Matt Doherty not being given a chance to fully shine was one of the curiosities of the recent international break.
The Dubliner, who now has three caps for Ireland, was an unused substitute in the 4-1 Nations League defeat to Wales. For the friendly against Poland, Enda Stevens and Cyrus Christie were preferred in the wing-back roles. Doherty entered the action as a substitute ten minutes after the break.
O'Neill later said that he feels Doherty needs to drive forward more from his wing-back berth. Doherty has been a regular for Wolves in recent seasons in that role. That includes starting all four games since Wolves were promoted back to the Premier League.
"That’s his opinion when he watches me. I wouldn’t say I have the same opinion," told The Guardian.
Doherty was also asked if O'Neill has an issue with him occasionally wearing gloves.
He’s mentioned the gloves. I wear them because it’s cold.
When I first went out he had a joke about the gloves, nothing too serious. I don’t know [if that is an issue]. Ask him.
While he will consider O'Neill's suggestions regarding his game, Doherty wonders if perhaps he just doesn't fit into the Ireland manager's plans.
"I know he’s said he would like me to attack more. Maybe I’ll do that. When I first joined up it was my defending that was the problem. Now it’s my attacking. Maybe my face just doesn’t fit.”
Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile