Friday 25 May 2018

O'Dea insists the Ireland squad still supports Trapattoni

DARREN O'Dea has insisted he and his Ireland team-mates remain firmly behind manager Giovanni Trapattoni.

The 73-year-old Italian found himself in the headlines in the wake of Friday night's 6-1 World Cup qualifier hammering by Germany at the Aviva Stadium as speculation mounted that he would be out of his job by the end of this week.

But as he headed out of Torshavn after last night's 4-1 victory over the Faroe Islands and then on to his home in Milan on Wednesday morning, Trapattoni was still, for the time being at least, Ireland manager.

Just how long that remains the case is still a matter of conjecture, but O'Dea, whose first senior international goal cemented victory at the Torsvollur Stadium, is adamant that whatever the talk outside the camp, there is a unity within it.

"I don't like when people say, 'I don't read the press'. Every footballer knows - they are not stupid - they know what's going on," he said.

"But God's honest truth, there is no uncertainty and there's no speculation within the team. The team knows the score, and that's that the boss is the boss and everyone believes in him 100 per cent.

"That's not a cliche to cover things up, it's true. There is no uncertainty within that team and the whole camp.

"Whatever happens outside, we know about it, but as long as the team sticks together and the staff stick together, it's not really a problem."

Most of the 10 Board members of the Football Association of Ireland were in Torshavn on Tuesday night, but there was no comment from chief executive John Delaney on Trapattoni's future either before or after the game.

It is believed the board is due to meet on the matter next week.

The man himself has repeatedly insisted he is going nowhere and was on Tuesday night already turning his attention to next month's friendly clash with Greece at the Aviva Stadium. But his position remains uncertain and the fact remains that he could indeed have taken charge of his final game.

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