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Martin O'Neill Really Doesn't Think Much Of Stephen Ireland's Career Choices

Martin O'Neill Really Doesn't Think Much Of Stephen Ireland's Career Choices
By Gary Reilly

When Stephen Ireland played a staring role in Stoke's 2-2 draw with Spurs at the weekend, Martin O'Neill knew what was coming. There he was thinking everyone had forgot about the Cobh man moved on to some young chap called Grealish but no, it seems that's not entirely the case.

All it takes is one good game and Ireland once again puts his head back above the international parapet, whether he wants it there or not. It was only a matter of time that the former Man City man was mentioned during yesterday's squad announcement and so it proved.

It came as no surprise that Ireland's name was mentioned in conjunction with Grealish, whose situation O'Neill suggested was very different to that of the Stoke man. To demonstrate why that was the case, O'Neill certainly didn't hold back.

He's not somebody whose career, let's be fair, both at club and international level, has been fitful.

And the brutal truth is that Stephen Ireland is not the Stephen Ireland that played brilliantly for Manchester City quite some years ago.

That may well have been the end of it but O'Neill himself seemed keen to get another dig in at the Stoke man. When discussing the predicament Aiden McGeady finds himself in at Everton at the moment, O'Neill offered up Ireland as warning for McGeady.

You don't want to get to the end of your career and find that you had an incredible amount of talent, more talent than most people would have died for, and you haven't utilised it properly.

It's safe to say we won't be seeing Stephen Ireland back in an Ireland jersey as long as O'Neill is in charge anyway.

[Independent]

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