John Delaney FIFA bet

How John Delaney & The FAI Could Have Spent €5 Million

The FAI became embroiled in the FIFA scandal yesterday when chief executive, John Delaney, divulged they received €5 million from Sepp Blatter to forget about Thierry Henry’s infamous handball.

The wad was supposedly written off as a loan for stadium building but it is still not wholly apparent from the FAI’s accounts for the year in question as to where exactly the money was allocated.

So, I’ve a few suggestions on what it could have been blown on:

25,000 Pairs Of Shoes For John Delaney

Delaney famously did a Cinderella at the European Championships in 2012, losing his shoes on a raucous night out. However, like Cinderella, it was the Irish team who ran away from the ball – losing all three group matches.


Surely a man on €360,000 a year wasn’t sporting Dunnes Stores’ finest so one would think the €5 million wad should cover 25,000 pairs of Brown Thomas’ brogues for the FAI chief executive.

A Round Of Drinks For 1 Million Irish Fans

Delaney also stuck two grand behind the bar for celebrating fans in Talinn in 2011.


Using a conservative estimate of a fiver a pint, the FAI honcho could almost stretch to buying a drink for everyone in Dublin to celebrate the association’s handout from FIFA.

John Delaney’s Salary For 11 Years

It’s believed the head of the FAI earns more than the head of the FBI, who are currently investigating the FIFA scandal.

However, the €5 million windfall would keep Delaney in the lifestyle he has become accustomed to for a whopping 11 years – just under the length of time he has already served at the helm.

John Delaney Feature Film

Despite having a documentary – ‘John The Baptist’ – made about him recently, one would imagine the next step in the FAI CEO’s story is having a feature length film made about him and his rise to power.

Gérard Depardieu, Sepp Blatter

Despite sneering Sepp Blatter and FIFA’s own movie about themselves as “incredible ego”, it wouldn’t be out of the realms of reality to believe Delaney would love his own picture – maybe even have Tim Robbins play the Waterford native in a Shawshawk Redemption-like fable.

Prize Money For The Next 50 League Of Ireland Champions

While Delaney pockets more than the likes of Barack Obama, current League of Ireland champions Dundalk netted James Milner’s wages for under five days – €100,000 – for romping home to the league title in March.

Meanwhile, First Division champions Longford Town earned €25,000 for their triumph, meaning the 5 million could sustain the First Division until the year 2215.

Pay League Of Ireland Entry Fees For All Clubs For 16 Years

While the prize money on offer in the League of Ireland is relatively paltry, clubs still have to pay a reported €19,000 to enter the league.

The €5 million renumeration could have paid for domestic club’s entry into the League of Ireland for 16 years – SIXTEEN!

Saved Monaghan United 833 Times Over

While Delaney was losing his shoes in Poland in 2012, Monaghan United were losing their League of Ireland existence.

The club were forced to withdraw from the league, mainly for financial reasons, with then boss Roddy Collins claiming as little as €6,000 could have saved the club from their fate.

Private Investigators

In the now-infamous radio interview with Ray D’arcy, Delaney regaled a story about how, when introducing his girlfiend Emma to Sepp Blatter, the FIFA president leered at her for a number of seconds and then turned to him, smiled and said: “I approve”.


You got the sense that the FAI head honcho was more upset old Sepp was perving on his Mrs rather than any corruption that may have taken place.

Maybe he was so upset, he hired private investigators with the €5 million to help dig up some dirt on Blatter for having the utter cheek to ogle his partner right in front of him – which is fair enough, really.

632,000 Books About The Henry Incident

No books have been written, as yet, about the Henry handball but children’s book “Horrid Henry & The Football Fiend” was quite prescient in predicting the scandal.


Some of Horrid Henry’s tips for winning at football include “whenever the referee isn’t looking, use your hands to control the ball” and “things like handball are only illegal if the ref sees”. The book currently retails in Eason’s for €7.90 for those seeking a definitive account of the incident.