John Delaney looks to clarify legal warnings

‘While I was travelling and uncontactable there was some confusion through a third party’

 FAI chief executive John Delaney  . Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

FAI chief executive John Delaney . Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

 

John Delaney has sought to clarify the legal threats issued on his behalf to warn publications off identifying him singing in a video filmed in a Dublin pub.

The FAI chief executive was filmed singing the Republican ballad song ‘Joe McDonnell’ in The Bath pub around the corner from the Aviva stadium after Ireland’s 4-1 win over the USA last week. After it was reported in The Irish Times this morning, he apologised for any offence caused.

However, it emerged this morning that The Guardian and The Telegraph were warned by London law firm Debello Law that their “client’s position is simply that it is not him singing in the video” and “if you take the decision to publish, legal proceedings will follow as it will undoubtedly cause various issues for my client.”

In an effort to clarify the matter this evening, Delaney released a statement on the association’s website in which he said: “Yesterday, during the day, I was travelling back with my partner from abroad and trying to deal primarily with the serious cyber bullying issues facing her.

“I now understand that while I was travelling and uncontactable there was some confusion through a third party around the background of a video which appeared and where it happened which led to misunderstanding.

“As anyone who knows me will attest, I abhor violence and have worked tirelessly through my role at the Football Association of Ireland to strengthen links between communities on this island, north and south.”

In the statement, Delaney added: “Following on from some comments, I was an Irish man, singing an Irish song in private company, although as stated in earlier interviews today, if the song has caused any offence of course I’m sorry.”

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