Sunday 21 January 2018

McGeady still has a future at Everton, insists Martinez

Everton manager Roberto Martinez has insisted that Aiden McGeady remains in his plans.
Everton manager Roberto Martinez has insisted that Aiden McGeady remains in his plans.
Daniel McDonnell

Daniel McDonnell

Everton manager Roberto Martinez has insisted that Aiden McGeady remains in his plans.

The Ireland international is drawing towards the end of a disappointing campaign - his last club appearance came against Crystal Palace at the end of January.

A knee injury and then a back problem contributed to his lengthy absence, yet he did play for Ireland in March but failed to make the match-day squad at Everton at times when he has been fit.

Martinez thinks that any form issues with the 29-year-old can be attributed to a slow adjustment to the English game.

"The injury after the Crystal Palace game was a really frustrating moment because that day I felt was Aiden at his peak," said the Spaniard.

"It takes a long time, coming from abroad to get the rhythm of the British game - remember Aiden had never played in the Premier League before, only in the Scottish League, and he had been a long time in Russia.

"So he had to adapt into the league and the way we play and I felt at Crystal Palace, those 90 minutes were Aiden.

"The injury was a real setback and so he is going to take time to get that intensity and match-fitness back," Martinez continued. "But Aiden, at Everton, is ready to be himself and I am looking forward to seeing that."


Meanwhile, it was a difficult day for a host of other Irish players as clubs in the Championship and the lower leagues began to announce the players they will be releasing on free transfers.

The news will not have come as a surprise to all of the individuals involved, given that they are frequently informed in advance.

Birmingham have shown three Irishmen the door, with long-serving goalkeeper Colin Doyle the highest-profile departure.

The 29-year-old joined the club as a teenager and made 63 appearances, primarily operating as understudy for the majority of his stay. He has been unable to dislodge Darren Randolph from the side and is also behind him in the international pecking order.

Randolph's contract is up for renewal and Birmingham are fighting to keep him.

Former Irish U-21 international Callum Reilly and injury-plagued Gavin Gunning have also been released.

Three ex-League of Ireland men are looking for a new club, with Paul Corry parting company with Sheffield Wednesday, Huddersfield showing Jake Carroll the door and Padraig Amond let go by Morecambe.

Corry is a long-term target of Chesterfield boss Paul Cook, whose own future is up in the air, with Portsmouth seeking to appoint him as their new boss.

Irish Independent

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