Wednesday 21 February 2018

Good week/bad week for the Ireland players

GOOD WEEK

Aiden McGeady

Two good back-to-back displays from the Spartak Moscow star, who has a good rapport with Martin O'Neill and could become a big player in 2014, especially if he lands a move to England in January.

James McClean

Aside from the latest Twitter storm, which unfortunately coincided with a slow news day, the Derry man has looked revitalised by the change of management and illustrated the danger he presents when on song. O'Neill can draw the best from him.

Paul Green

O'Neill admitted on Tuesday night that he didn't really know very much about the Leeds midfielder but praised his "fine" contribution in Poznan. There was a lazy presumption that Green would be cast aside by the new regime, but he has earned another call-up.

Wes Hoolahan

Early signs are that O'Neill and Keane will place their trust in the Dubliner and, unlike Trapattoni, can see the merits of sacrificing a striker and involving the playmaker – particularly in home matches. Nevertheless, he'll have to improve his dire club situation.

BAD WEEK FOR...

Sean St Ledger

On his first start since August, the defender failed to make it through the first half. He now has the 'injury-prone' label attached to him and with Marc Wilson trialled at centre-half and Ciaran Clark and Richard Dunne to come back into the frame, he could struggle.

Keiren Westwood

Could take some positives from being selected for the Latvia game, but in terms of the battle for the No 1 spot, David Forde was given far more work to do against the Poles and handled it well.

Anthony Pilkington

The injured Norwich midfielder tweeted about the drama of Portugal and Sweden on Tuesday night before belatedly acknowledging Ireland's Polish encounter. O'Neill's fondness for McGeady and McClean could reduce him to a spectating role on a longer-term basis.

Anthony Stokes

The Dubliner has grown into a player that can offer a lot but he didn't really seize the moment in this double-header. Was only given 10 minutes to shine in the Aviva and was then ineffective on the tricky surface in Poznan that hindered creativity.

Irish Independent

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