Appearing on the TV3 panel for tonight's Barcelona-Arsenal game, Martin O'Neill left the door barely ajar for Damien Delaney's return to the Ireland squad for Euro 2016.
Over the past two years, his club form has been far more stellar than any of the other contenders for the centre back slot.
However, he has been out of the loop at international level for all that time. He retired from international football via instagram last August, citing his age and his belief that Ireland needed to look towards the future.
According to his club manager Alan Pardew and teammate Scott Dann, Delaney is ready to rescind his retirement and make himself available for Euro 2016.
Tommy Martin brought the matter up with Martin O'Neill tonight. As reflected by both his comments and his body language, O'Neill didn't appear enthused by the prospect of inviting Delaney back into the fold. He alluded to Delaney's refusal to travel to the US for the 2014 summer tour.
However, he said wouldn't rule anything out. But one wouldn't be too optimistic that Delaney will be boarding the plane based on his comments.
It's an interesting one with Damien. The summer before last, we had a collection of players. He played with us in Turkey and then we had a tour of America.
I think he felt he was never going to be a first choice and he declined to go to America and that didn't augur too well. I couldn't guarantee it. We went our separate ways. He is on the wrong side of 30. He hasn't played that many competitive games for Ireland. The way we are with centre-halves, I couldn't rule anyone it.
I wasn't in a position to offer first team football. I couldn't guarantee it. We went our separate ways.
He is on the wrong side of 30. He hasn't played that many competitive games for Ireland... But the way we are with centre-halves, I couldn't rule anyone it.
To quote the great Lloyd Christmas, 'so you're telling me there's a chance!!'