Derry’s James McClean sent Republic of Ireland manager the perfect message when he scored against Arsenal in the English Premiership on Saturday
McClean, 22, was left out of Trapattoni’s squad which will take on the Czech Republic at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin this month but his goal against the Gunners will add strength to sense of shock felt on the back of the Derry man’s omission from the Italian’s squad.
McClean has been in fine form for Sunderland so far this season; last week he netted his third goal for the Black Cats in their 1-0 win over Stoke City.
Earlier this week it was believed that Trapattoni would include the Creggan Heights man in his squad but McClean’s name was absent from the list of players announced on Friday.
“I was in touch (with James) yesterday (Thursday),” said Trapattoni. “I have seen him [McClean] many times. I spoke to him. I said to him congratulations James. He said thank you.
“I said to him you come with us. Maybe not now.”
Derry City manager Declan Devine worked with McClean when the talented winger played under Stephen Kenny at the Brandywell.
The Derry boss said that while he was disappointed for him he believes that McClean’s ability speaks for itself.
“I thought a young lad, in terms of his ability and who has hit the ground running and made such an impact, might have been looked at in a friendly.
“In my opinion he is such an asset in terms of his athleticism, power and goal scoring threat.
“I don’t think anyone at Derry has been surprised at how James has done.”