Packie Bonner to contest Donegal SW by-election for Fianna Fail?

There is speculation today that Fianna Fail will call on soccer legend Packie Bonner to contest the Donegal Southwest bye-election which is expected to be held early next year.

Mr Bonner is on the recored stating that Fianna Fail last year asked him to contest the European elections on their behalf and in a soon to be published book, leaves the door open for a run in politics.

According to the Irish Independent Fianna Fail sources believe Packie Bonner, as a candidate for Donegal South-West, would "romp home".

Although Bonner has so far declined to comment on the speculation, a spokesperson for the FAI -- where he is technical director -- maintained he had not been approached and would not be running.

In a book to be published next week, Bonner talks of being asked by the party to run in the European elections last year -- and leaves the door open to stepping onto the political field.

It is speculated that FIanna Fail has all but given up any hope of winning the by-elections in Waterford and Dublin South and believe that securing a high profile candidate in Donegal South West could see them edge it.

The Donegal South-West by-election is expected to held in the first quarter of next year, that fact forms part of the Government's defence of a Sinn Fein legal challenge against the failure to hold the vote.