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Louise Quinn: 'It's just really disappointing. We are the ones who have to take it'

While the World Cup in France continues to bring women’s football to new heights, in Ireland th...

Louise Quinn: 'It's just reall...

Louise Quinn: 'It's just really disappointing. We are the ones who have to take it'

While the World Cup in France continues to bring women’s football to new heights, in Ireland the sport risks faltering after the departure of Colin Bell just two months before the start of the European Championship qualifiers.

Ireland and Arsenal defender Louise Quinn was on the Saturday Panel this week and explained her reaction to the loss of Bell, who had sought to transform women’s football in Ireland at all levels.  

“It's just really disappointing and again it's at the hands of the players. We are the ones who have to take it. We just want to play. We want the best backing we can get. We want the best manager we can have. Now, it's just all gone,” Quinn told Off The Ball’s Nathan Murphy. 

“We have been building for these Euros and you have to take the disappointment of the World Cup. That was a huge building block for us where we learnt so much about ourselves, about how to play, about winning and losing.

“I feel like this was our time to go and put that [right] in the Euros qualifiers.

Quinn highlighted that while Bell’s transformative nature brought a lot of overhaul to the Irish setup, it was only now heading into the next qualifying campaign that the squad had begun to adapt to his wishes. 

“We had started to get used to it. Our games, they have definitely been closer but we still haven't been getting all the results that we needed. I felt that we were going in a direction. And, it was something that Colin really wanted to change women's football in Ireland. 

“He was that sort of guy who wanted that control and needed that control.”

Bell left to become assistant manager at Huddersfield Town and upon leaving expressed his frustration at the slow pace of development in Irish women’s football and said that the FAI had failed to meet his financial demands.

Moving forward, Quinn highlighted the need for someone who, like Bell, would fully dedicate themselves to growing the game in Ireland.

“I think that somebody needs to take it by the scruff of the neck and do something with it. He seemed to be a relatively willing candidate for it. If it would have been the best thing I don't know but somebody needs to just take it and grow it. It is going to take a lot of time and a lot of effort.”

The loss of Bell feels like an even larger disappointment because of the apparent potential now for women’s football to grow off the back of the success and interest generated during the World Cup.

Quinn said that it seems like in the short-term at least Ireland may fail to capitalise in the immediate aftermath of that success but Quinn emphasised that she would do everything in her power to not let standards in the women’s setup falter. 

“The standard has to stay. The commitment to the women's team cannot drop. We have been through a hardship a few years ago and we can't go back there. 

“I don't want to accept us in any way going backwards. It frustrates me to think that things might take a step backwards but I just can't let that happen.

“Our intention is still to qualify for these Euros.”

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Colin Bell FAI Ireland Womens National Team Louise Quinn Women's World Cup