FAI: Crisis-hit association appoints former Republic striker Niall Quinn as interim deputy CEO

Niall Quinn
Niall Quinn was Sunderland's chief executive between 2006 and 2011

Former Republic of Ireland striker Niall Quinn has been appointed as the Football Association of Ireland's interim deputy chief executive.

Quinn, who won 91 caps for the Republic before retiring in 2002, was Sunderland chairman between 2006 and 2011.

The FAI has been in crisis since details of a "bridging loan" given to the association by former CEO John Delaney were made public last March.

Last month it was revealed that the FAI has liabilities of 62m euros.

Since returning to the Republic of Ireland in 2012, Quinn has chaired a 'Football in Ireland Visionary Group' which has outlined a new direction for the game in the country, including a revamped League of Ireland.

It has been widely reported that the former Arsenal, Manchester City and Sunderland forward has no interest in becoming FAI chief executive.

Earlier this month, the association's executive lead Paul Cooke warned that the FAI could go into liquidation as it seeks a potential bailout.

"In addressing the current challenges facing the FAI, the executive team want to ensure that the organisation's core objective of the promotion and development of the game of football in Ireland is prioritised," said an FAI statement announcing Quinn's temporary appointment.

"Niall's role with the team will focus on leading a future League of Ireland strategy, the overall development of the game in Ireland, including supporting grassroots and community initiatives together with our player pathway programmes.

"Niall will also focus on helping restoring and building key relationships and trust with key peer groups and the media."