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Stephen Kenny defends his position as Ireland boss

Adam Idah Jason Knight

“That kind of near-sightedness doesn’t create anything.”

Stephen Kenny has staunchly defended his position as manager of Ireland’s football team.

He said that he has made the decision to try ensure that Ireland is in a good position for the Euros in Germany in 2024, but that he has also tried to win every game in this campaign as well.

Stephen Kenny

After a cruel loss to Portugal and a disappointing draw with Azerbaijan in the past seven days, pressure has undeniably been mounting on Kenny, but he insists he is the right man to lead this team forward.

Stephen Kenny defends his position as Ireland manager

He said: “If you take the four matches that people are talking about in the campaign. In the games against Serbia and Portugal away, they are probably two of our best performances away from home in the last decade, without question.

“We lost 3-2 and 2-1. Against Luxembourg, we didn’t play well, it was a poor performance, but we still didn’t deserve to lose the game based on chances. The other night, we dominated, and we should have won well.”

He also made the point that Ireland have not qualified for a World Cup since 2002, and asked if that was the expectation of the fans.

Stephen Kenny

Stephen Kenny “building something”

He continued: “I think there’s real progress overall, to be honest. That’s the way I see it. That’s the way my staff see it. There’s a lot of people behind it.

“There’s a lot of people who aren’t, who just see us in a results business. ‘That’s not your job to develop the game here, that’s not your job. Win the next match, that’s your job’.

“That kind of near-sightedness doesn’t create anything. You might beat teams you shouldn’t beat, but you’ll never beat the teams you can strive to beat.

“You’re trying to build something that can actually be tangible over a period of time, and that can be successful. That’s the way I see it.”

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