Monday 14 October 2019

Seamus Coleman: No margin for error against Faroes

Republic of Ireland's Seamus Coleman
Republic of Ireland's Seamus Coleman

Damian Spellman

Seamus Coleman has warned the Republic of Ireland they have no margin for error as they prepare for their must-win World Cup qualifier against the Faroe Islands.

Ireland returned from last night's eagerly-anticipated trip to England with a 1-1 draw to go with the fine point they claimed in Sweden in March to further enhance their reputation on the road.


However, while they have gone some of the way to rebuilding confidence after a poor Euro 2012 finals campaign and their 6-1 humiliation by Germany in October, Coleman knows it will count for little if they do not do the job against the Group C minnows on Friday evening.


The 24-year-old Everton full-back said: "Obviously, the lads were disappointed in the summer. The Euros, it was great to qualify, even though I didn't play a part, but obviously I know the lads were disappointed.


"But we have had a couple of good results now against Sweden and now England, and that gives us a bit of confidence.


"But the reason we are on this trip is for three points against the Faroe Islands. We are not looking any further than the Faroe Islands, to be honest.


"We have got a game against Georgia that we have got to prepare for. I'm sure there are lads who weren't in the team who might get a run-out and they will want to impress to get in the team.


"The reason for this trip is definitely to get three points against the Faroes because we can't afford to slip up."


Manager Giovanni Trapattoni will use Sunday's clash with the Georgians to hone his plan for the Faroe Islands, but Coleman seems a certain starter after taking his fine club form on to the international stage this season.


He appears to have made the right-back spot his own, although the modest former Sligo Rovers player refuses to take anything for granted.


Coleman said: "I am one of those players, I go out in every game like I am on a trial. I want to give 100 per cent every week and make sure I stay in the team.


"If I am not playing well, I won't stay in the team, so it's something I have to keep on top of."


The current campaign has proved something of a watershed for Coleman, who seems to have made the progression from promising youngster to genuine starter for both club and country.


Experience has undoubtedly been a factor in that process, but he believes there is an even more fundamental reason for his rapid development.


He said: "I think part of the reason maybe is that I'm finally getting to play in my proper position.


"I went from Sligo as a right-back - I have always been a right-back. I played a couple of seasons in right midfield, which I enjoyed and I gained a lot of experience, but it wasn't my strongest position.


"But I learned a lot from it and it's definitely helped me in my full-back role."


Coleman was the Republic's stand-out performer at Wembley, making two vital goal-line interceptions at one end and providing the pinpoint cross from which striker Shane Long headed the visitors into a 13th-minute lead.


Trapattoni is notoriously conservative in his approach, but while he has impressed upon the youngster the importance of his defensive duties, he is keen for him to contribute as an attacking force too.


Coleman said: "He has said to pick my moments, but it's part of my game anyway.


"I like to get forward - obviously, you have your defensive duties to look after as well, but I think you would find it hard to hold me back because it's something I enjoy doing."

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