have to be a brain damaged moron or the victim of a cruel medical experiment, not to see that they are openly playing the green mopery card without caring about the consequences.

    Again I ask can anyone name a single player past or present who qualifies to play for NI but refuses on the grounds of Nationality.

    Onwards and Upwards.

  • Gréagóir O’ Frainclín

    Well, as I have already said, then maybe these NI representative symbols should be changed so not to offend and so as to represent the 2 main communities of NI. After all the ‘Soldiers Song’ and the Tri-Colour has been accordingly and rightly so dropped by the IRFU so as not to offend UK Unionists who support the Irish rugby team.

  • rubin

    Bizarre decision, if actually true.

    Almost every other sport on the island operates on an all island basis, yet football authorities would ban players from representing their country.

    I suppose after watching the recent programme of wide scale corruption and theft within FIFA, nothing is surprising.

    Perhaps a few backhanders made a difference 🙂

  • iluvni

    After all the ‘Soldiers Song’ and the Tri-Colour has been accordingly and rightly so dropped by the IRFU so as not to offend UK Unionists who support the Irish rugby team.

    Posted by Gréagóir O’ Frainclín on Oct 24, 2007 @ 02:25 PM

    …as will be demonstrated when Ireland line up under the Tricolour and stand to the Soldiers Song in the next 6Nations match at Croke Park, early 2008!

  • Doctor Who

    rubin

    No one is stopping anyone from representing their country. While you may think that NI should not exist it does, even the Shinners recognise it does and administers rule here.

    Supporting NI has not made me less Irish just like the players.

  • Doctor Who

    Gréagóir O’ Frainclín

    “After all the ‘Soldiers Song’ and the Tri-Colour has been accordingly and rightly so dropped by the IRFU so as not to offend UK Unionists who support the Irish rugby team.”

    I take it you are being ironic with this post.

  • mh87

    iluvni so your saying that for the sake of a minority of what 15 to 20 per cent we should not play or anthem at home come on if it is so painful why not a NI rugby team

  • Doctor Who

    mh87

    The point in Rugby is that the IRFU deemed Ireland´s recent match against Italy in Belfast was deemed an away match, in order to avoid playing GSTQ, which was originally agreed.

    As for why not a NI rugby side, well that´s an argument for another day.

  • Doctor Who

    Rubin

    “Perhaps a few backhanders made a difference :)”

    Don´t be silly the IFA have been saving the coppers for a replacement roof for Windsor Park´s North stand.

    The skullduggery in this sorry affair has always emanated from Merrion Square.

  • mh87

    Doctor Who No one is saying nationalist players should not play for the NI side but what i would like to see is a right to chose thats all how does that put your team in danger most players of a nationalist backround would stick with NI because the set up seems better that the republic i honestly cant see the problem.The republic should drop the SS on condition the north drop GSTQ hows about it

  • mh87

    look the republic should drop the SS if you get rid of GSTQ i dont get you how would this put you team in danger most players from a nationalist backround would probably still go with NI all i want is a right to chose thats all dont want to see the end of any team.

  • iluvni

    Its all about respecy, mh87. There exists precious little of that towards the status of Northern Ireland from both the FAI and the IRFU.

    One deems Belfast as an away venue to weasel out of a long standing agreement on flags and anthems, whilst the other uses the GFA to try to walk all over the IFA with regard to players, knowing full well that winning this one would see our team potentially destroyed. Friendly neighbours, eh?

    Shameful behaviour, tantamount to bullying really.

    Lets hope in the end FIFA do indeed come down in the favour of the IFA, but until I read it I wont be satisified they have. Decency dictates they do.

