– By James Clancy
Mick McCarthy was in good spirits at tonight’s post match press conference following the Republic of Ireland 3-1 friendly win over New Zealand, but the Ireland manager is well aware that Denmark on Monday night will be a radically different proposition.
Asked to summarize Ireland’s performance tonight, McCarthy said: “I could see their goal coming. We had a lot of the ball in the first half but we didn’t do anything with it.
“In the second-half we dominated and could have scored more.”
On Troy Parrott:
“Troy did okay. He didn’t set the world alight but I was very pleased with him. He ran the channels well.
“He can handle himself. He tracked back, tackled their centre-half hard after being on the receiving end of some rough stuff. It was a welcome to mens’ football and he didn’t let anyone bully him.
“He appears to be someone very confident in his ability. He trains that way. He sung last night (at his initiation into the team). He’s a good singer – and he’s a good singer too! He can play football and he’s good looking, where did it all go wrong for him?!”
On Seáni Maguire and others who did well tonight:
“Seani Maguire played well. Brownie (Alan Browne) and Josh Cullen played well.
“Kevin Long played well, he looks like he’s playing every week for his club. Whatever he’s doing, fair play to him.”
On Robbie Brady:
“He did some good things, some not so good things. He needed a game. The 90 minutes will benefit him.”
The manager was non-committal on whether the fact that Brady played the full 90 minutes tonight means that he won’t play on Monday night against Denmark.
On Derrick Williams:
“I thought Derrick was excellent. He’s a left-sided centre-back and he’s done very well. I’ve been very impressed with Derrick. It was a great header for his goal tonight. I took him off because his calf tied up.”
On Carl Robinson:
“I think his best slot is on the left. It’s unfortunate for him that we have lots whose best slots is on the left.”
On debutant Lee O’Connor:
“That’s as good a cross as we’ve put in and Robbo was delighted he put that one across. Lee didn’t do much wrong overall.”
On Jack Byrne:
“Jack did fine. With the ball, using the ball. Off the ball, he’s improved no end. We’ve been showing him bits. Yeah, I was pleased with Jack.”
Mick McCarthy’s take from tonight:
“We’ve had four full debuts tonight. Three players have scored their first international goal. Will it make any difference to what happens next Monday night? I don’t know, but any positive going into Monday night is a good thing. Denmark is a completely different fixture, they’ve lost one of their last 31 matches, this was New Zealand’s first match in 18 months.”