The Minister for Transport and Sport has said the FAI needs "a total clean out" and to show clear signs of reform before the Government will engage in a meaningful way with it.

Shane Ross said the Government would not "give a blank cheque" to the organisation but wants to support the grassroots across the country.

Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, the minister said the Government "can't understand why [the FAI] is so reluctant to appoint independent directors, a new chairman and an independent CEO". 

He said the Government wants to look after the €2.9m in funding it provides to the FAI and to ensure it gets to small clubs, the players, and the grassroots.

He said the FAI is a "basket case" and with no idea of how deep the "black hole" in its finances goes, the Government does not want to go near it.

The minister said the Government is interested in the grassroots and in protecting the future of football and is open to any constructive suggestions for how to manage the support going forward.

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