Sunday 21 January 2018

Brian Kerr believes Trap had "little interest" in Irish football

Giovanni Trapattoni's side slipped to a 1-0 defeat to Austria
Giovanni Trapattoni's side slipped to a 1-0 defeat to Austria

Former Republic of Ireland manager Brian Kerr has accused Giovanni Trapattoni of having “little interest” in Irish football as the FAI ended the 74-year-old Italian’s tenure in charge.

Kerr, who achieved huge success with Irish underage teams before taking over the senior job for a two-year stint in 2003, believes that Trap’s relationship with the public has been worsening in recent times.

“Apart from not going to matches, he has taken very little interest in Irish football in general,” Kerr told RTE Radio this morning.

“Maybe that wasn’t in his remit but he got disconnected completely with Irish football people and Irish football.

“The gates have been falling in recent years because of the style of football.

“I think it’s gone now. The point of not going to watch players was criminal from the beginning. I didn’t know how he got away with it in the early stages.

“He has often talked about the little details being so important. Making those vital decisions on who should play and who should not play means that you must go and assess them.

“I think the FAI had at least three people performing that role for him.

“I don’t think any international football manager would consider not going to see players on a regular basis and not be in touch with them.”

The 60-year-old Dubliner admits that Trap was successful in his first two qualification campaigns but that the team’s performance in this group has been poor ever since the fortuitous 2-1 win in Astana last year.

“I felt it was slipping towards this inevitable end right through this group with the match in Kazakhstan which was an abysmal performance,” he added.

“Then we got a hiding off Germany, we’ve ended up beating the Faroes twice, beating Kazakhstan, a draw and a loss to Sweden and a draw and a loss to Austria.”

Kerr believes that the FAI will use a similar selection process to the one which saw Trapattoni appointed when Ray Houghton, Don Howe and Don Givens were drafted in to oversee things and make recommendations.

“I think they are more likely to go for some kind of outside influence so if it goes wrong they won’t get blamed,” Kerr told Miriam O’Callaghan.

“There have been several candidates mentioned like Mick McCarthy and Martin O’Neill.

“I wouldn’t have a problem with either of them. Mick did a fine job and Martin is a very good manager but I’m sure there will be a lot of names coming into the picture if this process does start up.”

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