Sunday 20 January 2019

O'Shea: I made right call

Republic of Ireland's John O'Shea
Republic of Ireland's John O'Shea

John O'Shea says he's pleased with his decision to stick with international football instead of retiring last summer.

But at club level, the Sunderland defender knows that his side are running out of games in their bid to stay in the Premier League this season.

The 35-year-old resumed his place in the Ireland side for last week's 0-0 draw with Wales and while he's now playing a bit-part role, he's convinced he made the right call to stick around even though retirement, post Euro 2016, crossed his mind.

"I did consider it," O'Shea told Newstalk. "I had been picked for 14-15 years and all of a sudden you're not a first-choice player. But it's a special group [of players], we had kicked on, started the group well and you think things are going well.

"I felt I could still give something and help out, in the back of my mind there was the annoying thing of never being to a World Cup so all those factors played a part."

O'Shea hopes to be fit for his club's weekend league game, having needed stitches after his clash with Gareth Bale, but he knows how tough the relegation battle will be.

"The mood is tense, but surprisingly ok, the manager is experienced enough to have that balance of enjoyable training but the seriousness of the situation we are in," he says.

"We have to take that and turn it into wins, take the attitude in training and replicate that on match day, the games are counting down now, 10 games to go, Swansea are the team we have to catch."

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