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Change at top in Fifa was inevitable, says Republic of Ireland boss Martin O'Neill

By Robert Jones

Published 04/06/2015

Republic of Ireland boss Martin O'Neill has admitted that the situation with Fifa had reached a point where things simply had to change.

Asked for his reaction to Blattter's impending departure, he said: "I would say essentially the same as most other people. There's been a lot of pressure in the last couple of days heaped on him, and he has made that decision.

"I wouldn't know the ins and outs of what's happening - I'm just a general reader like everyone else is - but there was a lot of pressure on him and he has made that decision, so there will be a change at the top of Fifa.

"Again, I probably don't really know enough, there's no point in me just following the sheep and going along with it.

"But there is a change here and it looks from a distance as if things had to change at some stage."

However, amid speculation over the future of the 2018 World Cup finals, which are scheduled to take place in Russia, he added: "From a Russian viewpoint, if you have put things in place when Fifa, regardless of who was in charge, have made that decision and obviously taken a lot of time to get preparations in place, I think Russia would be particularly disappointed if the tournament was taken away if that was the case.

"But in saying that, there obviously might be a lot of legal implications as well as everything else.

"But usually you get some time to prepare for these things and Russia have known about this for a little while now, so they would be particularly disappointed if that happened."

Belfast Telegraph

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