Club president Chris
Hughton was among the large turn-out at last Friday's AGM of the London
RISSC branch, which was held at the Ebury Arms in south-west London's
Pimlico. MALCOLM McNALLY pictured Chris with members
of the committee, above.
Not for the first time the hardworking and well-respected officers
(that's what it says here) were returned unopposed, while Sean
O'Flaherty (vice-chairman), John Hyland
(membership secretary) and Pat Meade (football team
manager) stood down. Some of the members were co-opted onto the committee
- Declan Halissey, Paul McDowell,
and Aidan Slogan.
Chairman Tony Booth - spoke of what had been a successful
year for the club, with trips having been organized to games in the
USA, Poland, Turkey and darkest Manchester. The club had maintained
a good relationship with the FAI in terms of ticket supply and, although
membership had dropped from 686 to 512 inside 18 months, that all-time
high figure had been the result of people joining up just to be sure
of a ticket for the Republic's European championship qualifier at
Wembley in March of last year.
Treasurer Gerry O'Connell reported a deficit of £ 1,135 over
the year, which was the result of offsetting the cost of trips and
making donations to a number of charities, while the overall club
reserves stand at a healthy £7,589. The club was able to keep
the cost of annual membership at £7.50 for a third successive
After the aforementioned AGM Chris Hughton gave a
very gracious (and funny) speech in which he thanked the club and
its members for organizing and supporting his testimonial dinner earlier
in the year. Chris went on to speak about the Republic scene in general,
commenting on how different things are these days.
"When I first started playing for the Republic, I'd come back
to Spurs after a game and all my English and Scottish clubmates would
be calling the Irish players 'Mickey Mouse"', he recalled. "It
would be interesting to compare the value of the English and Irish
teams these days, when you see the likes of Terry Phelan going for
"Does that mean they're selling full backs by the inch?"
enquired one Wicklow wag, to much amusement.
"Does that mean you've seen me in the shower?" was the Brentford
man's quick response, before a third voice at the back of the room
cut through the laughter to ask: "Wasn't it a free transfer West
Ham gave you, Chris'?"
He didn't exactly go red, but it was mighty close.
© The Irish Post 1992