Live

LIVE: Monday Night Rugby

08:00 PM-09:00 PM

LIVE: Monday Night Rugby
Advertisement
Soccer

'It's hard to believe' | Stephen Kenny on Connolly and Idah missing Slovakia game

Republic of Ireland manager Stephen Kenny has addressed the situation that saw Aaron Connolly and...



'It's hard to believe' | Steph...
Soccer

'It's hard to believe' | Stephen Kenny on Connolly and Idah missing Slovakia game

Republic of Ireland manager Stephen Kenny has addressed the situation that saw Aaron Connolly and Adam Idah ruled out of their UEFA Euro 2020 qualifier in Slovakia earlier this week. 

Both players travelled to Bratislava but couldn't feature in the crunch game, which Ireland lost on penalties after extra-time, as they had to self isolate after sitting within two metres of a non-playing member of the travelling FAI party who tested positive for Covid-19.

Kenny has described this person as a 'non-essential' traveller.

Connolly and Idah sat in the back row of the plane in seats that were not allocated to them.

Speaking ahead of Ireland's UEFA Nations League game against Wales in Dublin on Sunday Kenny confirmed this is what had happened on Thursday.

"That does seem to be the case.

"I wouldn't have been aware of that because I was at the front of the flight.

"I'm not going into the operations of flight seating, I'm not getting into that conversation, I don't think that'd be right."

Kenny said that he had sympathy the two players, particularly due to the nature of the nature of events that unfolded.

"I know Arron [Connolly]'s test is absolutely negative, no problems at all so there's no issue with him anyway.

"I really felt for the two players, Aaron and Adam [Idah].

"They're playing in a match to get their team to the European Championships and it derailed on the afternoon of it and then they were publicly named and all that goes with that and they're perfectly fine.

"Under UK law they were fine to continue playing and so forth with distances it's just obviously different medical rules in Ireland over distances.

"It's hard to believe but it's just something we're just going to have to accept."

Although masks were worn by all passengers on the plane, the players were deemed close contacts under HSE guidelines as they spent more than two hours sitting 1.7 and 1.9 metres away from the person.

Kenny didn't criticise anyone in particular when speaking about the incident,

"We have a lot of great staff here, a lot of good people and I think this is a situation that is unprecedented and it is something that we just have to contend with.

"I think without doubt everyone can learn but it's an unfortunate situation and one that we have to live with."

When asked about the communication surrounding the incident and the omission of the pair for the game, Kenny said he felt he did all that was required of him in this regard in his role as manager.

"I'm always very open and quite open on issues.

"I didn't have a strategy - just gave honest answers to questions.

Download the brand new OffTheBall App in the Play Store & App Store right now! We've got you covered!

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


Read more about

Aaron Connolly Adam Idah Republic Of Ireland Uefa Euro 2020