| 11.5°C Dublin

The kids are all right

MARTIN O’Neill has given his players a vote of confidence - and the freedom to breathe during this lengthy four-match summer schedule.

Previous Ireland managers had to deal with a range of extra-curricular and strictly forbidden behaviour but O’Neill believes his bunch are smart and mature enough to be trusted.

“The spirit, the attitude of the players has been terrific. Every manager seems to say that but it’s absolutely true,” said ONeill.

“You give them a little bit of leeway. They are professional players.

“Some of them have families living not too far from here. We’ve done the training, it’s the end of the season and I think they enjoy a little bit of freedom that they get.

“And none of them at this minute - famous last words these will be, of course - but none of them have abused it,” laughed O’Neill.