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"I don't care what anyone says" | Stephen Kenny rounds on critics

Republic of Ireland manager Stephen Kenny has strongly defended his abilities after his run of ga...



Soccer

"I don't care what anyone says" | Stephen Kenny rounds on critics

Republic of Ireland manager Stephen Kenny has strongly defended his abilities after his run of games without a win stretched to 11. 

The Boys in Green played out a 1-1 draw with Qatar in a friendly match in Hungary on Tuesday.

Former internationals Richard Dunne, Paul McGrath, Tony Cascarino, and Phil Babb have been critical of ex-Dundalk boss Kenny, who has seen hopes of qualification for the 2022 World Cup effectively evaporate following defeats to Serbia and Luxembourg.

Speaking at the post-match press conference in Debrecen, Kenny didn't mince his words when it came to the critics.

"I've experienced a lot in my life. I feel really strong. It doesn't hurt me because I don't care. I know what I'm doing - very clear what I'm doing, real clarity in what I'm trying to implement. I don't care what anyone says, I'm very clear what I want to do and it's irrelevant to me what other people think, to be honest with you.

"There are people coming out of the woodwork wanting to kick us while we're down, and that's very evident. Maybe that's to be expected, but some people have turned very quickly. We will get back on track and give the Irish supporters a team they can be really proud of."

The national team will face Andorra and Hungary in June friendlies before the next qualifier away to Portugal in September.

Kenny believes it's going to take time for things to fall into place.

"I think we'd be a lot happier if we'd beaten Luxembourg and we haven't. That's a result I'll have to live with and I have to accept criticism for that. I'm not trying to deflect from that, it's something that you have to accept.

"We're very determined to improve. We're implementing a style of play. I've spoken countless times about the number of players we have brought through, which hasn't happened in a decade or more, for sure, we had no players at all through - one player in eight years, or something.

"This is a new era of these players coming into the team and learning from the Seamus Colemans, the James McCleans. I think we've got a lot of talent coming through. Okay - maybe not all of them are ready now - but they will be in due course."

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