Saturday 7 December 2019

McGeady: I'm ready to block out boos and deliver goods

Republic of Ireland's Aiden McGeady during squad training
Republic of Ireland's Aiden McGeady during squad training
Daniel McDonnell

Daniel McDonnell

AIDEN MCGEADY is prepared for the inevitability of booing from Scotland fans in Glasgow tomorrow night but has promised not to get caught up in the occasion.

The 28-year-old has been at the centre of a debate about background heading into the huge Euro 2016 qualifier.

However, the Scottish-born winger says that he is endeavouring to treat the local derby as just another match, regardless of comments beforehand such as Gordon McQueen’s expressed wish that McGeady and James McCarthy receive a ‘horrible’ reception.

“If you break it down, it’s just another game of football isn’t it?” said McGeady in a video that was broadcast on the FAI’s online channel.

“Obviously there is people coming out in the press saying their bit about myself and James getting booed or whatever. That’s part and parcel of football, it’s going to happen.

“I’ve tried to distance myself from that and not get too caught up in it. All I have to do is try and play the way I can and help the team get a positive result.”

Declared

McGeady declared for Ireland in his mid-teens when Scotland were slow to act and has consistently pointed out that he has no regrets.

The emotion tomorrow will be drawn from a return to his spiritual home at Celtic Park, although he does have experience of doing so with Spartak Moscow.

Some old faces from his Celtic journey, including Scott Brown, Charlie Mulgrew and Shaun Maloney, could be in opposition.

McGeady asserted that the Irish group will arrive in good spirits following their brave draw in Gelsenkirchen. “Since I’ve been involved, we’ve never gone away to Germany or somewhere like that and got a result, so everyone felt we turned the corner a little bit,” he stressed.

“We probably got out of jail a bit in Georgia and (in) the summer games and friendlies before, we didn’t do as well we could have, so maybe everyone was a bit apprehensive.”

On a personal level, the Everton man hinted that he expects to return to a wide berth tomorrow after featuring in a central role behind Robbie Keane in Germany. He had more joy when switched to his natural position.

“In training I would always drift inside,” he said, “But I know it’s not the same thing. It’s one of those where if the manager says play wherever, you’re going to say ‘no problem.’

“Off the striker, you’ve got that licence to play inside and create a little bit more. I don’t think I would play there against Scotland but you never know. . . we’ll see.”

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