John O’Shea puts hat in the ring for Ireland job: ‘I’m more than ready and capable to be a manager’

John O'Shea saw his team lose 1-0 to Switzerland conceding a second half free-kick by Gavin Bazunu

John O'Shea saw his team lose 1-0 to Switzerland conceding a second half free-kick by Gavin Bazunu Credit: Conor Ryan (ETPhotos)

Republic of Ireland interim manager John O’Shea has put his hat in the ring for a more permanent managerial position whether that is with the national team or elsewhere.

Although he did not refute the idea of announcing his candidacy to become Stephen Kenny’s permanent successor to the FAI, O’Shea feels the experience of leading the team over the last two matches has given him the taste for more.

“I think that’s something that we will obviously discuss later on. But for me the full focus was on the two games, enjoy the moment in terms of learn from it and really understand it, learn about myself in terms of how I cope with the situation with the games, and learn do I want to do it more.

“And look, the emphatic answer from me would be, yes. But where that is, let’s wait and see.”

The timing of if or when O’Shea becomes the permanent Republic of Ireland manager is obviously uncertain, perhaps increasingly unlikely after a two-game window that brought zero wins and zero goals, but he gave an indication that he would like the role sooner rather than later.

“My instinct would be that I’m more than ready and capable to be a manager.”

O’Shea was speaking in the wake of Ireland’s 1-0 defeat to Switzerland at the Aviva Stadium and while he was disappointed with the first half showing from his charges he was pleased and encouraged by the levels showed in the second half.

“In that first half-an-hour you would say Switzerland were much better in terms of their control of the game. 

“We were kind of a little bit caught where we didn’t want to be, in terms of half spaces and the organisation then obviously towards the end of the first-half we were aggressive.

“Thankfully what we spoke about at half-time to what we saw in the second-half was really pleasing to see, because it was that attitude, commitment and quality to cause Switzerland problems.

“I wanted to see that in the second-half and we did that. The changes we made in the second-half, I was happy with in terms of their intensity and their attitude towards it. 

“Look, like I said to the players beforehand, and against Belgium too, that’s the level you want to be competing against if you want to qualify for major tournaments.

“Belgium and Switzerland qualify for major tournaments year after year after year, so you have to be clinical, and we weren’t clinical enough in the two games, and that’s something we have to really nail down in terms of taking chances.

“Even from some of the set-piece we got, we’re thinking we should be working the goalkeeper here. We were getting into positions, attacking the ball really well, good deliveries, and it’s just obviously that final thing of working the goalkeeper. I’m a little frustrated at that.

“But as I said right from the off, and to the players right at the end, that second-half was really the response I wanted to see in terms of getting after Switzerland, being really aggressive and showing that we can match these teams.”

The Waterford man who has held coaching roles with Reading, Stoke City and both the Ireland U21s and senior setup prior to this international window, was frustrated by the referee’s decision to award Zeki Amdouni a free kick on the edge of the Irish box which Xherdan Shaqiri tucked away.

“It was frustrating because we watched it back, Dara and Nathan, we saw how angry they were at half-time.

“The referee decided… Dara has obviously stopped and the lad has gone over.

“But still, we can defend the free-kick better. It was a well-worked set-piece from them, but we’d be hopeful of stopping that.”