Former Ireland international Wes Hoolahan has opened up on his career with the Boys in Green outlining that despite wishing he had played more, he never felt as though he was overlooked as a player.
Hoolahan, who was considered by many to be Ireland’s most creative and technically gifted player during his international career only managed 43 caps in nine years, despite his outstanding ability.
Speaking to Irish Football Fan TV, Hoolahan explained that he was still very proud to have won as many caps as he did – 35 of those coming under Martin O’Neill and only eight of them under Giovani Trapattoni – despite many feeling he should have won more.
“When you’re playing [international football], you just want to wear the badge and walk out onto the pitch. It’s a great occasion and I really enjoyed it,” Hoolahan said.
“Obviously I’d love to have played more times for my country but I never thought I was overlooked. Martin [O’Neill] capped me the most times and I had a really successful spell under him.
“I didn’t feel I was overlooked. I would have loved to play more games, but to play as many times as I did for my country, I’m very proud of that.”
The former Belvedere schoolboy retired from international football in February and is currently a part of a West Brom team that is flying high at the top of the Championship.
Despite Ireland being in desperate need of some creativity, as their recent struggles in front of goal appear to suggest, Hoolahan was quick to rule out a return to the Irish setup under Mick McCarthy.
“Hopefully we can get to the Euros,” said Hoolahan. “Obviously there’ll be two games at home so it would be great for the country to be there. It would kind of give a lift after what’s happened in the last year.
“It’s good now that Mick has taken over. Hopefully he can breed young players coming through and get them ready. I’m sure he’ll do a great job.”
Mick McCarthy and Ireland begin their Euro 2020 qualifying campaign against Gibraltar and Georgia in March.