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O'Neill: No contact from FAI about Ireland job

Updated: Thursday, 12 Sep 2013 22:03 | Comments

Martin O'Neill has yet to be contacted by the FAI regarding the Ireland job
Martin O'Neill has yet to be contacted by the FAI regarding the Ireland job

Martin O'Neill claims that he has not been contacted over the vacant Ireland management position.

The former Sunderland, Aston Villa and Celtic manager has been out of work since leaving Sunderland in March and has becaome the overwhelming bookmakers' favourite to replace Giovanni Trapattoni.

But when speaking on BBC Radio Five Live on Thursday evening, O'Neill gave the link short shrift, saying: "I have had no contact whatsoever from anyone at the Irish FA (FAI) at this moment and there's not much more I can say about it."

It is, however, understood the 61-year-old is open to an approach, while former Ireland boss Mick McCarthy, currently in charge at Ipswich, has not distanced himself from speculation linking him to the vacancy.

Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert believes O'Neill is an ideal candidate.

He said: "There's no doubt about it, he could do the job standing on his head. No problem.

"I've always said he's a fantastic manager and it would be up to him whether he'd want to go into international football or go back to club football. I don't know but whoever takes him has got a great manager."

And whoever the new Ireland manager is could face a baptism of fire in Germany.

Football Association of Ireland chief executive John Delaney has admitted that, in an ideal world, he would like to have Trapattoni's replacement in place in time for next month's World Cup qualifiers against Group C leaders Germany - who won 6-1 at the Aviva Stadium in October last year - and Kazakhstan.

Delaney told Sky Sports News: "Ideally it would be nice to have a manager in place for the games in October, but that's not a must because it's 12 months until we play our first European qualifiers in September.

"It's important that we get the right man in so we qualify for France 2016."

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