Female Footballers Say 'Our Eyes Have Been Opened' In New Statement

A group representing female footballers who have opened up about alleged unwanted sexual offences from named FAI coaches in the 1990s, have said in a statement that they want their pain "to be the next generation's gain".

This statement which was issued via the Professional Footballers Association of Ireland, follows an investigation was was carried out by the Sunday Investigation and RTÉ Investigates.

The programme 'Girls in Green' was broadcasted on RTÉ One Television last night, and is accessible via the RTÉ Player.

Releasing their statement, the former players have said that they hope that the "systematic and calculated abuse" which they suffered, will never happen again. 

They said: "It is hard to express the feelings that have defined our lives over the last 25 years or so. For this whole time, we buried our emotions and thought we were the only ones". 

"We blamed ourselves and hid our shame from our family and friends. It is only in the last two years that our eyes have been opened...", they added. "Our pain will be the next generation’s gain". 

"Women’s football has emerged from the shadows and we want to see it go from strength to strength. What we experienced should provide lessons for the future and we hope for the FAI, and all other sporting bodies in this country will take the appropriate steps to ensure it never occurs again in this country". 

The former players have also added that the authorities are now dealing with the issue, and have asked for that process and their privacy to be respected.

They also thanked RTÉ Investigates and The Sunday Independent who uncovered this story, and the PFAI for their support. 

More from Dublin News