Brady: 'I'm getting back to my best'
There was a time when the notion of Robbie Brady being dropped by an Ireland manager was unthinkable.
It's very much a reality, as Brady had to settle for a place on the bench for last week's Euro 2020 game away to Gibraltar, though he was restored to the starting XI for Tuesday's win over Georgia, The hero of Lille had become (briefly) a fringe figure.
And Brady admits that he has work to do before he can win back a place in the side on a regular basis, the Dubliner still waiting for force his way back into the Burnley side since his long absence due to injury
"I can't come in expecting to play when I'm not playing, especially on the back of my long injury," Brady admits.
"I was delighted to play, every minute counts and I'm feeling stronger as the weeks go on.
"I think I expected that when I got the injury for the nine months, for me to be back to my best after, that wasn't the case, my body wasn't allowing it.
"But I'm feeling stronger now, and I'm getting back to where I need to be."
It's been a difficult spell for Brady, with club and country. The injury sustained in December 2017 meant he was out of action for a long spell, missing the vast majority of the games on the international calendar last year before he returned against Northern Ireland and Denmark.
But back to back wins in the Euro 2020 qualifiers has, to a point, put the smile back on his face.
"It's always enjoyable when you win and we haven't won a lot lately, especially at home to get the win was enjoyable. We got after Georgia on the press which gave us more time to play in their half, it was excellent. I am looking forward to the games in the summer now," added Brady.
"It's a great start, that's what we needed as well. After the last year, it's been difficult, and I know that's for the fans as well as ourselves.
"So to start it off with two wins and have a bit of momentum going into the summer is brilliant."
Since he made his debut under Giovanni Trapattoni, Brady had cornered the market in terms of set pieces with Ireland but he seems to have been overtaken by Conor Hourihane. So was it a case on Tuesday night of the Corkman elbowing Brady away from the free kick which he scored from?
"No, if you watch him in club football, he's got an unbelievable left foot as well. So we just worked it out amongst ourselves, he said he fancied it so I said, 'right no problem'. It was a great strike, that's probably me off them for a while now," he joked.
Brady was also full of praise for the player who won man of the match, David McGoldrick.
"Didzy is a fantastic player. We haven't got to see it as much over the last few years," said Brady.
"If you watch him at club football, he's a good player, he's clever and if you see him he's strong, you see that in the Georgia game with his hold-up play, it was brilliant.
"Hopefully there is many more to come from him like that in a green jersey because it was a well deserved man of the match."