Talbot's boost for 'makeshift' Bohs
As problems go, getting a player to focus on the bread and butter of league duty after a two-week spell of mixing it, at home and abroad, with the senior Ireland squad is a welcome one for Bohemians boss Keith Long.
The Gypsies' manager has reason to be cheerful ahead of tonight's Dublin derby at home to Shamrock Rovers, as his club enjoy a head-spinning return of results from the fixture (six wins and a draw from the last seven meetings).
Reasons to be fearful too for Long. He is missing the entire back four which played in their most recent win over Rovers, a 1-0 victory in Tallaght in April, and he's also without the goalscorer that day, Dinny Corcoran. Bohs will have what Long admits is a "makeshift back four", including one player, Andy Lyons, who has the added stress of sitting his Leaving Cert this month and James Talbot, who is returning from international duty with the Ireland squad.
Long's feedback is that Talbot (22) was "nervous and a bit apprehensive" at first but found his feet, and can hope for more.
"He's a really top 'keeper as his displays all season have shown us and he has a certain sense of belief that he can, with a bit of luck, get into that squad on a consistent basis," said Long.
Bohemians v Shamrock Rovers, Live, eir Sport 1, 8.0