Sunday 19 May 2019

Leaving Las Vegas no worry for McCarthy as teen Travers gets the nod

Tottenham's Hugo Lloris talks with Bournemouth's Mark Travers after their match last weekend. Photo: Reuters
Tottenham's Hugo Lloris talks with Bournemouth's Mark Travers after their match last weekend. Photo: Reuters

Aidan Fitzmaurice

What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, as far as Mick McCarthy is concerned, as he says he trusts his Ireland players to enjoy their end-of-season celebrations while also staying in shape for international duty next month.

McCarthy is still in the quiet spell of his reign as Ireland boss, duties mainly involving scouting missions, like his wasted trip to see Dan Crowley in the Dutch Cup final last weekend, and PR outings.

The Ireland manager was in Trim yesterday to help launch the town's hosting of the FAI AGM and "festival of football" in July. McCarthy left to face the media while FAI vice-president Noel Fitzroy, the most senior official at the event, remained silent.

McCarthy has named a 30-strong squad for a training camp in Portugal in two weeks' time, and there is no place for Martin O'Neill favourite Cyrus Christie or James McCarthy, though Shamrock Rovers man Jack Byrne keeps his place as does teenage 'keeper Mark Travers (Bournemouth).

Success in the promotion play-offs could keep Glenn Whelan and Conor Hourihane (Aston Villa), Richard Keogh (Derby County), Ronan Curtis (Portsmouth) and Josh Cullen (Charlton) away from Ireland duty, should their sides make play-off finals.

Reward The four-strong Sheffield United contingent (John Egan, Enda Stevens, David McGoldrick and Scott Hogan) have no such worries as their club have already been promoted to the Premier League.

Their reward is a club trip to Las Vegas, but McCarthy is confident they will be able to celebrate and then report for duty.

"The way I manage it is go and enjoy it because you've had 46 games in the league to get into the Premier League. Me telling them to do anything else will not make the blind bit of difference. I might as well embrace it and tell them to go and enjoy it," says McCarthy.

"I've got to trust them, haven't I? What am I going to do? Sheffield United got promoted so they're going to go away and go and enjoy it. I can't imagine for one minute that two or three of them are going to be in the gym doing a bit while the rest of them are out doing what you do in Las Vegas."

McCarthy says he's enthused by the sight of Kildare lad Travers (19) keeping a clean sheet on his Premier League debut for the Cherries. "It's no surprise that he did well," McCarthy says.

But he regrets Sunday's trip to watch Willem II man Crowley in the Dutch Cup final defeat to Ajax as the playmaker was only a sub: "I saw him for about 15 minutes. He barely had anything to do."

Irish Independent

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