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Sport Republic of Ireland video 'much ado about nothing' says Niall Quinn

02:05  25 november  2020
02:05  25 november  2020 Source:   belfastlive.co.uk

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Niall Quinn reckons the controversy surrounding a video shown to Republic of Ireland players before their England clash was 'much ado about nothing'.

The former Republic of Ireland star addressed the subject on Virgin Media Sport's Champions League coverage tonight - two days after the FAI closed an investigation into the matter.

Boss Stephen Kenny was backed by senior players and staff after the FAI's former temporary CEO Gary Owens conducted interviews.

The video that sparked the investigation was said to have included references to historical events such as the 1916 Rising.

Asked whether he had any concerns about the incident, ex-striker Quinn replied: "No, absolutely not. To use an old English phrase, it's much ado about nothing.

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"There was an inquiry into it, was there even a need for it? I'm not so certain.

"It seemed to be something that was really promoted in the UK press, pushed by, I suppose, commentators from the political world, that it was the wrong thing to do."

Quinn went on to remind TV viewers that the national anthem - Amhran na bhFiann - contains references to fighting for Ireland.

"Can I just remind people that this is the same sort of setting, that when they go out on to the pitch they sing the Soldier's Song," he added.

"It's about getting your Irishness out there in front of you to be motivated and to play for your country.

"If this video was wrong, it means they can't sing the national anthem from now on, because there's words in that national anthem that say, 'we're soldiers of Ireland...we pledge our soul to Ireland...we'll go against the Saxon foe."

Quinn - who left the role of interim deputy FAI CEO in September - continued: "My feeling now is that Stephen Kenny should ride on that and say, 'right, OK, I'm building a team and I'm bringing motivation into my team, I'm doing it my way, the English press had a go at me but I'm going to do it the way Stephen Kenny does things.

"The day they take our history away from us, and tell us that we can't even stand for our national anthem anymore, because there's reference in there to the past...

"I'm so lucky I played and I was never asked what happened in our dressing room when we played England, because that makes this look very small indeed."

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