Friday 22 September 2017

'First thing you'd ask yourself is 'why can't that be me?'' - Keane offers Ireland call-up hope to League of Ireland players

Ireland assistant manager Roy Keane in attendance at the SSE Airtricity League Launch 2017 at the Aviva Stadium
Ireland assistant manager Roy Keane in attendance at the SSE Airtricity League Launch 2017 at the Aviva Stadium
Aidan Fitzmaurice

Aidan Fitzmaurice

Roy Keane has told the 2017 crop of League of Ireland players that they can aspire to working their way up the ladder and into the senior international squad.

Martin O'Neill has yet to cap a player from the league but three Dundalk players (Gary Rogers, Andy Boyle and Daryl Horgan) were called into the squad during recent World Cup qualifiers, Horgan an unused sub for the win away to Austria in November.

Horgan and Boyle have of course moved on since then, to Preston, but former LOI player Keane hopes that others can follow that path.

"Your eyes don't lie to you, when you are watching a good player, you are watching a good player no matter what level he is playing at, and we have been impressed with lots of players," Keane said at the launch of the new SSE Aitrticity League season at Lansdowne Road.

"A couple of lads have managed to get involved with the senior squad and we'd like to think that will continue over the next year or two.

"It would be different if we were going to matches and players were not getting a sniff of the senior team. If you are a player playing in the League of Ireland and you see what's happened to the couple of lads who have been involved, the first thing you'd ask yourself is why can't that be me?"

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