Martin O’Neill will make his return to football after not being involved with the sport since he was sacked as the Sunderland manager earlier this year in March. The Irishman is not returning as a club manager, but instead is embarking on his first journey as an international manager for the Republic of Ireland. After failing to qualify for next years’ FIFA World Cup, The Republic of Ireland got rid of their former manager, Giovanni Trapattoni, in favour of a more local footballing idol, Martin O’Neill.
Considering this is his first managerial role on international level, Martin O’Neill decided to recruit some help in the form of former Manchester United forward and Ireland international, Roy Keane. O’Neill is planned to be the main manager for the Irish squad and Keane will be his assistant with the both of the men being contracted on a two year deal. However, both men have previously had a managerial career and extremely successful footballing careers as players, so they have the experience to turn this Ireland squad into a top class team.
Martin O’Neill’s first job as a manager was for Wycombe Wanderers where he got off to a flying start gaining back to back promotion for the lower league side in 1993 and 1994. He then moved to Norwich where he stayed for 6 months before he quit and moved to Leicester City. This was a very successful time for the Irishman, winning the League Cup in 1997 and 2000 before he moved to Celtic and won the domestic treble in his first season in charge. He was then the Aston Villa manager, guiding them to the League Cup final in 2010, and moved to Sunderland in 2012.
Roy Keane has had a much smaller managerial career as he was fired as the Ipswich manager in 2011 after 20 months in charge. Keane is a more controversial figure for his country after quitting as an international player before the 2002 World Cup following a dispute with the then manager Mick McCarthy. Keane was awarded 67 international caps and was captain of his country whilst Martin O’Neill gained 64 international caps. O’Neill described his and Keane’s partnership, “I think I’m the bad cop and he’s the bad, bad cop.”
Author Daniel Foster.
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