Friday 22 March 2019

Seamus Coleman acting as mediator in dispute between Roy Keane and Harry Arter despite injury blow

Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Ireland captain Seamus Coleman has been in contact with Harry Arter over his possible return to Martin O'Neill's squad for next month's games against Wales and Denmark in Dublin.

Arter has been caught in the eye of a storm, as his fall-out with Ireland assistant manager Roy Keane has exploded into the public eye after the Sunday World revealed details behind the spat and an audio recording of Ireland defender Stephen Ward giving his version of the showdown emerged on Monday.

After O'Neill confirmed that he has asked Keane to speak to Arter in a bid to end their feud, it can be revealed that Coleman has been trying to negotiate an end to the dispute that has rocked Irish soccer.

Arter and Coleman have exchanged messages over the last two weeks and it is believed the Irish captain has spoken to O'Neill about a possible return for the Cardiff midfielder next month.

It's understood Arter would be open to a comeback as O'Neill and Keane look to restore stability after a turbulent few weeks.

Meanwhile, there was bad news on the injury front for Coleman.

The Everton full-back travelled to Poland for Tuesday night's 1-1 draw with the rest of the squad despite being ruled out of the game with a foot injury sustained in Thursday night's 4-1 defeat by Wales.

Speaking afterwards, O'Neill told RTE Sport: "Seamus went for a scan. He has a little stress fracture, which is a concern. He could easily have got a flight home, but he stayed with the team.

"He is a great captain, a really great captain. He is inspirational and obviously we hope he is back in time for the games coming up."

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