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Brady's keen on McCarthy

LIAM Brady believes Robbie Keane could be jettisoned to make room for James McCarthy in Giovanni Trapattoni's future plans for Ireland.

Brady claims Ireland are more than capable of swapping their rigid 4-4-2 formation for a more fluid 4-3-3 and stated that he would speak to the 73-year-old Italian over misgivings he has with the direction the Irish team is taking.

"No, I wouldn't agree that we cannot play 4-3-3. I would say the players are there," said Brady. "Looking at the squad he's picked to go to Serbia, it looks like it's going to be a minor transition now.

"If he's going to play James McCarthy, it would suit him more in a three (man central midfield). I hope he does it. But if you're going to go to that formation, it would probably mean Robbie wouldn't be in it.

"I don't think Giovanni would be frightened of that at all. I think what he genuinely believes is that the other formation is better for getting us results."

Brady added: "I haven't spoken to him since the Euros but I'm sure I'll speak to him in August when it's all back up and running again.

"I would be quite open with him and tell him I disagree with him. But he's been there, done that and got the T-shirt. I haven't.

"He was in a very difficult position. Over four years, his players delivered really well. He felt he owed it to them to keep them together.

"In my opinion, now is the time to look at other things. I would argue with him that we could play a different formation."

Brady has been involved in cultivating the cream of football talent at Arsenal's youth academy over the past number of years but is frustrated at the lack of talents coming through the underage ranks of late.

While he feels Manchester United's Robbie Brady and Arsenal prodigy Conor Henderson could make it, Ireland don't have the likes of a Duff or a Keane coming through.

"I don't think there's any Irish players around of the same calibre as Damien Duff and Robbie Keane had as youngsters," he added.

"I think we have a few possibles, but they're not probables. You knew that Damien, Robbie, Shay (Given) and Richard (Dunne) were going to be big players for Ireland.

"I don't think there's anyone like that at the moment. I'd put Brady in the possible category alongside Henderson.

"We're at a huge disadvantage anyway -- not all our youngsters play soccer. There's a huge draw to Gaelic games and quite a big draw to rugby.

"Yet, Croatia is an example of a nation that's not particularly big who have skilful players coming through. I think we should do what the French have done and have a centre for the talented kids, from maybe the ages of 12 to 16."