World Cup : Irish dream team - Keane, Whelan, Houghton, O’Neill

Picture credit; David Maher / SPORTSFILE
Picture credit; David Maher / SPORTSFILE
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The defence and ‘keeper have been chosen - now we reveal who you choose to play in midfield in your All Ireland World Cup dream team.

Three Republic of Ireland players make your team, and are joined by one of the North’s heroes of 1982 - and no stranger to Derry.

Current Ireland boss Martin O’Neill captained the north’s 1982 World Cup side as they shocked hosts Spain before exiting in the quarter fnals.

A mainstay of the Nottingham Forest team who dominated Europe in the late 70s, O’Neill, who as a young man boarded at Derry’s St Columb’s College, won 64 caps for Northern Ireland - and received the nod from 43% of respondents in our poll.

He is joined in midfield by three of the Republic’s World Cup heroes.

Roy Keane, chosen in 91% of your team selections, is a Manchester United and Ireland legend, who played in every Republic of Ireland game at the 1994 FIFA World Cup, although he was sent home from the 2002 World Cup after that spat in Saipan.

Ray Houghton and Ronnie Whelan - the midfielders who complete your middle of the park quartet - are both remembered for goals etched in the Irish footballing folklore.

Houghton, scorer of the goal that beat England in Euro ‘88, played at both the World Cups in 1990 and 94.

Few will forget the midfielder’s winning goal against Italy - revenge for the exit in Itlaia 90 - at Giants Stadium in 1994. The ex Liverpool man finished his career at international level with 73 caps.

Whelan, a club mate of Houghton’s at Liverpool, made his debut for Ireland in 1981 - the highlight of his career was a spectacular long-range goal in a draw with the USSR at Euro 88 - played at the World Cup in both 1990 and 1994