Former Republic of Ireland youth international Sean Scannell seems set to cross the border and commit his future to Northern Ireland.
The Sunday Times have reported that Northern Ireland boss Michael O’Neill has made moves to recruit the Huddersfield Town winger to the Green and White Army ahead of the UEFA Nations League and European Championship 2020 qualifiers.
Michael O’Neill, who recently signed a new four-year deal with the national side, has been on the lookout for fresh talent for his squad having fallen just short of reaching the 2018 World Cup. With many of the current crop the wrong side of 30 and the Northern Irish talent pool a particularly small one, the former Shamrock Rovers boss has had to cast the net wider in his search for new internationals.
Scannell’s agent has said, however, that while there have been discussions regarding his client, nothing has been confirmed as yet:
“There is genuine interest there but nothing has been confirmed as yet about Sean playing for Northern Ireland. I’m sure that Sean will look forward to having a conversation (with Michael O’Neill) when the time is right.”
Scannell rose through the ranks of Irish international football at the beginning of his career, lining out for the Boys in Green right up to U21 level (with his final cap coming in 2012). THe closest that he has come to senior involvement was a call-up to Giovanni Trapattoni’s very first 40-man Ireland squad in 2008, but was subsequently cut when the panel was reduced to 26 and hasn’t really part of the international conversation in the decade since.
With Martin O’Neill seemingly uninterested in calling the 27-year-old up to the Republic of Ireland squad and, Northern Ireland appears to be the England-born midfielder’s best bet of playing international football.