“I’m just looking to impress the two new managers because everything changes and you want to get into their team.”
Seamus Coleman said that during the week, inadvertently suggesting the Irish football team is now under dual management.
And who could honestly blame him for the slip of the tongue, given the continents of newsprint and oceans of airtime already devoted to the ‘dream team’, ‘the dynamic duo’ and even ‘the odd couple’.
For skipper Robbie Keane — who’d previously said he’d be happy with either Martin O’Neill, Mick McCarthy or Roy Keane as the new Ireland manager — two heads are definitely better than one.
“When we were here the last time, three names were mentioned and I didn’t think we’d have two of them here, to be honest with you,” Keane said with a grin yesterday.
“I haven’t had the pleasure of working with Martin before. I didn’t think I would get the opportunity, but, thankfully, I have and, as the gaffer says, the last few days have been very enjoyable, everyone has been on form and looking forward to a new chapter in Irish football.
“When I came into the squad first I was a young player coming through and Roy was a player that everyone looked up to and respected. For me coming in, he was always great. People tended to see the negative side but he was always great with me and Damien Duff, he would always speak to us.
“People forget this, but Roy is a very funny guy when you actually sit down beside him. He’s very charming, I haven’t had any problems with him. You judge people on how they treat you, and he was always good to me. I think you have seen the response (to the appointment) in the last few weeks, from the whole nation, it has been incredible.
“Everybody wanted that lift and you don’t get two bigger characters than Martin and Roy. Everyone is enthusiastic about this partnership and the players are too.”
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