Wednesday 13 December 2017

Roy Keane: 'People have done a lot more for their country than break their legs. They've died for their country'

Ireland assistant manager Roy Keane speaks to the media ahead of Austria clash
Ireland assistant manager Roy Keane speaks to the media ahead of Austria clash

Harry Clarke

Ireland assistant manager Roy Keane has emphatically sounded the battle cry ahead of Sunday's crunch World Cup qualifier against Austria at the Aviva Stadium.

A win for Martin O'Neill's men would all but rule out Austria in the race for qualification from Group D and would put the Boys In Green at least four points ahead of Wales - who are away to Serbia - with four games remaining.

Speaking ahead of the clash today, Roy Keane confirmed that Jon Walters has overcome an injury problem and is fit to play and issued a firm warning to Marcel Koller's Austria: "We are going to war against them. Come Sunday, talk is cheap."

When asked about a potential fiery atmosphere, Keane added: "I don't think that temperament has ever been an issue with our lads. As usual we want players playing on the edge, lads putting their bodies on the line. Players like Seamus Coleman. You go out on the pitch and be able to accept whatever goes on.

"Like Seamus breaking his leg...People have done a lot more for their country than break their legs. They've died for their country so we want our lads to put their bodies on the line and give it everything they have got."

Coleman has joined up with the Ireland squad and will offer a calming and motivational influence for the rest of the camp.

"Seamus seems fine, he was in good spirits last night," said Keane.

With Keiren Westwood and Darren Randolph both vying for the number one jersey, O'Neill has a tough decision to make.

"Thats right, yeah. Tell me something I don't know. That's what he's (O'Neill) paid to do. That's the game you are in, you have to make decisions.

"We have good options with the goalkeepers. The manager will speak to Seamus McDonagh who is brilliant with them, whoever starts in goal, I'm pretty sure they won't let us down.

"We'll get back into the ring on Sunday, that's what we're here for. Don't lose sleep about the manager having to make tough decisions, it's the name of the game."

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