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'I'm not going to discard anyone' - new Ireland boss keeps options open

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Republic of Ireland manager Stephen Kenny. Photo: Harry Murphy/Sportsfile

Republic of Ireland manager Stephen Kenny. Photo: Harry Murphy/Sportsfile

SPORTSFILE

Republic of Ireland manager Stephen Kenny. Photo: Harry Murphy/Sportsfile

It was more a statement of fact than a cheap shot, but Stephen Kenny still made a point - and a strong one - about the team he inherited from Mick McCarthy.

"You have to respect the players who played in the campaign, but we only won one of the six games in the group, if you take the Gibraltar games out," Kenny said yesterday.

'Respect' can often be a loaded word. And there are players in the Ireland squad who could fear that a mixture of a poor qualifying campaign and the arrival of a new manager who has worked with the most exciting batch of young Irish in a generation (maybe even the most exciting ever) could signal the end of their international careers.