  • mh87

    sorry for the double post

  • darth rumsfeld

    “Still, can’t expect too much from someone who thinks The Jam were New Wave.”

    sheesh! I was there sonny. I’m in “Shellshock Rock”- well the back of me head is anyway.
    The Jam toured with the Buzzcocks and the Clash on a… new wave package. Yeah they diverged into a mod revivalist phase, but new wave covered everything from the Boomtown Rats (better than they’re remembered) to the cartoon punks Sham 69 (worse). See ? Trying too hard again cos you’re scared of reality.

    mark- I know several nationalists from Coleraine who are NI( and Celtic) fans- though they are older- er.. my contemporaries I guess, who sit behind me in the south stand on a block booking and have since the 1990s at least. So what?

    “And this action by the IFA, do you think it increases or decreases goodwill fom the ‘RC/nationalist people’?”

    …well it wasn’t a fight the IFA started, and they’re entitled to- no , obliged to- defend themselves. End of.
    But of course we shouldn’t be fighting. So ask the FAI why they started poaching our players if they are our friendly neighbours

  • Mark Fartlighter

    iluvni,

    ‘decency’

    Surely it would be the decent thing to do to simply allow people to chose, NI or ROI?

    “Shameful behaviour, tantamount to bullying really”

    It is you are oppose giving people the right to play for the ‘country’ they most identify with and are citizens off.

    Its just about choice -why fear people’s free will?

  • Mark Fartlighter

    Darth,

    “our players”

    Again a question free will, you don’t own young nationalist who happen to be good a football.

    I find that expression almost frightening, I sicerely hope that it is a football thing.

  • janeymac

    iluvni
    “Its all about respecy, mh87. There exists precious little of that towards the status of Northern Ireland from both the FAI and the IRFU.”

    I don’t know too much about this subject but have seen a lot of discussion on various message boards over the last year or so. Am I just daft in thinking that the IRFU were being respectful of the GFA by deciding not to play GSTQ / fly the Union Flag as if they did they would have had to play the SS/fly the Tricolour? Am I right in thinking that sometime back that there was a similar incident involving the playing of GSTQ at Queens for a graduation ceremony when the Palace instructed that GSTQ not be played?

    The decision not to play GSTQ at Ravenhill for the Italy game was made prior to the St. Andrews Meeting where a lot of fairly strong ‘incentives’ to focus minds such as if the two main parties would not go into office, the Union Flag & Tricolour would be flown over Stormont. I’d appreciate if someone could clear this up for me.

    Thanks.

  • Dec

    Darth

    Tour names or not, the fact that the classic line-up of the Jam were gigging in 1976 means they were Punk not New Wave (of Punk – geddit?). You’ll be telling us the Stooges were grunge next.
    Anyways back to the point:

    So ask the FAI why they started poaching our players if they are our friendly neighbours

    Oh, some consistency on this would be helpful. You were earlier claiming that Gibson left after being mistreated by the IFA ( to quote Jonny evans)and now it’s ‘poaching our players’. Surely ‘your players’ are the ones that want to play for NI. Concentrate on them, eh? (To quote today’s Irish News editorial)

    Ps I’m losing count of the number of Catholics you personally know that follow NI – what is it…17/18000?

  • kensei

    “If it is the former, then the FAI should feel free to select from the North. If it is the latter, then it shouldn’t.

    For the record, I think it’s the latter. And I suspect FIFA will too. ”

    What you and the IFA are doing there, IJP is attacking at a fundamental level my citizenship of the Republic of Ireland. It is completely and totally against everything the last 15 years of the peace process has been about. Fuck you, and fuck the IFA. I had moved to apathy, from loathing because of the sickening loyalist chants, considering the strides they’ve made, but after this? Fuck them.

    I don’t give a shit about “Northern Ireland”. I would be happy to see it go tomorrow and would do anything legal within my power to make it so. I care not one jot for its institutions, its symbols, the “Our Wee Country” bollocks, the football team or any other team. You name it, I don’t care. I suffer it simply because I respect the democratic system, and I expect others to do too if the circumstances change.

    I care not one jot for you’re distinction. The question is simple: am I an Irish citizen or not? I am glad to see you and your Unionist Lite vision exposed despite all the bollocks rhetoric and posturing.

