Fine Gael MEP Mairead McGuinness has lost out in her bid to secure the European People's Party nomination for the race to become the next president of the European Parliament.

The Midlands North West MEP received 57 votes in the first round of the EPP runoff, well behind frontrunner Antonio Tajani, who was on 94 votes.

Given that Mr Tajani's total was almost equal to that of Ms McGuinness and the two other candidates - Alain Lamassaoure (38) and Alojz Peterle (18) - all three candidates conceded defeat to the Italian.

Like Ms McGuinness, Mr Tajani is also a vice president of the parliament. He served as EU industry and entrepreneurship commissioner from 2010 to 2014.

With 217 out of 751 MEPs, the EPP is the largest political grouping in the European Parliament.

The result means that Pat Cox, who held the position from 2002 to 2004, remains the only Irish president of the parliament.