Monday morning blues as Trap tries to figure out injury crisis

8 Oct

Published by TheScore.ie, 8 October 2012

IN HIS FOUR years as Republic of Ireland manager Giovanni Trapattoni has certainly had easier starts to an international break.

A nightmare weekend of Premier League injuries saw the Italian arrive in Malahide on Monday morning for the first day of training armed with a growing list of knocks, niggles and doubts.

By the afternoon it had become clear that James McClean would remain in Sunderland for treatment on a hip flexor strain which rules him out of Friday night’s World Cup qualifier against Germany, while Trapattoni indicated that hamstring victims Sean St Ledger and Glenn Whelan will need a minor miracle if they are to be ready for the trip to the Faroe Islands four days later.

Aston Villa’s Ciaran Clark was called up to the squad this afternoon to alleviate the defensive shortage and captain Robbie Keane and Aiden McGeady should arrive in time for Tuesday’s session.

With Richard Dunne, Kevin Doyle and Darron Gibson already ruled out, there was a sense that the depleted numbers might force Trapattoni to think on his feet and experiment against the Germans.

While he proved himself open to the the suggestion, trying out a three-man central midfield of Keith Andrews, James McCarthy and Keith Fahey behind a lone striker in training, he said that there won’t necessarily be a need for a change in his tried and trusted methods.

“We can replace like for like,” Trapattoni said.

Maybe against Germany we need no change, only [in the] situation. Germany is a strong team. We know their quality, we know their potential. They are first in the table.

He added:  ”I know Germany, I know this team. Three days a week, two weeks — DVD, DVD, DVD, DVD. I know every player of the opponent. Then we need to have the opportunity.”

Asked about the significance of his 4-5-1 training exercise, Trapattoni explained: “Maybe in three days I have to think again. It’s one option.”

While everything else remained shrouded in uncertainty, one thing was for sure. The Italian sees the wins against Kazakhstan and Oman last month as an opportunity to draw a line under the disappointment of Euro 2012 and start afresh.

“I believe that the beginning of the new qualification campaign with the match against Kazakhstan and the friendly against Oman proved that we have overcome the disappointment of the Euros.

“I never wish to have again disappointment, disappointment, disappointment. Disappointment is finished now.”

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