    I’d like to see if this has been confirmed or not, because then I have a great deal of political representatives to write to. I sincerely doubt this could stand a legal challenge in the European courts.

    How dare the IFA try to tell me or anyone else my nationality. How fucking dare they.

  • Oh for christ’s sake boys pick the toys up and put them back in the pram. Nobody’s telling you your nationality. You’re Irish. Fine.

    The IFA still have responsibility for football in Northern Ireland though. The Republic of Ireland team is not an all-Ireland team and no amount of temper tantrums will change that.

    A British passport holder can’t pick and choose which British team to play for and an Irish passport holder can’t pick and choose which Irish team to play for.

  • Briso

    It’s in the Irish Times too, Kensei.

  • The Spectator

    BBC now claim that Howard Wells said no announcment has been amde yet and the news headlines are premature…

    curiouser and curiouser – is someone trying to hand FIFA a fair accompli?

  • kensei

    “Oh for christ’s sake boys pick the toys up and put them back in the pram. Nobody’s telling you your nationality. You’re Irish. Fine.”

    Yes they are. They are insisting in football terms, I am “Northern Irish” which I most certainly am not.

    “The IFA still have responsibility for football in Northern Ireland though. The Republic of Ireland team is not an all-Ireland team and no amount of temper tantrums will change that.”

    No, but as an Irish citizenship I should have the right to play for the country for which I have citizenship and affinity too. Otherwise it defeats the fucking point of international competition.

    “A British passport holder can’t pick and choose which British team to play for and an Irish passport holder can’t pick and choose which Irish team to play for. ”

    Actually, as has been pointed out in this thread, some British passport holders can.

    Fuck the IFA.

    “It’s in the Irish Times too, Kensei.”

    Link?

  • darth rumsfeld

    “our players”

    Again a question free will, you don’t own young nationalist who happen to be good a football.
    I find that expression almost frightening, I sicerely hope that it is a football thing.”

    AAaaaaaargh

    Ok Ok- The players who live in the occupied six counties or are descended from people who do/did.
    If I don’t see the border as a porous or optional barrier then tough. If yer from Newry or yer granny’s from Strabane, yer a potential NI player- and only that, unless like Joe Kinnear yer other granny’s from Dundalk and you are a dual national. If you want to play for someone else, tough. Kenny Dalglish wanted to play for Rangers. Did he take up shinty when an inferior rival gave him a shirt?

    “the fact that the classic line-up of the Jam were gigging in 1976 means they were not New Wave (of Punk – geddit?).”
    Yeah, and Leo Sayer was gigging in 76 too. If they were punks why did Joe Strummer sneer “They got Burton suits- they think it’s funny, turning rebellion into money”?

    “Ps I’m losing count of the number of Catholics you personally know that follow NI – what is it…17/18000?”
    No- only 4, but again I don’t know all of the people who sit in the Alex Russell Stand or where they go on Sundays. I also know a man who supports Linfield and Glasgow Celtic. I don’t make assumptions about people. Except -of course-that Man Utd fans are all morons

    “You were earlier claiming that Gibson left after being mistreated by the IFA ( to quote Jonny evans)and now it’s ‘poaching our players’. Surely ‘your players’ are the ones that want to play for NI”
    Tony Kane is another example, along with other unknowns- looks like a policy to me.

  • Tochais Síoraí

    Hypothethical situation. Bear with me. It’s 2030 (3030 if you prefer). There are two political entities and two international football teams in these islands, Ireland (32c) and Great Britain.

    Trevor from Ballymena is a decent player. Doesn’t fancy playing for Ireland, feels they don’t represent his identity, he doesn’t like the anthem and flag, he has a British passport and he wants to play for Britain, the team he supports. He’s getting flak from the Irish Football Federation for his decision, but he’s made his mind up. GB want him and World Football (FIFA was dissolved in 2014 because it was totally corrupt) have been called in.

    Well, whaddaya reckon…?

