Retired Bill O’Herlihy said he is finding it tough to deal with the reality that his RTE career is over.
The Montrose sports broadcaster had been at the station for 49 years and said a party held in his honour at RTE headquarters until 2am was a “wonderful gesture”.
He said: “Today is the first day that has really dawned on me what I’ve done. I could have stayed on if I had wanted to. I really have come to the end.
“It has dawned to me that 49 years of my life have gone down the tubes and today it has hit me that it is over. It’s gone.
Final day: Bill with his colleagues after final match
“When it comes to September and we are playing in the Europeans, I will get a bit emotional, but I have made the right decision.”
And Bill – who previously admitted he would talk to other stations about other work – told Newstalk he was happy with how he went out.
It came as he looked back on his time leading discussions of games during the 1990 World Cup in Italy.
He said: “Poor old Gerry Ryan asked me after the World Cup if I was sorry I wasn’t in Italy for it, but I wouldn’t have missed Dublin for anything.”