Tuesday 25 October 2016

Quinn keen to take initiative early

AS befits a nation which has the longest-running chat show in the world, Ireland have put on a few Late, Late Shows in the current qualifying campaign.

Last-minute goals have gained Ireland a win (in Georgia) and two draws (against Germany and Poland), and without those late strikers, the Group D table would appear very grim when viewed through Irish eyes.

But Stephen Quinn, who has played a key role in parts of this campaign (like his unexpected, but impressive, start in Georgia), feels that tomorrow's clash with Scotland is time for Ireland to seize the initiative and not go chasing things late on.

"Maybe we should start on the front foot a bit more and try to get those early goals," says Quinn.

"We have got to score the early goals, we want to, but if it has to be late tomorrow then it will be.

"I don't think we have gone into games thinking 'We will wait until the last 10 minutes to nick a goal', it's the way the game develops and what happens throughout it. If we are a goal down, we are pushing for goals, so maybe that's why we are getting late goals."

Quinn only made his competitive international debut in this campaign, away to Georgia in September, but he has forced himself into the manager's thoughts.

He may, however, not get to start against Scotland as the Hull City man admits that his size may count against him if it's a straight fight between himself and fellow Dub (and LOI graduate), Wes Hoolahan.

"It would be nice to play with Weso sometimes but maybe it might be a bit ... there's not much height between the two of us so I don't know if the two of us could play together, but I'd love that," he says with a smile.

"I don't know if it is between me and Weso to start, there are other lads there who have thrown their names in the hat.

"I think everyone will want to play because it's such a massive game."

Quinn came on as a second-half sub for Darron Gibson in the game away to Scotland, and he admits Ireland need an improvement on that display.

"It wasn't the best of games," says Quinn, whose club career is uncertain now as he's out of contract with relegated Hull City but has yet to accept their offer of a new deal.

"We didn't impress up there, but hopefully with us being back at home now the fans can get behind us and we can beat them. That's what we want to do. We need the three points."

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