Giovanni Trapattoni told the media that he was slightly bemused by the reception given by the crowd on James McClean’s introduction as a substitute in the recent friendly international at the Aviva Stadium.
He jokingly told the media that it was James McClean and not Lionel Messi who had entered the fray!
If the Italian has any worries about this type of adulation going to James’ head or affecting his performances on the field, he can forget it.
James is still the same modest young man he always was and it won’t change him in the slightest.
Maybe it’s a Derry thing, but our sporting heroes seem to appreciate their good fortune and seem determined not to change.
When Charlie Nash was fighting for European titles he was still available at a minute’s notice for charity events and still coaching young boxers for free and was still the same modest, unassuming person he’s always been.
Anyone who’s ever had a conversation with Jobby Crossan would never know just how good he was or what an amazing career he had and he’s the same person today as he was at the height of his career. Like many of our sporting greats he leaves the talking to others.
In this same mould we have Liam Coyle, Darron Gibson and young Shane Duffy, all heroes who don’t forget where they come from.
Who was more unassuming than the late great, Billy Kelly? And didn’t John Duddy take part in a bruising charity football game while preparing for a possible world title shot.
Unless someone would have told you, you wouldn’t have known that Terry Watt was a judo exponent of Olympic stature.
‘Trap’ shouldn’t worry, because when I see the so-called sporting heroes of today, I’ll take a home grown one every time. They know exactly who they are and where they have come from.
Read more from the Doc in the Journal every Tuesday