Next Game

Hungary v N Ireland

Sunday, 07 September 2014, 17:00

Euro 2016 Qualifying Group F

Last Game

Chile 2 - 0 N Ireland

Thursday, 05 June 2014, 01:00

International Match

No concerns for NI boss

Northern Ireland boss Michael O'Neill is confident his namesake Martin's appointment as the Republic of Ireland boss will have no impact on the issue of player eligibility.

Last Updated: 06/11/13 at 09:52 Post Comment

Michael O'Neill: Unconcerned by namesake's appointment

Michael O'Neill: Unconcerned by namesake's appointment

Bet £10 Get £30

Daily Offers And Promotions. Join Now & Bet £10 and Get a £30 Free Bet

In recent years a number of high-profile players born in Northern Ireland have opted to play for the Republic, a flow O'Neill has been keen to stem since taking over the reins of the national side.

Darron Gibson, James McClean and Marc Wilson chose to represent the Republic despite being born in Northern Ireland, as they took advantage of a FIFA ruling giving them the option of playing for either country.

But, despite Martin O'Neill having captained the Northern Ireland team as a player, Michael sees no reason why this should impact on players' choice of country in the future.

"I don't think it will be an issue at all to be honest," he said. "It doesn't really matter who is in charge of the Republic in terms of the eligibility question.

"My focus, pure and simple, is to make sure that our young players know what we are trying to do as an association and what we are trying to build with our younger players in terms of giving them the chance of having an international career.

"I know most of our young age-group footballers by name and have worked on the training pitch with them and hopefully that is a help.

"I've spoken to Martin on a few occasions and he was very helpful to me before I took this job and since. He'll just be another international manager to me, no different to Roy Hodgson, Chris Coleman or Gordon Strachan.

"This whole issue is probably more of a media thing than it is for me or Martin."

Bet £10 Get £30

Daily Offers And Promotions. Join Now & Bet £10 and Get a £30 Free Bet

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

G

reat article. Hits the nail on the head. Encapsulates why I don't read tabloid newspapers anymore. The only thing worse is the 'told you so first' headline when they get lucky.

ianonabeach
Time To Burst The ITK Bubble

F

amous. If that can be achieved whilst sitting in your pants and without any degree of hard work, all the better. I have no desire to be famous, but the rest of that line suits me just fine. Great article by the way, well worth the wait.

hunter sanchez
Time To Burst The ITK Bubble

T

here seems to be little focus on the performance of Besiktas. They played very well and stopped Arsenal from playing. Credit has to go to their manager. As much as Arsenal didn't play too well, we kept a clean sheet, but the home side made it very difficult.

Geddy76
Chambers' Poise Impresses Again

Footer 365

Transfer News: Swansea complete deal for Napoli defender Federico Fernandez

Swansea City have signed defender Federico Fernandez from Napoli for an undisclosed fee.

FIFA committee rejects Barcelona's appeal against transfer ban

Barcelona will be unable to sign new players in the next two windows after a FIFA committee upheld their transfer ban.

Transfer news: Thomas Muller rejected approach from Manchester United

Bayern Munich forward Thomas Muller has admitted to rejecting a lucrative offer to join Manchester United.

Mail Box

Mailbox: Feeling Sorry For Poor TC23

If there's one loser in all the machinations at Man United, it's poor TC23. We have mercifully few mails on United, but lots on Arsenal and in particular Olivier Giroud...

Dear Brendan, Please Sign Di Maria

That's the request to Brendan Rodgers in the mailbox, and not just because it would annoy Man United fans. Plus, more thoughts on why Arsenal didn't want Cescy back...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property