Minister for Sport Shane Ross has said it would be "welcome" if Republic of Ireland manager Mick McCarthy took a pay cut given the financial difficulties affecting the FAI.

The Association has current liabilities of €62m and is facing the prospect of examinership or liquidation if it cannot find at least €18m in refinancing.

Speaking to the Irish Times, Ross said that McCarthy's annual salary of €1.2m was an "awful lot of money" but clarified any redcuction would have to be voluntary, saying: "I'm not calling on him to do it or not.

"Anybody who takes a pay cut in support of those who are less well-off than themselves you know, is to be applauded, and I assumed that he would get paid more somewhere else or be in demand somewhere else, and it would be difficult for him to do that."

The 60-year-old former international replaced Martin O'Neill as Ireland manager in November 2018, agreeing a two-year deal that will end with Ireland's participation in Euro 2020.

Under-21 manager Stephen Kenny will then take up the reins for the World Cup 2022 qualifying campaign.

Ireland face a Euro 2020 play-off semi-final against Slovakia on 26 March with a potential final against Northern Ireland or Bosnia five days later.

Separately, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said that while the government will meet with the FAI and UEFA in January to try to work out a plan to avoid the collapse of the Association but that he will not be writing a "blank cheque" to bail out the FAI.

"We're going to try and work out a plan that allows us to protect soccer and protect football in Ireland but in a way that avoids the taxpayer being asked to provide a blank cheque to pay for the mistakes of the past," said the Taoiseach. "That wouldn’t be the right way to go."

"We don't want to be in a situation where we are somehow asking the taxpayer to bail out the FAI and take on their debts and liabilities and maybe their pensions too. We’re not going to do that.