Robbie Brady ‘devastated’ to be out of Wales clash
Ireland’s senior player of the year one of a number of absentees for key qualifier
Robbie Brady was named Ireland’s senior international player of the year. Photograph: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile
Robbie Brady says that the reality of being ruled out of Ireland’s World Cup qualifier against Wales is only hitting him now.
The 25 year-old Dubliner is suspended for the game after picking up his second yellow card of the campaign for kicking the ball away during the win over Austria and says he must settle now for helping his team mates prepare.
“I’m devastated I’m going to be missing the game,” he says, “especially in the last few weeks with all the build up as it’s all everyone is talking about. I’m not a good watcher of games as it is. With this one, it will be a hard one for me to take on Friday night. It’s not about me on Friday night, it’s about the lads, I’ll be in training with them and trying to get them ready.
“I love coming in here, though. Seamus said there was a massive gap since we last met up, but it’s such a tight knit group, it’s amazing to come back to such a fantastic set-up. Any opportunity to get in with this group, I’ll take it with both hands. If that means just training this week to get ready for Friday’s game with a view to playing next Tuesday, I’m happy with that.”
The Dubliner is just one of a number of players that will miss the game against Wales with manager Martin O’Neill facing particular problems in both midfield and central defence.
“There’s a few niggles here and there which I’m sure you know about but no, it’s nothing we can’t cope with as we’ve a big squad and some good players,” said Brady. “Everyone is champing at the bit ready to play and we’ll have a good week’s preparation. Like I said, we’ll put out our strongest team possible and hopefully get a good result.”
Brady won the Senior and Young International prizes at Sunday night’s Three/FAI annual awards, two more than he picked up 12 months ago and he said he was especially happy to take home the main prize of the night.
“I think the main one for me was senior player because so many great players have won it,” he said. “For me to get my hands on that award, like I said, no one can take it away me now that I have it. That was an important one for me. The ‘young player’, I’m 25-years of age now, I picked that one up last year so the senior one meant more for me this time around. Like I said, it’s an honour to pick up the three.”
Revised Ireland squad: Randolph, Westwood, Doyle; Coleman, Christie, Keogh, Pearce, O’Shea, Boyle, Egan, Ward; McGeady, Whelan, McCarthy, Hendrick, Brady, Hourihane, Meyler, O’Kane, Hoolahan, McClean, Hayes, Horgan, O’Dowda; Walters, Long, Murphy, Doyle.
Award winners: Senior Men: Robbie Brady (Burnley); Young Player: Robbie Brady (Burnley); Senior Women: Karen Duggan (UCD Waves); International Goal: Robbie Brady v Italy (UEFA EURO 2016); Under 21 Player: Callum O’Dowda (Bristol City); Under 19 Men: George Poynton (Bohemians); Women: Roma McLaughlin (Shelbourne); Under 17 Men: Declan Rice (West Ham); Women: Saoirse Noonan (Cork City); Under 16 Men: Jordan Doherty (Sheffield United); Women: Tyler Toland (Maiden City); Under 15: Callum Thompson (St Joseph’s Boys); Junior: Stephen Kelly (Newmarket Celtic); Intermediate: Mark Horgan (Avondale United); School’s: Conor McCarthy (Scoil Mhuire, Blarney); Colleges/Universities: Paul Rooney (Maynooth); Football For All: Paul McMahon (Football For All, Under-19 squad); SSE Airtricity League: Daryl Horgan; Hall of Fame: Robbie Keane.