The unpredictable world of Stephen Ireland could take
another twist after it emerged that the most complex Irish footballer since Roy
Keane is giving strong consideration to retiring from international football at
the age of 21.
Giovanni Trapattoni, the incoming Republic manager, intends
to visit the player to try to talk him into changing his mind. Sven-Goran
Eriksson, his Manchester City manager, has also made strenuous efforts, but the
player is said to be underwhelmed by his inclusion in Trapattoni's provisional
40-man squad for a training camp in Portugal next month.