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Marc Wilson Sheds New Light On The Euro 2012 Fiasco Which Saw The Late Dropping Of Kevin Foley

Marc Wilson Sheds New Light On The Euro 2012 Fiasco Which Saw The Late Dropping Of Kevin Foley
By Gavin Cooney

As Euro 2016 approaches, we forgive you for wishing to erase from your memory the ghastly visage of Euro 2012, a tournament which necessitated an Irish over-performance to be respectable, and ultimately delivered miserable underachievement. About the only man who seemed to enjoy himself was Giovanni Trapattoni, feted as he was on his return to Italy for a training camp, greeted on the street by multitudes of pilgrims as he returned to his home country as he had spread the good word of the futility of short-passing in little ol' Ireland.

Euro 2012 got off to an extremely bad start when Kevin Foley was dropped from the squad at the last minute, to be replaced by Paul McShane. Foley was the sole player to be cut, and naturally ill-feeling festered to the point that Foley no longer declares for Ireland.  Foley said that he felt "betrayed" by the last-minute change, as Trapattoni decided to bring in another centre-half in Paul McShane, with the manager justifying it by saying that the centre-halves in the squad - Richard Dunne, John O'Shea and Darren O'Dea - all had fitness concerns. The entire episode was a shambles and was ultimately a harbinger for pain at a senior tournament this country had never before experienced.

The episode was brought up once again in today's Sunday Times, as the paper's Paul Rowan spoke to Marc Wilson, who revealed that it was, in fact, he who was first choice to replace Foley, not McShane. Wilson revealed that he rejected the opportunity to link up with the squad as he was already on holidays in Barbados:

It was a strange one. I actually did get called into the squad, late doors for whatever reason.

The team were already at their training camp in Italy. I just said "Listen, I have been off for a few weeks and I don't think it's possible or beneficial to come back in and train and be ready for the Euros. It's not the right decision for me or for the team".

It was just left at that. I hadn't been training, I was just sitting on the beach in Barbados on the beach with my wife.

A very fair response by Wilson. Four years on, he is facing another battle with his fitness to guarantee a place at the Euros.

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[The Sunday Times]

See Also: Watch: Chris O'Dowd Tells A Cracking Yarn About His Time Playing Football Under Kevin McStay

See Also: Cristiano Ronaldo Turned To The Dark Side Because He Doesn't Trust Real Madrid's Doctors

 

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