Stephen Ward has had a pretty solid week. Having nailed down the left-back spot in the Irish team, and received praise for his improved form, he capped it all off by appearing on this Balls.ie's football show, cleverly titled the Football Show from Balls.ie.
You can listen to the full conversation by subscribing to the show here, or listening to the Soundcloud link below.
Along with chatting about the international set-up, Ward also spoke of life at Burnley under Sean Dyche. Ward revealed that he was close to leaving the club when he failed to break into the first-team, before nailing down a spot last season.
He was full of praise for Dyche:
His record at Burnley speaks for itself. He's done an outstanding job on a very small budget, at a so-called smaller club. He's a very good tactician, he knows exactly what he wants to get out of his players and I think when you watch us play, and when we're at our best, you know that it's a Sean Dyche team from the way we play.
He's got a philosophy, and he sticks to it. We train ridiculously hard, he wants every player to be fit and strong, and be able to get around the pitch, and I feel it's a good balance that we have.
Hopefully this season, I feel we're in a better position to have a crack at staying up in the Premier League.
Ward also talked of how delighted he was to have Jeff Hendrick link up with him at Turf Moor, and offered an interesting insight into the type of questions a manager asks of international teammates in such situations:
The manager asked me a few questions about Jeff. So I knew what was going on, and I was delighted when he did sign with Burnley. He's been a great addition, and you can see straight away his quality. He's a great lad too, I really enjoy his company, and it's nice to have another Irishman alongside me in the dressing room!
It's more questions like: what do you think of him, and does he fancy coming here - because I knew there were a number of clubs interested in him. I think from the summer they knew his quality, and from playing against him in the Championship when he was at Derby. It was more a case of asking me was he leaning towards us, or leaning towards Hull?
Hendrick's desire to join Burnley clearly helping the club to pull the trigger on a record deal.
Ultimately, from an Irish point of view, it's probably better that Hendrick went to Burnley rather than Hull: it leaves David Meyler with an easier job on his hands of staying in the Hull team.
You can listen to the full interview on the podcast.