Sunderland’s McClean moves on from Twitter spat

James McClean
James McClean

JAMES McCLEAN insists his spat with Giovanni Trapattoni is “over and done with” after returning to the fold for the Republic of Ireland.

Sunderland winger McClean impressed in a 30-minute run-out from the substitute’s bench in Ireland’s friendly against Oman last night – a 4-1 win which also saw Black Cats team-mate David Meyler make his senior international bow.

McClean has endured a humbling few days after venting his frustration at boss Trapattoni on Twitter, following Ireland’s fortuitous World Cup qualifying success over Kazakhstan last Friday.

The 23-year-old was forced to apologise to both his team-mates and Trapattoni, who branded the former Derry City man “lucky” to still have an international future.

But McClean put his off-the-field difficulties to one side with a bright cameo at Craven Cottage – denied by a stunning save from Wigan stopper Ali Al-Habsi from a free-kick and then sending a scorching volley over the top from Meyler’s pass.

McClean said: “It was idiotic and a bit frustrating from me, but now I want to put the matter behind me.

“At the end of the day, I am human like anybody else and showed my frustration. I have learned from it. I have stopped tweeting, Facebook and all those social networking sites.

“I’m able to laugh about it now and we’re able to joke about it, so it has helped integrate me, I suppose. As I said, it was idiotic and it is over and done with now. I’ve learned from it.

“It’s the greatest honour to play for your country and that’s where my frustration came from.

“I’m just glad that it’s all over and done with now.

“I’m delighted to get on the pitch considering what has happened on this trip,

“I was chomping at the bit and it was nice to get on. Unfortunately, I was not able to get at least one goal.”

Despite McClean’s impact and the support from the crowd, who cheered his every touch, the Sunderland wideman is likely to remain on the bench for Ireland’s qualifier against Germany next month.

“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.

“I am not angry with him (about the Tweet).

“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.”

Meyler will be overjoyed if he can keep his place in the squad for next month’s qualifiers against Germany and the Faroe Islands after an impressive 90-minute debut.

The midfielder was typically tigerish and almost marked his international bow with a goal when his fierce shot was parried by Al-Habsi with seven minutes to go.

Trapattoni added: “The victory is important for us.

“We made a lot of changes, but we played technically well. Robbie Brady was good, David Meyler played well and James McCarthy impressed me with his personality and so did Seamus Coleman.”