Martin O’Neill reckons now that there is likeliness of Shay Given getting some game time for the Potters because of the unavailability of the injured Jack Butland, it might help him earn the ticket to France with the Republic of Ireland National squad.
As Given had lacked much Football of late, it was almost certain that he would not be pondered over even for the second choice shot stopper’s spot when O’Neill finalizes the Irish squad for France, but, it would be a different case altogether if he has some games between the sticks now for Stoke.
According to O’Neill, he is not sure whom Stoke would play in the absence of Butland, but, if it happens to be Shay Given and they keep on playing him in all the remaining games, the veteran’s chance of making it to the continental competition will be certainly a lot brighter.
When told that Shay Given is going to be in the mainframe now at Stoke and if that is going to change his position in terms of his Euros chances, O’Neill’s answer was, “First of all, I really feel bad for Jack. He has been such an energetic and fantastic goalie for Stoke in the last little while, but, with him out of the picture now, somebody else will have the opportunity.”
“I don’t know whom they would be going with to be honest, but, in case that’s Shay and he gets to play some matches from here on in, he will surely have his case stronger than what it was maybe a month or so back when he was not in the plans of Stoke.”
Shay Given has had a couple of appearances for Stoke in 2015-16, but, both of them have been non-League appearances.