Richie Towell believes he's good enough to break into the Euro 2016 squad and he left Dundalk for Brighton to further that ambition.
However, Towell has not played a single minute of League football since joining the club. Worse still, Brighton's already crowded midfield department has become more cluttered since the turn of the year, with the arrival of Steve Sidwell and Anthony Knockaert in January. Towell has to clamber past some big names to get a sniff.
As reported by Paul Lennon in the Star today, Martin O'Neill was asked about the prospects of the LOI's recent high-profile exports, Towell and Chris Forrester.
The answer did not sound too promising.
Martin O'Neill made it exquisitely clear he will watch a lot of football matches over the next few months but he will not be watching a Brighton reserves game.
The answer is 'it's never too late'. Although I did say it to young Towell a few months ago, when he was making the move over, if he thinks I am going to travel on down to Brighton to watch him play in the reserves, he's another thing coming!
Let him break into the team, let him get there and be part of it. It's been tough so far but he can definitely push on.
The picture for Chris Forrester at Peterborough United - admittedly a lower division - is considerably happier. Here was the verdict of the Peterborough Telegraph's Alan Swann after Peterborough's FA Cup tie against West Brom.
Chris Forrester: Crikey, what a talent Posh have unearthed. Even the man from the Times was singing the young Irish midfielder’s praises. Covered a huge amount of ground, refused to yield to obvious tiredness and kept driving his team forward with his accurate passing. Tremendous effort. 9
O'Neill wasn't drawn on Forrester's chances and said that there are 'a number of players who have been part of proceedings who will definitely be on the team sheet, there's no question about that.'
'But there are places up for grabs and it's never too late'.