Belfast Telegraph

Friday 26 December 2014

McClean fumes on Twitter

James McClean took to Twitter to voice his anger about not playing
James McClean took to Twitter to voice his anger about not playing

James McClean vented his frustration after Ireland manager Giovanni Trapattoni left him on the bench to watch his team-mates struggle to a 2-1 win over Kazakhstan on Friday night.

Trapattoni, who has come under pressure this summer after the country's dismal showing at Euro 2012, saw his Ireland side put on arguably the worst performance of his four-and-a-half year tenure.

Kazakhstan, ranked 142nd in the world, outplayed Ireland in Astana and took the lead nine minutes before half-time through Kairat Nurdauletov. They could have scored at least two more goals before they collapsed in a frenetic final two minutes which saw the visitors snatch victory thanks to goals from Robbie Keane and Kevin Doyle.

Trapattoni brought Doyle and Shane Long off the bench but did not call upon McClean, who has been outstanding for Sunderland this term - a move that has clearly enraged the 23-year-old.

Tweeting from his official account @JMcC_23, the winger said: "Delighted as a fan we got the the win.. Personal level #fuming #f*****joke #embarrassing." The tweet was later deleted.

Trapattoni is aware of McClean's rant and could fine the former Derry City man for his actions, or even kick the player out of Ireland's squad for their friendly against Oman at Craven Cottage on Tuesday - a game in which he probably would have started.

Trapattoni has been at pains to stress all week that the squad is united and determined to embark upon a new successful era following the retirements of Damien Duff and Shay Given. Despite the rhetoric, however, the Italian's team were woefully below par, with Kazakhstan the better side for the majority of the match.

Afterwards, a downbeat Trapattoni admitted his side were fortunate to start their Group C campaign with a victory. He said: "I think it's honest to say that we have been a little bit lucky in this game. I think we had a psychological block after we conceded because usually we have a good reaction when that happens but we didn't today."

His opposite number Miroslav Beranek agreed. "Football showed its brutal face to us tonight," the Kazakhstan coach said. "We played very well so it's really hard to speak about these goals we conceded."

Kevin Doyle said: "It was a smash and grab job. We got out of jail. It's good to start the campaign with a win but with minutes to go, it looked like being a disaster."

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