LIVE: Thierry Henry handball - 10 years on

On air now

LIVE: Thierry Henry handball - 10 years on

04:00 PM-05:00 PM

'Realistically, they have to p...

Soccer

'Realistically, they have to perform at club level' | Kelly on u21s young guns

Eoin Harte
Eoin Harte

05:33 19 Oct 2019


Share this article


Former Ireland international Stephen Kelly was on The Football Show and shared some concerns about how good the u21s team really are.

The u21s Republic of Ireland team have performed very well under the tutelage of Stephen Kenny, who is due to take over as the manager of the senior team next year.

However, while Kelly is impressed by what he has seen from the underage side he thinks it would be a mistake to bring them into the senior side without performing in senior club football first.

“When people talk about Stephen Kenny, for me, I think everyone’s looking forward to it and thinking it’s going to be great and saying ‘Let’s bring all the u21s up.’

“But realistically, those u21 players are going to have to perform at the level of club level if they want to get a senior international cap.

“If they were doing that now at their club they’d be like Aaron Connolly and they’d be in the first team. It’s great that we’re having this style of football and have progressed them. And that’s fantastic.

“But you can’t automatically, just because you played u21s with Stephen Kenny, come into the senior team, Kelly said.

Aaron Connolly only got a call-up to the Irish senior team after a starring cameo for Brighton against Tottenham where he scored two goals.

Kelly feels that this should be the norm when bringing young players into the side.

“Unless at club level you’re performing to a level or high enough standard that would warrant you to get a senior cap. You have to do it at club.

“So if these players are doing it at u21s but then don’t step up or don’t progress they’re not going to step up into the senior team.

“I can’t see that. I can’t just see him bringing people in if they’ve done well for the underage.

“It’s a huge step up. If you can’t show it at senior level at club football I’m not sure you can really go and trust him in international football,” Kelly commented.

Subscribe to Off The Ball's YouTube channel for more videos, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for the latest sporting news and content.


Share this article


Read more about

FAI Ireland U21s Stephen Kelly Stephen Kenny

Live: Title

Description

Added to queue
Removed from queue

On Air

Share

Share

Next up in queue

Title
Description
Duration

There are currently no podcasts in the queue

Go to podcasts

On Air

LIVE: Thierry Henry handball - 10 years on

LIVE: Thierry Henry handball - 10 years on

04:00 PM-05:00 PM

Share

Up next

LIVE: Rep of Ireland v Denmark preview

LIVE: Rep of Ireland v Denmark preview

05:00 PM-06:00 PM

Share

OTB Gold

OTB Gold

06:00 PM-07:00 PM

Share

Highlights on Off The Ball

Highlights on Off The Ball

07:00 PM-10:00 PM

Share

OTB Gold

OTB Gold

07:00 AM-07:30 AM

Share

LIVE: OTB AM

LIVE: OTB AM

07:30 AM-09:30 AM

Share

OTB Gold

OTB Gold

09:30 AM-10:00 AM

Share

Repeat: OTB AM

Repeat: OTB AM

10:00 AM-12:00 PM

Share

OTB Gold

OTB Gold

12:00 PM-02:00 PM

Share

Highlights on Off The Ball

Highlights on Off The Ball

02:00 PM-05:00 PM

Share

00:00:00 / 00:00:00

Share on