'It's embarrassing for the FAI' - Eamon Dunphy on Martin O'Neill's contract situation
'Martin O'Neill has agreed a contract extension and will continue as the Republic of Ireland manager for the EURO 2020 campaign!' - A tweet from the FAI's account read on October 5.
On January 12, O'Neill will return to Dublin, having still not signed that contract, after meeting with Stoke City officials this week regarding their vacant manager's position.
O'Neill was in contention for the job but it now looks as if former Watford boss and current Espanyol manager Quique Sanchez Flores will take over at the Britannia.
O'Neill undertook a similar tactic before signing his last contract with the FAI in September 2016, where 15 weeks had elapsed before he actually signed a new deal.
That tweet was posted 14 weeks ago today. As for previous contract, 15 weeks & 3 days passed between FAI announcement (June 7) and confirmation of O'Neill actually signing (Sept 23)
— Mark McCadden (@markmccadden) January 11, 2018
RTE soccer pundit Eamon Dunphy said that the whole situation was 'embarrassing' for the FAI and that he could not imagine the English FA, or any other Association, allowing a situation like that to continue.
"I can't think of any other Association that would allow their manager to stall in this way," Dunphy told News At One on RTÉ Radio 1.
"It's embarrassing for the FAI. It appears that O'Neill, whilst having agreed a contract with the FAI was still open to offers from others. The contract was agreed in principle, but O'Neill delayed.
"He spoke to Stoke with a view to becoming their new manager but they appear now to have a preference for Quique Sánchez Flores.
"I believe the Stoke board were split on who they should appoint - in the end they've gone for Sánchez Flores."
Dunphy also called on the FAI to explain why a new contract had not been signed after the deal was verbally agreed in October.
"The FAI now need to explain why having reached an agreement and made an offer, their manager hasn't accepted the offer and was making himself available to other suitors if you like.
"It's like being engaged - you shouldn't be going out with other people.
"It's embarrassing. You can't imagine the English FA or any other Association allowing a situation like that to continue.
"The fans are in the dark, largely the press are in the dark, and it's disrespectful."