Monday, June 25, 2018

Who should be the next Republic of Ireland boss?

David Nugent in Editorial, World Cup 12 Sep 2013

Former-Sunderland boss Martin O'Neill is the favourite for the Republic of Ireland position

Former-Sunderland boss Martin O’Neill is the favourite for the Republic of Ireland position

Republic of Ireland are now looking for a new boss, after veteran Italian Giovanni Trapattoni left his position on Wednesday by mutual consent.

The Italian’s position was questioned after Ireland lost 1-0 in Austria in crucial World Cup qualifier, which meant that their qualification hopes were all but ended.

Speculation about Trapattoni’s future did not last long though, as the FAI moved quickly to discuss the Italians future.

It seems that it was the FAI that decided that Trapattoni would leave the job, rather than the Italian, despite the claims Trapattoni left by mutual consent.


According to FAI chief executive John Delaney there is at least five bosses in the frame for the job. He told Newstalk: “I think names like Mick, Brian McDermott, Chris Hughton, Roy Keane all come into the pot – Martin O’Neill, of course.

“I wouldn’t want to comment on any individual chances. Mick has done a very good job for Ireland and in England as well. We will look at the job description over the next week.”


The Republic of Ireland will have some very decent options for Trapattoni’s replacement. Here is a rundown of the five favourites for the job:

Martin O’Neill

O’Neill is currently unemployed after an ill-fated spell at Sunderland ended in dismissal. Despite that perceived failure in the north east the former-Villa boss is still highly-regarded by fans and within coaching circles.

O’Neill is the current favourite for the job with the bookmakers and it seems he is also a favourite with the majority of Republic fans. During his time as Celtic and Villa boss he was lauded for his man-management and motivational skills. However, those skills were questioned by fans of Sunderland.

Mick McCarthy

The former-Republic boss is currently in charge of Championship Ipswich. The Yorkshire-born former Ireland centre-back enjoyed a previous spell in charge of the national team and seems to be amongst one of the favourites to reprise his role as national team boss.

After guiding Ireland to the 2002 World Cup he had spells at Sunderland and Wolves where he experienced his best spell of his club career, before being sacked in 20012 with the his team struggling in the top –flight.

His no-nonsense approach to life and football management has garnered him a host of admirers and I do not think he would be an unpopular choice of replacement for Trapattoni.

Chris Hughton

Just like McCarthy, played for the Republic of Ireland and was a teammate of the former-Wolves boss for the Republic. Hughton has built himself a very good reputation as a boss, after several years spent as a coach.

Hughton’s first managerial role came at Newcastle in 2008, where he did a very admirable job, before rather unlucky losing his job. Hughton led the Magpies to promotion to the Premier League, only to lose his job while the Magpies were midtable in the top-flight.

Hughton then did a superb job at Birmingham, who was in the midst of a financial crisis. Hughton lead the club to the play-offs, despite losing a whole host of players that summer. Hughton’s reward for his good work was a move back to the Premier League with Norwich in 2011.

Hughton has continued his good work in Norfolk by keeping the Canaries competitive in the top-flight. The former-Tottenham is very honest and well liked within the football community.

Roy Keane

One of the most outstanding players to have ever come out of Ireland, Keane is considered a hero by some Irish fans. However, his row with some of Mick McCarthy’s coaching staff and McCarthy himself at the 2002 World Cup could work against him. Keane decided to head home after a heated debate with the Ireland boss.

Keane’s managerial record does not exactly make a great case for him to get the job either. At both Sunderland and Ipswich he failed to achieve the clubs objectives. His hard style of management was not appreciated by the Sunderland players and they believed to have celebrated his departure.

Brian McDermott

Brian McDermott is currently in charge of Championship Leeds. McDermott previously guided Reading to promotion to the Premier League, but was sacked in March with his club set for a return to the second tier.

McDermott has been praised for his man-management and his ability to get the best out of his players, even when they have limited ability.


There is no doubt in my mind that the Republic of Ireland were in need of a fresh start, after a poor qualification campaign, plus a woeful Euro 2012. Maybe this decision has come a year and a bit too late.

Maybe Trapattoni should have left after the poor campaign at Euro 2012. However, now there is a chance for someone to bring fresh ideas to the Ireland team. I do not subscribe to the idea that there is no talent in the country.

There are talented players available to Ireland and if they are utilised correctly then I do believe that the Republic of Ireland can achieve better results. The next Republic of Ireland boss may just prove my theory.

Who will be the next Republic of Ireland boss?


David Nugent

David is a freelance football writer with nearly a decade of experience writing about the beautiful game. The experienced writer has written for over a dozen websites and also an international soccer magazine offline.
Arguably his best work has come as an editorial writer for Soccernews, sharing his good, bad and ugly opinions on the world’s favourite sport. During David’s writing career he has written editorials, betting previews, match previews, banter, news and opinion pieces.



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R M Skillen

He would be a great choice. Good organiser and even better motivator.

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