'It's mad, it really is mad' - Eamon Dunphy's brutal verdict on Ireland's new era under O'Neill and Keane
Eamon Dunphy served up a damning verdict as a new-look Ireland team lost 1-0 to Turkey, as he told RTÉ 2fm's Game On show that the national team will continue to be stuck in neurtal so long as Martin O'Neill remains in charge.
Dunphy has been an outspoken critic of O'Neill in the last couple of years and he didn't hold back in his condemnation of the Ireland manager and his tactics on a night when Declan Rice, Seanie Maguire and Scott Hogan were handed starts against the Turks.
"They tried new players and he had a partnership up front of Hogan and Maguire," declared Dunphy. "Neither of them are tall and we are pumping long balls up to them. It's mad, it really is mad.
"If you play Maguire and Hogan, there is no point pumping long balls up to them. They need the ball played to feet. They are not using the attributes they have.
"This is the football of yesterday or, in fact, the day before yesterday. We are not playing a particularly good side, the lads are doing their best, but there is no sign that Ireland will change.
"It should be the beginning of a new era, but it is very, vary hard to see Martin O'Neill changing the way he wants to play.
"I mean, he played James McClean in a left back position in Turkey. James McClean is not a left back. he is a very dangerous left winger. At least he has no Wes (Hoolahan) to get rid of now and that makes life easier for him."
Dunphy went on to question O'Neill's policy of naming his team an hour before kick-off, as he suggested that much-discussed tactic will continue to backfire on his team.
"Every team works on preparation, especially at international level when you only have four days with the group, with the players that are going to start," stated Dunphy.
"The set-pieces at both ends, but we gave a stupid goal away from a set-piece against Turkey and just before we gave the goal away, we should have given another goal away from a set-piece. Now, you can't work on set-pieces if you don't know who is going to be in the team and that has been a constant problem for Ireland."