Brady blasts Ireland reports
City star remains in self-imposed exile, according to assistant
By Peter Fraser. Last Updated: 19/01/09 3:17pm
Ireland: City star
Republic of Ireland assistant manager Liam Brady insists it remains Stephen Ireland's decision to continue his self-imposed international exile.
Manchester City star Ireland has not represented his country since facing Slovakia in a European Championship qualifier in September 2007.
The midfielder has made himself unavailable for selection after causing controversy when withdrawing from a squad to face the Czech Republic in the same month as he lied about his reasons for asking to leave.
Recent speculation suggested Ireland was ready to end his absence for the forthcoming World Cup qualifier against Georgia on 11th February, but the 22-year-old has not been named in boss Giovanni Trapattoni's squad.
Rumour has, therefore, implied Ireland has been overlooked by the Republic management, but Brady - who met with the player after Trapattoni began his reign in 2008 - insists that is not the case.
An angry Brady told Sky Sports News: "When we went to Manchester to meet him, we agreed with Stephen Ireland that he would contact us when he was ready. Is that not clear?
"The manager has explained the reasons. He has a system and he wants to stick to the system."