Legendary Irish pundit Eamon Dunphy leaves RTÉ after 40 years

Legendary Irish pundit Eamon Dunphy leaves RTÉ after 40 years

EAMON DUNPHY has left RTÉ with immediate effect after four decades of broadcasting.

The iconic pundit has appeared regularly on RTÉ Sport's soccer coverage since the 1980s and has become one of the most recognisable figures in Irish sports coverage.

In a statement, the 72-year-old explained he decided not to renew his contract with RTÉ Sport two years ago but stayed on at that time.

The journalist and former Republic of Ireland international footballer said he informed RTÉ of his decision before the World Cup in Russia this summer.

Upon his departure, Dunphy paid tribute to the friends he made during his time with broadcaster and said revealed his plans for the future.

"Two years ago, I decided not to renew my contract with RTÉ Sport. At the time, they prevailed upon me to stay and, in fact, offered me a rise, a small one, to do so," he said.

"However, before the World Cup I told them this time, I would be leaving.

"I intend to focus on my podcast The Stand which is flourishing and has had over 2.3 million listens since we started. That’s where my energy will now be devoted.

"In my 40 years with RTÉ, I made many good friends and I wish them the very best for the future."

Head of Sport at RTÉ, Declan McBennett, thanked Eamon for the "immense contribution he has made to our sporting coverage across four decades", adding: "his analysis informed, enthralled and entertained a nation."