  • The Spectator

    well, If Britain gives him citizenship and a passport ‘as of birthright’, then yeah, why not? He’s british, let him.

  • Cromwell

    Billy;
    “I can’t imagine why anyone who reads your posts on Slugger would think that”

    Care to qualify that, I asked you on another thread & still no answer!

    Silly Billy again;
    “Personally, after my experiences in Windsor Park in the 70s, 80s and 90s, I would never support NI or encourage any Catholic to so do.”

    My God Billy youre a bit of a slow learner arent you, 3 decades attending Windsor Park, to figure out that Northern Ireland fans are, according to you, a bunch of bigots.
    Not unless youre telling porky-pies Billy, like we caught you out before!
    Pretty much proves who the real bigot is……..Billy Liar!

  • Realist

    I hope the IFA and FAI don’t fall out.

    I like the Setanta Cup.

  • Shanks

    ‘As an Irishman living in the North’

    Cromwell

    You may have an Irish passport, but what exactly do you have to do with the ROI?

    Were you born there? Did you ever live there (never mind 2 years)? Do you have a parent or grandparent from there?

    As for your son, if you wish him to play for the ROI, why don’t you do what needs to be done and move there?

    The FIFA rules aren’t unreasonable. They expect you to have some actual connection to the country in question, other than just a passport.

    “Because the whole idea of international football is about players representing their respective countries”

    Exactly. And if you don’t have any actual connection to the country in question, why should FIFA consider it to be ‘your’ country?

  • Shanks

    The first part of the above was directed at Bemused, not Cromwell.

  • Shanks

    good grief

    Can you get over the fact that it isn’t about real world citizenship.

    It’s about FIFA’s rules.

    If you don’t qualify to play for the ROI under FIFA’s rules then your citizenship is irrelevant.

    Why should you get to play for a country that you weren’t born in, haven’t lived in for 2 years, and you don’t have a parent or grandparent from that country?

    FIFA wants you to have some connection to that country, and not just a passport from it.

    For all the fuss about granny rules, the people who qualified under them have more to do with the ROI than you do.

  • Shanks

    “There is no way FIFA can stop Irish born people playing for RoI”

    USA

    What do you mean by Irish born?

    FIFA’s rules mean that ROI born people can play for the ROI.

    Why should someone born in NI get to automatically play for the ROI? That person wasn’t born in the ROI, were they?

    You do know that NI and the ROI are two different jurisdictions don’t you?

    If you are born in NI then your FIFA country is NI. You could play for the ROI if you live in the ROI for 2 years or have a parent or grandparent from the ROI.

    But if all you did was get an Irish passport because you are entitled to one, what real connection do you have to the ROI?

  • Shanks

    ‘My Irish Citizen children would not be eligible to play for Ireland.’

    Briso

    There is no FIFA team called Ireland.

    There is a team called the ROI.

    As for your children, what connection do they have to the ROI? Were they born there? have they lived there? Do they have a parent or grandparent from there?

    Apart from wishing to be part of a united Ireland with the ROI, what connection do you or your children have to the ROI?

    Is it that the ROI gave you all passports?

  • Shanks

    I think it’s funny that all these ‘Irish citizens’ in NI talk about wanting to play for/support ‘their country’, when what they really mean is that they want to play for/support a united Ireland team.

    They are all great anti-partitionists at home, yet claim in droves that the partitionist 26 county entity is ‘their country’ when it comes to football.

    Isn’t the truth that they simply do not want to support or play for the 6 county partitionist entity, and therefore project their affections onto another partitionist entity, pretending that it represents their dream of a united Ireland?

    There is no united Ireland team, so they project the ROI team as representing their dreamed of united country. Even though it is as much a child of partition as NI.

    Sad. There is no team to represent them, so they pretend one that exists is something different from what it really is.

    Rejecting partition by supporting a partitionist entity.

  • Gréagóir O’ Frainclín

    ”Did he take up shinty when an inferior rival gave him a shirt? ”

    That inferior has won a European Cup…..ahem!