Somewhat lost in the mild furore surrounding his comments about concussion, Roy Keane couldn't resist the temptation of mentioning Everton in his pre-match press conference last week.
The focus of his attention was, inevitably, James McCarthy.
Never looking likely to be involved in Ireland's fixtures against Moldova and Wales, Keane suspected the problems could be rooted back to Merseyside:
James seems to be getting a lot of injuries at Everton, so I don't think we've anything to worry about in terms of how much we push James.
Doubting the effectiveness of Everton's many 'scientists', such comments were always likely to warrant a response from McCarthy's club boss Ronald Koeman.
Already possessing a certain amount of 'previous' with Martin O'Neill, Koeman was intent that his backroom staff were to blame for McCarthy's woes.
Regarding Keane's comments, Koeman sounded like he may have had enough of Keane's interjections:
I don't know what Keane said about the situation. I'm not interested in his comments.
[McCarthy has] had several problems physically and we tried to solve the problem.
With the Irish midfielders best interests in mind, Koeman - slightly tongue in cheek one suspects - credited Ireland for doing 'a good thing not to use the player in the state of fitness' he is in.
Having not yet featured for Everton this season, their initially poor start has left Koeman looking somewhat vulnerable in his position.
Of his 'good boy' McCarthy, Koeman is hopeful that he will have the combative midfielder back 'fit and available for next weekend.'
Assuming that McCarthy will feature in Ireland's play-off push next month, it will be intriguing to see where this war of words goes next.