James McClean has become the great hope for Irish football this season. In good form for Sunderland, scoring goals, at the core of Martin O’ Neill’s renaissance and the clubs improvement in fortunes, a young player with many years ahead of him, and home grown at a League of Ireland club to boot.
But McClean’s emergence provides some problems for the national team set-up ahead of the European championships in Poland and Ukraine this summer. Selection headaches are sometimes viewed as good things – an assortment of riches to choose from – but the situation surrounding James McClean has provoked sharp criticism and pointed questions for the current Irish regime.
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