Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 20 September 2014

Call the football team 'Ireland'

Isn't it about time to change the name of Ireland's soccer team?

It's way past time to drop the 'Republic of' prefix to the team name and announce to the world - especially Sepp Blatter and Fifa - that, commencing with the World Cup qualifiers in the autumn, the Republic of Ireland will be officially known as Ireland.

We have players in the squad from throughout Ireland now and, no doubt, more will join in the not-too-distant future.

Take a lead from rugby and make this name change now. At the least, take a survey and test the public mood on the matter.

Remember the worldwide implications that resulted from President Nixon's decision to use a ping-pong game to open wide the door to China (having spent his entire career up to that point vilifying 'Red China').

Come on, FAI. Make the decision about the team's name.

JOHN CONDON

San Francisco, USA

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