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Survey Reveals Fans’ Thoughts on the State of Irish Football

A major survey on the views of Irish football fans was published today (Saturday, November 10th) during a conference entitled, ‘The Heart of the Game – Why Supporters are vital to Football’.

Over 1,500 Irish fans took the survey as part of the ‘Improving Football Governance through Supporter Involvement and Community Ownership’ initiative, funded by the European Commission. Some of the key findings were:

– 89% of fans are unsatisfied with how football is run in Ireland.

– 82% of fans feel their views are completely ignored at a national level.

– 64% of fans feel they have little or no involvement in decision making at their club.

– 97% of fans would like to have meaningful input into issues affecting the Airtricity League.

Spokeswoman and Project Manager Niamh O’Mahony said that whilst fans are feeling pessimistic, they are clear on what would help improve matters.

“Over 50% of fans feel greater supporter involvement would improve the running of football generally in Ireland, with a similar number feeling it would do the same at their club.  Combined with the finding that 70% of fans are willing to take a stake in their club, it is clear that provision for supporter involvement will be a crucial part of the future of Irish football.

“The response to the survey is very, very promising. It has put paid to any idea that supporters aren’t motivated enough, and its results have provided us with real opinions, practical ideas about what is wrong and where the solutions might lie.

“The survey also raises some of the serious issues to be addressed in the league, as the people who know it best, the supporters, have made their views very clear. The project is now compiling a handbook on the best practices for supporters involvement in their clubs and we hope it will provide a way forward for clubs, fans and the FAI to address these issues urgently.”

Download the full report: SDE Ireland Survey Report.

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