AFA Ireland president Liam O”Brien says that the European Commission’s appeal against the Irish FA is a “huge step forward” for the game.
O’Brien said that the appeal was an attempt to give a greater voice to the Irish public, with the European Parliament in its first year having already supported it.
Speaking on RTÉ’s Liveline, he said: “There was a huge amount of support for the FA and I think now that it has come to this, I think that the Irish government needs to get out more and give more voice to people, because there’s been a great deal of public pressure.”
I think that this will be a step forward in the fight against racism in football.
“We’ve had the FA’s chief executive in the last year or so come out strongly and say that there is a need for more action, more transparency, more accountability.”
He’s been extremely vocal, very passionate about this issue.
“There is a huge appetite for change, and I know the FA will be hoping that the appeals process can bring more of that change.”
But there are other things we can do to support this.
“The FA has a huge responsibility in relation to the issue of discrimination in the game and in particular on social media, because the FA has the most social media presence in the country.”
If we don’t tackle these issues, if we don.
If we don, then we will be doing our very, very little.
“O’Connor’s comments come after the European Court of Justice ruled that the Football Association’s decision to not renew the Irish contract of its current chief executive did not violate the EU’s rules on freedom of expression.
The court ruled that because of this, the association could not enforce its anti-discrimination policy on social networking sites.
This has led to the FA launching a court challenge against the European commission, arguing that the ban on social networks does not breach Article 8 of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights.
The FA’s legal team argued that this meant that the bans in the new agreement could not be enforced.
However, in the Court of Appeal, the European commissioner said that there was no need to appeal this ruling, as the EU had already decided to uphold the ban.
The ruling has already been appealed to the European Supreme Court, which has yet to rule on the matter.