Tuesday 12 December 2017

Treacy tests Trap resolve

'Tired' Keith excludes himself from squad

PRESTON winger Keith Treacy has put his international future in jeopardy by pulling out of the squad for the upcoming Euro 2012 qualifiers against Russia and Slovakia.

The Dubliner is in good form with Darren Ferguson's Championship side, and he scored his fifth goal of the season in Saturday's 1-1 draw with Reading.

He was named in the original 26-man squad for the double header, though there was confusion over what happened next. The FAI stated on Friday that Treacy had been omitted from the final 22-man panel and was on standby.

But Treacy has risked the ire of Giovanni Trapattoni by stating that he has no intention of reporting for duty as he needs a rest.

"Someone said I'm in the squad, others said I'm on standby but, whatever, I am not going," said the former Blackburn Rovers man.


"I don't think Trap was too happy when I phoned and told him that I am tired. He was surprised because we have only played nine games but I've been struggling and need the break.

"The gaffer (Ferguson) has kept faith in me and tells me to grin and bear it. It's a tough-love attitude but I'm benefiting from it.

"I need to make sure I am fit and playing well for Preston and then hopefully I will get the chance to play for my country again.

"The international break has come at the right time because we have a few others taking painkillers to get through games. I am going to put my feet up and relax, I might go back to Dublin to see the family," added Treacy.

Trapattoni is a fan of Treacy and handed him his debut in a friendly against Argentina in August, but the Italian coach does not appreciate it when players fail to report for inter-national duty. Lee Carsley, Andy Reid, Steven Reid and -- more recently -- James McCarthy and Marc Wilson have all suffered a spell in exile after they did not turn up for Ireland duty.

One man who will be in Dublin, but not in the Ireland squad, is Norwich City man Wes Hoolahan.

The ex-Shelbourne man is in superb form for the Canaries, having scored three goals in the past two games to help push Norwich up to third place in the Championship table, and Hoolahan, who was capped once at senior level by Trapattoni in 2008, is still dreaming of another Ireland call-up.

"I haven't played for Ireland for a while but I managed to get one cap and I'd obviously still like to get more," said Hoolahan after he scored in Saturday's win away to Bristol City.

"I'll probably nip back to Dublin to watch the Russia game next week as my family live close to the ground.

"And I'll be doing all I can with Norwich to impress Mr Trapattoni -- and hope that he notices me."

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