McCarthy committed to Ireland despite Martinez's comments
JAMES McCARTHY insists that there's no question of his commitment to Ireland for next week's Euro 2012 qualfier against Macedonia, despite what his club manager thinks, writes AIDAN FITZMAURICE.
And a club-v-country row is already brewing as Wigan boss Roberto Martinez has made it very clear that he does not want midfielder McCarthy - a key figure in Wigan's battle against relegation - to hook up with the Irish squad in Dublin on Monday.
Martinez was stirring up tensions again yesterday when he said that McCarthy has still not made his "choice" between Ireland and Scotland, with McCarthy, the FAI and Trapattoni all insisting that there was no issue whatsoever with McCarthy's allegiance. "He (McCarthy) needs to have time and space to make the right decision as he wants to play at international level," said Martinez.
"It's unfair to try to put him under this massive pressure. I don't expect a final decision unless James is ready for it."
But McCarthy is said to be bemused by Martinez's comments and plans to hook up with the squad in Dublin next week. "James contacted us today and he is 100 percent committed to playing for Ireland," said an FAI spokesman.
Scotland boss Craig Levein also caused a stir when he suggested that he hadn't given up on the idea of Glaswegian McCarthy playing for the Scots. "James isn't in this squad. At this minute he hasn't played a competitive match for Ireland," Levein said.