Foley returns home

Foley returns home

Kevin Foley has returned home 24 hours after learning he had not been included in the final Republic of Ireland squad for Euro 2102.

The 27-year-old full-back left the Republic’s pre-tournament headquarters in Tuscany this morning having declined manager Giovanni Trapattoni’s offer to stay with the party.

A Football Association of Ireland spokesman said: “Kevin Foley left the hotel at about 10.30am this morning accompanied by two members of FAI staff and took a flight to return to his family.

“Giovanni Trapattoni was there to say goodbye to him as he left.”

Wolves defender Foley was stunned to discover that his place in the original 23 had been given to Paul McShane, one of five men included on a stand-by list, when the squad was submitted to UEFA ahead of yesterday's deadline.

Foley had spent the previous week or so battling to shake off a hamstring injury confident that he would be on the plane to Poland next week.

However, with John O’Shea still nursing an ankle problem and Darren O’Dea having missed training earlier this week with a thigh strain, Trapattoni decided he needed more cover for the central defensive positions, something McShane offers.

Foley appeared as a substitute in last night’s 5-0 friendly victory over a Tuscan Select XI in Pistoia, after which he revealed he felt “betrayed” by the 73-year-old Italian’s decision.

He indicated then that he would not stay with the squad for the remainder of the training camp and Monday’s final warm-up game against Hungary in Budapest, and that proved to be the case today.

Trapattoni revealed his regret at having to make the decision, but insisted he had had to do so for the sake of his team and the nation.

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