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Walters ready to play his part in crunch play-off

GIOVANNI Trapattoni is never shy about following a hunch and it could well be that Jonathan Walters is the latest in a long line of late arrivals to the international game.

Glenn Whelan and Keith Andrews have both made massive gains from their status as Trapattoni's first-choice midfield. They moved from the wilderness to first-team status rapidly and circumstances could hand Walters a similar opportunity.

Everyone was greatly impressed by Walters' impact in the last quarter of the home game against Armenia; how he carried the fight back into the opposition penalty area when his team mates showed signs of panic.

Trapattoni sat up and took notice too and the consequences of that could be a starting role for Walters in Tallinn alongside Robbie Keane.

"I'd love to play some part in the game -- I feel I played my part in the last game," he said.

"I went on to do a job. If the manager tells me to go on and do a certain job, that's what I'll do and I'll try to do the best I can."

Those are words that Trapattoni loves to hear.

Walters added: "I was happy with what I did. It was backs against the wall and I tried to hold it up and take the pressure off."

It is an understatement to say that Walters' staccato international career has been a source of frustration to him, particularly when he fell foul of Trapattoni's campaign against what he felt was poor communication and commitment from some players.

"I've had a lot of bad timing. I was desperate to turn up and then I'd get injuries and have to pull out."

He played with heavy strapping on a fractured shoulder for the second half of last season, which wasn't a bad excuse when it came to his withdrawal from Trapattoni's summer schedule squad.

But that's in the past and Walters wants to look forward.

His priority during training will be to show Trapattoni that he can play with Robbie Keane.

"I can play with Robbie, why not?

"I've played with five or six different strikers in the last two years. The way I've adapted to each player is important.

"I've watched Robbie and I think I can work well with him."


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