Foley: I have been betrayed by Trapattoni

Ireland defender bitter over late exclusion but Kelly claims it can bring squad together

Click to follow
The Independent Football

The Republic of Ireland defender Stephen Kelly is hoping Kevin Foley's Euro 2012 disappointment can help galvanise his team-mates for the tournament.

Foley, the Wolves full-back, was told on Tuesday that he will not be going to Poland and Ukraine following the manager Giovanni Trapattoni's 11th-hour decision to elevate Hull City's Paul McShane from his stand-by list because of his ability to also cover the centre-half position.

That proved a devastating blow for Foley, who had been named in the initial 23, and although he played in the second half of Tuesday night's 5-0 friendly victory over a Tuscan Select XI in Pistoia, he later indicated that he would not accept Trapattoni's offer to remain with the squad as they finalise their preparations for the European Championship.

Foley said: "It is hard to take, you know. I sort of feel betrayed. I don't want to go into too much detail. I just feel betrayed."

Kelly admitted that the 27-year-old's disappointment had been shared by his colleagues, but hopes it could help to mould them into an even tighter group. The Fulham defender said: "It's very hard to put into words. It's obviously heart-breaking for Kevin to be involved this far up and then get that news.

"The manager has always had 26, 27 players in the squad and there have always been whispers that the manager would have to cut it down at some point. For Kevin to have been in the initial 23 and be out of it now, it's extremely disappointing. But all we can do is offer him our condolences and wish him the best.

"I am sure we will all be thinking about him when we are away, and it might galvanise us together as a team as well."

McShane is attempting to deal with starkly mixed feelings – joy at his own inclusion, but sorrow for the man who had to miss out to accommodate him. The 26-year-old had not expected the scenario which unfolded when he was asked to join up amid a defensive injury crisis before last Saturday's friendly against Bosnia-Herzegovina in Dublin.

McShane said: "I just turned up to the squad I didn't expect anything. I just turned up because I was called upon and I wanted to come and train with the lads. I started against Bosnia and now have been put in the 23. I never really expected it, but I was sort of always preparing mentally just in case I was called upon. I am happy to be there, but at the same time, I am also disappointed for Kevin."