Football

Roy Keane Highlights Three Players In Danger Of Missing Out On Euro 2016 Squad

Roy Keane Highlights Three Players In Danger Of Missing Out On Euro 2016 Squad

When the euphoria dies down we'll take a look at the squad and remember that, in terms of creative options, we're very much near the bottom of the 24 teams who'll take their place in France next season. A lack of Plan B was (one of) our downfalls in 2012 so, ideally, we don't want to be heading to France hoping that it's Jonny Walters or bust. So is there anyone else who could add to the creative options we already have?

Two players in particular have been suggested as bolters who could really impress between now and the time the squad is named. Alan Judge and Harry Arter may not have been in anyone's minds at the start of qualifying but their form for Brentford and Bournemouth respectively have seen them knocking on the door and the friendlies in the build up next summer could see them push for a spot on the plane. And that's not just us saying that.

Speaking to the press at the Irish team hotel on Tuesday, Roy Keane outlined the case for Judge and Arter.

There will be a chance for Judge to get involved, and Arter. These are boys we still haven’t seen enough of. But that is the nature of football. You are always hoping one or two will surprise you and step up to the plate in international football and make a name for themselves.

However, if we're to expect the likes of Judge and Arter (maybe even Eunan O'Kane) to make a push, it's inevitably going to put pressure on some of the players who have dropped down the pecking order over the course of the qualifying campaign.

Squad regulars like Aidan McGeady, Darron Gibson and Alex Pearce are all out of favour with their club teams and Keane has warned them that a lack of games will be looked upon very unfavourably when it comes to picking the final 23 man squad in the summer.

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Obviously narrowing it down to 23 players will be hard but you always say to the players that are not playing – Aiden McGeady, Gibbo, Pearcey– that it is important to go and get games under their belts because it will be very difficult for the manager to go and pick lads who may not have kicked a ball for six months.

Seeing McGeady not even make the squad would have been unthinkable back in Tbilisi when he scored those two goals but his lack of playing time has been such that it has to be a possibility. If he doesn't get a move away from Everton in January, there's certainly going to be a few names ready to stick their hands up and it seems like the Irish management team are more than willing to listen.

See also: 6 Things No One Would Have Predicted At The Start Of Ireland's Euro 2016 Campaign

[Irish Times]

Gary Reilly

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