While Cyrus Christie was often criticised by some supporters, the Fulham man has been an excellent servant to his country. He was a more than able deputy during Seamus Coleman's long injury layoff, while also being parachuted into the unfamiliar position in central midfield at times under Martin O'Neill.
He carried out both duties to the best of his abilities, putting in some excellent performances at right back. His 23 caps for Ireland have all been earned.
Having had an opportunity with Fulham in the Premier League last season, he didn't capitalise on it in the way he would have hoped. Much of that was to do with the circumstances the club found themselves in, with Fulham all but resigned to relegation for the second half of the campaign.
Now back in the Championship, he is performing well once again. Christie has made 18 appearances as Fulham push for an immediate return to the Premier League. The Ireland international has been especially impressive over the last month or so, and it appears to have attracted the attentions of an unlikely suitor.
Italian journalist Gianluca Di Marzio is reporting that Serie A giants Roma are interested in signing Cyrus Christie this month.
They see Christie as an ideal backup to first choice right back Alessandro Florenzi, the 35-cap Italian international. Di Marzio mentions the Irishman's physical attributes as the key reason behind the interest, with his running ability and 188cm frame a major bonus.
— Gianluca Di Marzio (@DiMarzio) January 23, 2020
Roma are hoping to bring in a couple of players before the end of the window, meaning their interest in Christie looks serious. It is unclear what type of fee Fulham would seek for the defender, or if they would even be willing to let him leave at this late stage of the window.
For the player himself, the move would surely hold plenty of appeal. At 27-years old, a move such as this may not come around again. Roma are one of the most well-known names in European football and have been in the Champions League semi-finals as recently as the 17/18 season.
Having finished sixth last season, they currently sit in fourth place in Serie A and look on course for a return to Europe's premier club competition. They are also through to the last 32 of the Europa League where they will face Belgian side Gent.
Roma are not shy of shopping in English football, having signed the likes of Chris Smalling, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, and Aleksnader Kolarov in recent times.
If Christie does make the move, it would certainly do no harm to his international prospects.