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13th Nov 2021

FAI confirm they won’t fine young girl who ran on pitch to get Ronaldo’s shirt

Callum Boyle

The FAI released a statement confirming that the 11-year-old won’t be fined

The Football Association of Ireland (FAI) have released a statement confirming that the young girl who ran onto the pitch in Ireland’s game against Portugal will not pay a fine.

As reported by the Irish Mirror, the 11-year-old girl, Addison Whelan, managed to jump over the barriers and run towards Cristiano Ronaldo following Ireland’s 0-0 draw with Portugal at the Aviva Stadium.

Addison was able to avoid the chasing security until the last moment, when she was stopped, but she did manage to grab the attention of the 36-year-old superstar, who gave her his shirt after giving her a hug.

In an interview with Irish radio station RTE Radio One’s Morning Ireland, Addison said that she had been fined €3000 for her actions, but that her dad will be paying it for her.

However, the FAI have stepped in and released a statement confirming that they have chosen to waive the fine and let Addison off the hook.

They said: “The Football Association of Ireland can confirm that young fan Addison Whelan will not face any fine for approaching Cristiano Ronaldo and receiving his shirt at the end of the Republic of Ireland-Portugal FIFA World Cup qualifier on Thursday night.”

The statement then added that whilst Addison won’t face a financial penalty, fans need to remember that running onto the pitch can result in a fine and for fans to be mindful of the rules in future.

It said: “FAI Media & Football Relations Director Cathal Dervan said: ‘We want to reassure Addison that of course she will not face any fine for running onto the pitch and asking for Ronaldo’s jersey’.

“On a serious note we would remind fans at all games that fines are liable to be levied by UEFA in certain instances for entering the field of play, particularly when the game is ongoing and we urge all fans to respect this very sensible rule.”

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