Why Ireland would be wrong to sack Stephen Kenny – Phil Thompson EXCLUSIVE

Should he stay or go? Thommo runs the rule over the under-fire Ireland manager

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PPTV’s Rob Catterson and Phil Thompson have a chin wag about all things Ireland and discuss the future of their manager Stephen Kenny. Should he stay on as Ireland’s commander-in-chief? Or has his time at the helm run its course? Our man Thommo has his say on the matter.

Check out our latest odds on Ireland’s next permanent manager HERE.

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Phil Thompson:

Do they need a change at the top? Well, they keep changing at the top and I think we’ve just seen a lack of quality coming through the Irish ranks. 

If we look back, we’ve had wonderful Irish players playing over here in England. If you had a couple unknowns they could be carried through a bit but there’s a real lack of quality. If you look at Wales, at the moment they’re clinging onto the back of Aaron Ramsey and Gareth Bale and you need those couple of top quality players to get good results – that’s what Ireland need at the moment. 

I do fear for Stephen Kenny, everyone gets on his back but people should look at the tools that he’s got to work with. They’re really short of a Robbie Keane or a Damien Duff. Keane was always someone that they could really rely upon to go and score goals and pull them out of the mire, much like Bale with Wales. At the moment there’s not one player they could pin their hopes on. 

I always think with teams like Ireland and Scotland, that it’s good for the manager to be someone who knows the players, knows the people and knows what they’re dealing with. It’s alright going with these sexy foreign managers but somewhere along the line I think you’ve got to go with your tried and trusted who understand the mentality of the players.

I think if they were to replace Kenny it would most likely be an Ireland legend that they’d go for. You can just keep changing at every qualification stage, it’s not going to help matters. If they give Kenny a good go at turning it around, someone then might come along and kick things on a little bit. Chopping and changing doesn’t do any good.

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