Belfast Telegraph

Republic wary of Euro 2012 draw

By DSaniel McDonnell

FAI CEO John Delaney wants to avoid England for financial reasons and the Ukraine for logistical reasons ahead of this evening’s Euro 2012 draw in Kiev.

The FAI are keen to play a long awaited money spinning friendly with England in Dublin either in February or May, but that will be off the agenda if the two nations are paired together.

“If we draw them, that's out,” said Delaney, “I'd like to have the friendly in Dublin sooner rather than later, but if we get them, we get them.”

Meanwhile, although the FAI are determined to make Poland their base camp for the duration of the finals, they have a better chance of securing a preferred training centre if they are drawn to play their games in the country and other nations — including Spain — are designated to the Ukraine.

The Republic have inspected bases in northern Poland, but Spain have a first preference on a venue the FAI would like. The defending champions may move elsewhere if they end up in one of the two Ukraine groups.

“The manager is certainly very strong that he wants to stay in Poland,” said Delaney.

Delaney expects clarity later today, and wants all the arrangements hammered down before Christmas.

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