On Thursday, Mick McCarthy named 30-year old Newport County striker Padraig Amond in his first Irish squad for the games against Gibraltar and Georgia.
Playing in League Two, Amond impressed many following his tremendous goalscoring run in the FA Cup which saw him score in every round as the Welsh club reached the competition’s fifth round.
But who exactly is Padraig Amond? Here is everything you need to know about Ireland’s newest call-up.
Date of birth:
January 15th 1988.
Where Is He From?
Amond was born in Co. Carlow and joined Dublin club Shamrock Rovers at the age of 10.
The 30-year old signed his first pro contract at Rovers in 2006 and also played minor hurling and football for Carlow before eventually stopping to solely focus on his League of Ireland career.
What Position Does He Play?
The Carlow native can play in a number of position across the frontline. For Newport this season he has mainly lined up as a striker in a two up top, a position he has grabbed 15 assists and seven assists from according to Transfermarkt.com.
Amond can also occupy either wing in a front three, which he has done on a handful of occasions this campaign, and is also able to play just off the front as a second striker.
Style of Play?
As previously mentioned, Amond can play a handful of different positions in the forward line, which is helped in no small part by the pace he possesses.
Amond has made eight goals for his teammates in the league this season thanks to his unselfish play, but the Carlow native is also deadly in and around the penalty area himself.
In a similar style to James Collins, he has a happy knack of being in the right place at the right time in the box and knows how to finish when given the opportunity.
The 30-year old isn’t the biggest striker, but he is intelligent and his movement and anticipation has lead to him scoring his fair share of headers.
How Has He Performed In For Newport This Season?
Amond has been outstanding for his club Newport this campaign.
In the league, the 30-year old has scored 13 goals and laid on eight assists for his teammates as the Welsh club sit in the top half of League Two.
It has been his exploits in the FA Cup however that grabbed the attention of most. Amond scored five goals in this season’s competition, netting in every round against the likes of Middlesbrough, Leicester and most notably Manchester City as Newport reached the fifth round.
How Has He Performed At International Level?
The striker had never before been called up to the senior Irish squad but has represented his country at underage level.
Amond played for the Boys in Green at U21 level, earning his first cap in August of 2008 against Austria and his last of four in October of that same year against Lithuania.
Why Has He Not Been Called Up To The Senior Squad Before?
Amond is arguably having the best season of his career at 30-years of age with Newport this year, and the widespread attention he received for his FA Cup heroics will have certainly had a massive influence on his first ever international call-up.
In truth, Amond had never caught the eye as much as he did this season. Last year, he scored a respectable fifteen goals for Newport while his previous best tally from five other seasons in League Two had been 14 with Hartlepool in the 2016/2017 campaign.
He did have an outstanding season with Grimsby Town in the National League in 2015/2016 scoring 37 goals in all competitions but the level would have massively worked against him.
The 30-year old also had a bizarre spell in Portugal, moving to Pacos De Ferriera after an impressive goalscoring season with Sligo Rovers.
Amond featured off the bench on 17 occasions but failed to register a league start in Portugal before moving to League Two Accrington Stanley.