Republic of Ireland boss Stephen Kenny ‘fighting for job’ as investigation is launched into ‘political’ video shown to players before England game
Republic of Ireland boss Stephen Kenny is reportedly ‘fighting for his job’ amid alleged claims he showed an ‘anti-English’ video to his players prior to last week’s friendly against England at Wembley.
According to the Daily Mail, the Football Association of Ireland is investigating the contents of a video shown as a motivational tool prior to the match, which England won 3-0.
In a statement the FAI said: “The Football Association of Ireland is aware of issues surrounding content shared with our Republic of Ireland senior men’s team ahead of the recent international friendly against England at Wembley Stadium.
“The FAI is already looking into this internally as a matter of urgency, in order to establish the facts. The FAI has no further comment to make at this time.”
Kenny is still searching for his first win after eight games in charge as Ireland boss, including a penalty shoot-out defeat to Slovakia which ended hopes of qualifying for the Euro 2020 finals.
It is understood Irish players were ‘shocked’ by the content of the video, while other sources said the video was simply ‘pro-Irish’.
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The report adds that Kenny could now be ‘fighting for his job’, though information will become clearer after the results of the investigation are found.
For the time since 1971, Ireland have gone an entire calendar year without winning a single match.
And after their 0-0 stalemate with Bulgaria on Wednesday, Kenny lamented his side’s absentees as their wretched Nations League campaign came to an end.
“It’s been very difficult, but you just have to manage it”, he said. “The team that wasn’t available tonight would be stronger than the team that was, and that’s not being disparaging. We’d just so many frontline players not available tonight.
“But having said that, now some players have really put themselves in contention to challenge for places and that’s what we needed – and we will need that because we could have injuries in March as well. You don’t know how things will go.
“We need a greater pool to pick from and we’re developing that now, and that’s important.
“We’re disappointed that we didn’t win the game overall. We know we didn’t play well in the first half but we played really well in the second half for periods.”