Important Not To Put Too Much Pressure On Declan Rice

Martin O’Neill has spoken about the lack of depth the Republic of Ireland have in the front line.

New Additions To The Irish Squad
Graham Burke has been playing very well for Shamrock Rovers and as we don’t have a lot of depth up front it’s a good opportunity to get him in and have a look at him. Will he be a consistent starter? Probably not.

But if he can show consistent form for Shamrock Rovers and perhaps go over to England to get some game time at a serious level, maybe then he can get some game time in the Irish team. It’s great for the League Of Ireland that he’s managed to force his way into Martin O’Neill’s reckoning.

There are one or two others who have been playing in the League Of Ireland who have been called in like Conor O’Malley who had been playing in Ireland and now plays for Peterborough; it’s great that he’s been called in also.

It’s like a new beginning, there are some good games over the Summer.

Martin O’Neill can have a look at some new players in the training camps and in the games and it’s about looking forward to the competitive friendlies with Wales and Denmark and then qualification for the Euros.

Declan Rice’s Form Continues To Improve
Declan Rice has been simply outstanding across the course of the season.

He has made mistakes and he’s going to make more but he’s still a teenager, he’s still learning. He’s learning from some of the best players around and those players he’s competing against every week. He’s had a great season and it’s all about progression for him.

It will be great to have him back in amongst the Irish squad for the friendlies we’ve got coming up. We’re all hopeful, given his talent and his composure and mentality, it looks like he has all the attributes to be a top defender for us going forward.

I don’t want to put too much pressure on him. There is a tendency to heap praise on players too quickly but hopefully he can progress and improve in the years to come.