Joe Brolly says 'working class' status reason for Irish women's IRA song backlash 1 month ago

Joe Brolly says 'working class' status reason for Irish women's IRA song backlash

"It was a deliberate, sustained attack by the establishment."

Joe Brolly says that the backlash threw at the Irish woman's football team following the 'IRA song' controversy was down to being working class.


The Derry native explains how the wave of criticism that came towards the team for singing 'Up the RA' in the dressing rooms was completely undeserved.

Ireland had just qualified for the World Cup and during their celebrations while singing a collection of songs, including Taylor Swift, Celtic Symphony by the Wolf Tonnes was played.

Joe brolly

For a few seconds the team sang the line that caused so much controversy in the press.


Speaking on his Free State podcast, former RTE Sport analyst Brolly decried the role the establishment had played in "slaughtering" the squad over the incident.

"It was a deliberate, sustained attack by the establishment - Fine Gael, Fianna Fáil, the media. It was on the front pages here... slaughtering the girls.

"The girls were subjected to a really outrageous, widespread bullying. Vera Pauw - she was bemused, she's from Holland - she was walked out to make an apology.

Joe Brolly

"It was more than that [ruining the celebration], it was humiliating. Vera Pauw was asked about the girls and she said the girl who posted that was in her room, weeping. She was in her room fucking weeping because of this."

Brolly goes on to compare the incident with the Leinster Rugby team who were involved in a similar controversy.


"At the end of a game one of the tunes is Celtic Symphony. The journalists realised that it was being played and said, "oh, this is being played."

Joe Brolly

"And Leinster said, 'oh, we're terribly sorry about that', and it was described as a gaffe. And that was the end of it. Where's the humiliation? Where's the people being wheeled out and asked to apologise?'

"It's reported as hijinks - as it was - and "nothing to see here."

"Then the Irish soccer team, widely seen as working class, in their moment of great triumph do exactly the same thing. And there is a vicious and sustained humiliation of them.


"It destroys celebrations that are once in a lifetime. That fortnight can never be returned to them - it's a stain on this."

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