As Ireland wait to see if Rob Elliot and others are available for their Euros play-off double header, Roy Keane says it is ‘ironic’ how players are conveniently injured for 10-14 days when internationals come around.

Martin O’Neill’s assistant says that ‘of course’ players should stay with their clubs if they are really injured but clearly doubts this is the case with Elliot and/or others.

Rob Elliot will never have another/better chance of representing his country at a finals, than he does with France 2016.

If he doesn’t make himself available for these two games against Bosnia-Herzegovina then you would find it hard to see that Ireland would then consider him if they did get through.

The Ireland management haven’t mentioned it as yet but they do have the option of then asking the authorities to ban Elliot for Newcastle’s next match, if they believe he could/should have been available for the internationals.

Of course these kind of conversations could be going on privately as we speak…

Ireland play away on Friday (13 November) and then at home in Dublin on Monday (16 November).

Roy Keane:

“With the injuries we have had over the last two or three weeks, I kind of ruled the boys out anyway…if they become available in the next day or two, particularly for the second leg, it will be a fantastic bonus .

 “You ask any of the players who worked under me, I never had a problem with players going away for internationals, never.

“I never ruled them out for 10-14 days every time there was an international match.

“If players were fit, they would go away. But if players aren’t fit, you have got to respect the clubs.

“If the players aren’t fit, then of course they stay at their clubs but it is ironic that they all seem to get ruled out for 10-14 days.”