Wednesday, 25 April, 2018


Roy Keane to leave too if Martin O'Neill joins Stoke

Martin O'Neill was unhappy with some of the criticism he received in the aftermath of the Denmark loss.                     Image Niall Carson Martin O'Neill was unhappy with some of the criticism he received in the aftermath of the Denmark loss. Image Niall Carson
Patty Aguilar | 12 January, 2018, 23:43

Former Ireland captain Keane would be tipped to compete for the post, were O'Neill to quit, but the indications are that he's also eager to make a Premier League comeback and could deem this a better route into an eventual managerial post in the UK.

Stoke have had to rejig their managerial wanted list after Gary Rowett signed a new deal on Tuesday night to stay in charge at Derby until 2021 with former Watford boss Quique Sanchez Flores, now in charge of La Liga club Espanyol, emerging as the frontrunner for the Stoke job. Rowett, however, responded to speculation by emphatically ending it - he signed a new contract with Derby County.

RTE pundit Dunphy has been critical of O'Neill in the past but this time has taken aim at the association.

He told RTE Radio 1: "It's embarrassing for the FAI".

Still, the contract remained unsigned and there was a degree of pantomime to the recent assertion by FAI treasurer Eddie Murray that they expected O'Neill to rubberstamp the deal.

"He spoke to Stoke with a view to becoming their new manager but they appear now to have a preference for Quique Sánchez Flores".

"I believe the Stoke board were split on who they should appoint - in the end they've gone for Sánchez Flores".

O'Neill verbally agreed a new two year deal before last October's World Cup qualifier against Wales, but much like his previous extension, O'Neill was slow to put pen to paper and the contract was never signed with the FAI.

"It's like being engaged - you shouldn't be going out with other people".

Episode 45 of The Hard Yards rugby podcast features an interview with former Munster outhalf Johnny Holland, while James Downey joins us in studio.

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