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Gibson: 'We can shock Germans'

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Republic of Ireland's Darron Gibson. Picture credit: David Maher / SPORTSFILE

Republic of Ireland's Darron Gibson. Picture credit: David Maher / SPORTSFILE

Republic of Ireland's Darron Gibson. Picture credit: David Maher / SPORTSFILE

THE word was that Darron Gibson wouldn't be a bit happy if anyone dared ask a question about Giovanni Trapattoni and would walk off. Fair enough. The Italian is gone and we move on.

But you have to wonder whether Gibson ever listens to advice about how he presents himself to the world. He has a lot to prove to Ireland fans and he shouldn't think for a second that they have forgotten his refusal to play for his country.

Some would argue that Gibson made a principled stand; that he was unjustly treated by Trapattoni and that a player should have the right to voice an objection if he feels the need.

But that's not the way football works. Many, many players have been on the wrong end of bad decisions and kept their counsel.

Indeed, it was odd to watch Andy Reid give his thoughts to the media in Portmarnock yesterday five metres away from Gibson – two of the forgiven with differing approaches to reconciliation.

Reid has more reason than any to have a right go at Trapattoni but he chose not to. Gibson gave it both barrels and clearly wants to put it behind him now.

Such is the healing power of football that a player who wouldn't cross the road to play for one manager is more than happy to come back once he's out of the way and if Gibson does his stuff in the coming week, months and years, his brief hiatus will be forgotten.

But you sense that Gibson's international career will involve a rocky road. He is opinionated and an independent thinker who has great self-belief in his own ability, even if the rest of us are still waiting to see the 'brilliance' mentioned by Seamus Coleman yesterday sustained over a long period of time.

Add to that the fact that he must now wade through Gareth Barry and international colleague James McCarthy just to get into the Everton team and we all know that Roberto Martinez has a particular fondness for a talented young Glaswegian.

Competition

Gibson agrees that a concentration of Ireland's best young players at one club should have collateral benefits for the senior international team, despite the fact that he will be in serious competition with McCarthy at Goodison.

"I think it will. Obviously if you're playing together every week, you know each other's game inside out and it's going to help coming away here having three players that know each other so well," he said.

Gibson has definite ideas about how Ireland should approach Germany on their own patch and naturally enough packing midfield is on his agenda.

"I think it would be a good idea because they've got some good players and you've seen what happened in the last game so it wouldn't be a bad idea to fill the midfield. We're going to need to get our tactics spot on to get a result."

He grimaced when asked about that awful night in the Aviva a year ago. He watched the game and saw what everyone saw. What went wrong?

"Well, everything obviously. We're not thinking about the last game, we've got to move on. We've got to get our tactics right and hopefully our tactics work for us. Hopefully we get the right result," he added. And the man who will dictate the strategy has met with Gibson's approval. Noel King is winning hearts and minds within the squad.

Manager

"It's been good. He has got his idea of how he wants us to play, it's been quite good. We're getting there," he said.

"There have been a few different shapes. It depends on how he wants to play."

Gibson does not believe that the players are thinking about the probability that Ireland's new manager will be watching events in Cologne and that's something of a tribute to King.

"I don't think it will be. I think the lads are going out under Noel and will respect him and try and get a result for him," Gibson said.

"Two good performances and hopefully we get the points, that's what everyone wants.

"We've had a few injuries but if we stick to our tactics and plan, we can get a good result. I think the lads believe what he is saying and we're going there to get a result. We're not going to lie down."


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