Trapattoni takes one for team
Soccer:FORGET PORTUGAL and Spain, the repercussions of the Irish financial crisis are now being felt in Italy, with members of the Irish football management team agreeing to take a pay cut of “in excess of 5 per cent” to help their employer in its hour of need.
Giovanni Trapattoni said yesterday he had agreed to take the cut, believed to be in the region of €100,000 per annum, after speaking with FAI general secretary John Delaney in Milan last month.
“We spoke with John maybe two weeks ago,” he said, while attending the official launch of the 2011 Europa League final which is to be played at the Aviva stadium on May 18th. “John spoke with me and said: ‘The FAI has a problem, what do you think about agreeing to reduce your agreement because of this situation?’
“I said that we could discuss this and accept it, also Marco (Tardelli) and the staff. I think this is right.”
When the reduction is applied to the pay of Tardelli and Fausto Rossi as well as Irish members of the coaching and scouting staff like Mick Martin and Don Givens, the saving should amount to something in the region of €160,000. It is estimated a third of that saving would accrue to businessman Denis O’Brien, who currently pays half of the management team’s major salaries.
The FAI has never disclosed Trapattoni’s salary but he is understood to be paid €1.8 million a year under a contract to the end of the European Championship qualifying campaign.
“This isn’t something that was forced by either party,” said Delaney, who confirmed he has also taken a “significant” pay cut.
“It was discussed and it was very simply agreed, I think maybe, in 30 seconds, to be honest with you . . . When someone has a contract they can keep you to it if they want to but he wanted to come here today and show his solidarity with the rest of the staff.”
Delaney said he hoped there would be no further cuts or redundancies required by the association, which is believed to be more than €50 million in debt but, he added, there were no guarantees.
Also speaking at the launch, Minister for Sport Mary Hanafin welcomed Trapattoni’s gesture and suggested that others in sport should consider following suit.“There are people in this country who are earning over half a million – €1.8 million in Giovanni Trapattoni’s case – and there’s absolutely no justification for those high levels at all.”