The FAI was celebrating last night after a stunning 4-2 win over hosts Hungary saw the U17 Boys team advance to the Quarter Finals of the UEFA U17 European Championships. Each of the games in qualifying has been shown on the RTÉ New Channel and that is likely to be the case again on Saturday when they play the winner of Group B, likely to be Spain or Serbia who meet today.

It will also be hailed as a good day off the pitch after the Association hosted members of the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Tourism, Culture, Arts, Sport and Media, led by chair Deputy Niamh Smyth, to FAI Headquarters on the Sport Ireland Campus.

Republic of Ireland Women’s National Team Manager Vera Pauw, FAI president Gerry McAnaney and Chief Executive Officer Jonathan Hill were among the hosts greeted Deputy Smyth, Independent Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick, Sinn Fein deputy Chris Andrews and Fianna Fail Senators Shane Cassells and Malcolm Byrne.

A wide range of topics were discussed over the course of the visit including Facilities and Investment in Irish football, the current Player Pathway consultations with stakeholders across Ireland, Football for Women and Girls, Diversity and Inclusion, Major Event Hosting, Respect for Match Officials and Governance reforms.

“It was a pleasure to welcome Deputy Smyth and her committee members to the FAI today and to outline to them our ongoing and future commitment to the development of Irish football for all our stakeholders, across all levels of our game,” said FAI President Gerry McAnaney.

“We thank Deputy Smyth and her fellow Committee members for their attendance here today and for their contribution to a lively and informative debate on all matters relating to Irish football,” added FAI CEO Jonathan Hill.

“The support of our politicians, across all parties and in both houses of the Oireachtas, is fundamental to the future of our game and we look forward to continuing to work with the Joint Committee and Government on making Irish football better for all.”