No quick start for McClean
Republic of Ireland manager Giovanni Trapattoni will continue to exclude James McClean from his starting XI despite an impressive performance from the Sunderland winger in Tuesday night's 4-1 win over Oman.
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14. James McClean
McClean received the biggest cheer of the night at Craven Cottage when he came off the bench on the hour to replace captain Kevin Doyle.
The Sunderland man had the crowd on their feet twice more during his 30-minute cameo, firstly when he drew a world-class save from Ali Al-Habsi with a brilliant free-kick, and then when he hammered a tremendously difficult volley just centimetres over the Oman bar.
McClean vented his fury at Trapattoni on Friday when he appeared to criticise the Italian for not bringing him off the bench in Kazakhstan, where the Republic scraped a 2-1 win with two last-gasp goals.
But despite his excellent showing in south-west London it appears the talented 23-year-old will be on the bench again when the men in green take on Germany in their World Cup qualifier against Germany on October 12.
"Probably no," Trapattoni replied when asked if McClean would start against the Germans in Dublin.
"Because I think about Aiden McGeady and others. Every manager must think about the strength of the opponents."
Trapattoni denied that his decision to start McClean from the bench was not down to his unsavoury Tweet, which means that even though the player continues to impress for the Republic and Sunderland, the 73-year-old still feels the midfielder is not ready for the international arena just yet.
"I am not angry with him (about the Tweet)," Trapattoni said.
"I never get angry with my players. I have coached 2,000 players in my career. I wouldn't be a manager if I got angry with my players and I don't watch Twitter."
All eyes had been on McClean following the Tweet, for which he apologised on Saturday, but it was 20-year-old debutant Robbie Brady who stole the show at Fulham's ground last night with a goal and two assists.
"I think Brady played well in the first half," said Trapattoni, who withdrew the winger in the second half.
"He scored a goal also and I think he can also do better.
"He might be called up in to the squad for the next match, but he would not necessarily be in the team."
Oman boss Paul Le Guen was impressed with the performance of Trapattoni's team, which included 10 changes from the XI that won in Astana.
"It's not such a big surprise for me (how the Republic played)," the former Rangers manager said.
"They are powerful side, they are fast. It was too complicated for us and too many of our players are not fit enough because the season has not started yet in Oman and the players have just finished Ramadan.
"We knew it would be tough."