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Ireland apologise for disrespectful Women's WC qualifying celebrations

October 12, 2022 20:24 IST

Ireland celebrate qualifying for the Womens's WC for the first time.

IMAGE: Ireland manager Vera Pauw celebrates with her Girls in Green after qualifying for a historic FIRST-EVER appearance at the Women's WC. Photograph: FAI Twitter

The Football Association of Ireland (FAI) and national team manager Vera Pauw apologised on Wednesday, for players singing a song referencing the IRA after they beat Scotland 1-0 to qualify for the women's World Cup finals, for the first time.

The video posted on social media after the match on Tuesday, showed the squad singing "Ooh ah, up the 'RA", a song supportive of the paramilitary Irish Republican Army that sought to end British rule in Northern Ireland.


"The first thing in our team is respect for the people around us," Ireland's Dutch manager Pauw told Sky Sports, adding that a shadow had been cast over their qualifying for next year's tournament, in Australia and New Zealand.

"We have done something that hurt people, and it's no excuse that we did not mean to hurt anyone. It's not an excuse that we were celebrating."

Pauw said the players were devastated and the one who posted the video was "crying in her room because she hurt people and she never meant it".

The manager said she was not in the dressing room, and as a foreign coach would not have been aware of what was sung, even if she had been, but took full responsibility regardless.

"It's wrong, we shouldn't have done it and we will never do it again," she said.

Defender Chloe Mustaki said the entire squad felt embarrassed.

"There was quite a lot going on in the changing room in such a major moment with lots of different songs being put on left, right and centre so we're incredibly embarrassed. We didn't mean any hurt on our end, so we do really apologise for that," she said.

The FAI apologised in a statement for any offence caused after the match at Glasgow's Hampden Park stadium.



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