A week in the sun has clearly done wonders for Mick McCarthy with the Irish boss in rare form on Wednesday as he addressed the media following his side’s training camp in Portugal.
McCarthy and Ireland prepared for the upcoming Euro 2020 qualifiers against Denmark and Gibraltar with a training camp in the Algarve and returned back to Dublin earlier this week.
The doubleheader represents a massive chance for the Boys in Green to get a serious foothold in the group having started with two victories over Gibraltar and Georgia, with McCarthy beginning his second reign in perfect fashion.
One player who McCarthy had scouted but will almost certainly not be involved during his reign is Southampton forward Nathan Redmond.
The 25-year old has Irish connections through his mother and is eligible to play for Ireland having only played a friendly for England, but he was recently called up to their squad for the UEFA Nations League finals by manager Gareth Southgate.
When quizzed as to whether or not his English call-up puts an end to any slim hope of Redmond making the switch to Ireland, McCarthy told a brilliant story, involving Irish kitman Dick Redmond, outlining how he found out about the Southampton man’s call-up.
“Well I got a text message from Robbie (Keane) I was actually playing golf at the time and it said ‘that’s Redmond gone’ and I messaged back ‘Dick?’ knowing full well who he meant of course.
“He then said ‘No Nathan, he’s been picked for England’ I said ‘thank fuck it’s not Dick.’ He sent me back a load of laughing faces, excuse my language but I can’t put it any other way because that’s what he said.
“Dick is delighted. He’s now even more of a legendary kitman than he was before.”
The chance of Redmond ever representing Ireland was a slim one from the off but the 25-year old didn’t end up making the final squad meaning that technically he can still make the switch if he wishes.
McCarthy was asked as to whether or not he feels England calling up Redmond was a kneejerk response to Ireland’s interest in the forward, but he played down the idea and outlined that he feels, England is where Redmond wants to play his international football.
“Well if he did they’ve sent him home. I’m not being funny but they have. They’ve told him he’s not in the squad so no I don’t think so.
“I think Nathan Redmond wants to play for England, he’s played for England in the past and I think he wants to play for them. He was hoping to get the call-up.
“He’s got the cheap date in the background, me, I’ve said that before that’s just the way it is. There’s another option but I do believe the real option is that he wants to play for England who he has played for at U21 level.
“Good luck to him if he wants to play for England, he got called up. I’ve no idea if that’s the case but if it was, if that was their modus operandi then they would’ve stuck him on in one of the games and not sent him home. “