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Tuesday 27 September 2016

Martin O'Neill: 'I'll manage the Republic of Ireland my way'

'You be in that team and you be ready whether I tell you on Thursday or Saturday morning or 15 minutes before I'm due to annouce the team'

Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill, right, speaks with assistant coach Roy Keane
Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill, right, speaks with assistant coach Roy Keane

MARTIN O'Neill has rejected criticism of his management style and told his detractors that he will do the job his own way and no other.

The Ireland boss has been questioned on team selection and the delay in telling players whether they are in or out - but he is unapologetic about his methods.

"They'll know the team when I want to tell them. Unless he is three years of age and he wants to know so that he has a good's night sleep with a rattle," he scoffed. "These are men.

"When we gather on a Monday night, I don't go up to their rooms and ask them when they would like to know when the team is being announced. You know what I like to say to them? You're very lucky to be here.

"I tell them, you be in that team and you be ready, whether I tell you on a Thursday or whether I tell you on a Saturday morning or whether I tell you 15 minutes before I'm due to announce the team.

"Be ready. Be ready for the game."

O'Neill's use of Wes Hoolahan also been a source of debate.

"I think Wes is a very, very talented player, particularly here when we have to try and be inventive and try and unlock defences at the Aviva.

"For Poland, he was coming in with confidence, not one of those where sometime before he'd been left out of the Norwich side and hadn't played in four or five weeks," O'Neill said.

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