Monday 29 May 2017

The stat which proves why Liam Brady is right about the 'sad' state of Irish football

Robbie Keane is still Ireland's best finisher despite being 35 years of age
Robbie Keane is still Ireland's best finisher despite being 35 years of age
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Republic of Ireland great Liam Brady believes Ireland stand a chance of making an impact at Euro 2016 but was downbeat about our failure to unearth any players good enough to bring to France over the past year.

Manchester United's Marcus Rashford and Dele Alli of Spurs have emerged from relative obscurity to make Roy Hodgson's England squad while Ireland have been forced to stick with the tried an trusted.

"It's a bit sad that we haven't seen anyone appear in the last year that could push themselves into that squad," Brady told Morning Ireland on RTE Radio One.

"You've seen Marcus Rashford do it for England over the last six months, Dele Alli has started at Spurs this season and nobody knew too much about him and the two boys are going in the England squad to the Euros.

"We don't have that problem and it's a sad indictment of the standard of player that we have at the moment."

A statistic has emerged to completely back up Brady's assertions.

The Republic of Ireland's has the highest average age, 29.8 years. Martin O'Neill has selected 11 players aged 30 or over and only one under the age of 24.

Wales are the seventh youngest group at 27.3 years, while Northern Ireland are further down the scale at 28.5 years.

ENGLAND 25.8 years

GERMANY 25.9

SWITZERLAND 26.1

BELGIUM 26.4

CROATIA 26.7

TURKEY 26.9

WALES 27.3

POLAND 27.5

ALBANIA 27.6

ICELAND 27.6

AUSTRIA 27.7

FRANCE 27.8

SWEDEN 27.8

UKRAINE 27.9

HUNGARY 28.0

SPAIN 28.1

PORTUGAL 28.4

NORTHERN IRELAND 28.5

ROMANIA 28.7

SLOVAKIA 28.9

ITALY 28.9

CZECH REPUBLIC 29.2

RUSSIA 29.3

REPUBLIC OF IRELAND 29.8

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