The solution to Irish football’s decline is not to fire Stephen Kenny – it is to keep him, and fire everyone else at the FAI.
The biggest-selling Irish-published book in 2020 was “Champagne Football”, which told in great detail the story of the destruction of Irish football thanks, in no small part, to the utter incompetence and hubris of a man now known in football circles as John “Fucking” Delaney.
Anyone who read that book cannot have been surprised by the 1-0 loss against Luxembourg; the only surprise is that it wasn’t by more.
Yet the millions watching at home were seemingly operating under the delusion that Ireland should, for some reason, be thumping the likes of Luxembourg by two or three goals.
The question to ask all these people is – why?
Ireland has, at the moment, not one single player coveted by any decent club in Europe. And after a decade and a half of stinking up the international game with putrid anti-football, we should be grateful that we’re allowed to play with the rest at all.
We are reaping what we sowed in the usual cesspit of corruption and incompetence that is Irish public life, and we should get used to the idea that things are going to get worse before they get better.
Yet still the fans gather and sing “The Fields Of Athenry”, that anthem of the gaslit that for generations has been our only achievement of note at the finals of a major tournament while the others got on with the task of actually playing the game.
Changing the manager after the Luxembourg result would not make one iota of difference, as results are now irrelevant, and they have been for quite some time.
To mangle a quote by Bill Shankley, winning is no longer a matter of life or death – it is much less important than that.
A cancer of incompetence is feeding on the cadaver of Irish football, metastasized by the whispering traitors who would sell their own mothers for a selfie with a well-known player and a grubby bit of power.
As such, the game can no longer be judged by what happens on the pitch, at any level.
It is, in every way, not fit for purpose.
24 hours after Ireland, with its population of five million, were beaten by Luxembourg, Denmark (population 5.8 million) were beating Moldova 8-0.
The Danes have a league with a hugely lucrative TV deal and teams that regularly qualify for the group stages of major European competitions.
The League Of Ireland has a one-camera set-up for most matches on a dodgy streaming platform – and in at least one ground, that camera is placed in an area no fans are allowed, so decrepit is the stadium in question.
There is never any guarantee that the teams that start the league campaign will actually get to finish it. The paucity of resources available to it are a stain on what was once a proud football nation whose domestic league produced players that went on to play for Liverpool and Manchester United.
On the coaching side, we continue to suffer from Dutch “erm” disease, where anyone with a Netherlands passport is considered a soccer savant, regardless of the evidence of our own eyes and ears.
We persist in talking of six-year-olds as elite prospects, despite all the evidence that such thinking is a mountain of sparkly unicorn shite dreamed up by weak-minded idiots who know nothing about either children or football.
The Football Association of Ireland has long been a triumphant failure of style over substance, despite having none of the former.
It’s a sporting Ponzi scheme that has ripped the dreams from the bosom of loyal fans while pissing on players and telling them it’s raining, all led by a golden shower of shysters who, staggeringly, are still free men despite an incompetence bordering on the criminal
The Irish men’s soccer team does not need a new manager – the current one is about the only one who has talked any sense at all in the organisation in the last ten years.
Instead it needs the corporate version of an oncologist to weed out and destroy the cancer of vested interests and the assorted sleeveens that have been allowed to usurp the game that used to be ours.
Irish football as we knew it is dead, and what has replaced it is no longer worth having.