Following in Robbie Keane’s footsteps must be up there for most Republic of Ireland forwards, but Sean Maguire is confident that if given the chance, he can bring goals to Mick McCarthy’s side.
Keane scored a record 68 goals in 146 appearances for the Republic of Ireland but since he retired in 2016, no one has stepped in to fill his boots. Admittedly, Maguire has only made 4 appearances for the national side as he has been out with injury for a substantial amount of time but after his latest come back, it feels (please don’t let this tempt fate) that he may finally be getting over his injury problems.
Seani however, is confident that given a run of games, he will score goals. He said to Sky Sports: “I think when I’m playing, when I’m fully fit, my record speaks for itself. But when I have put the Irish jersey on, I don’t think I’ve done myself any justice.
“I’ve only had one start and a couple of cameos, but when I started this time last year against Turkey, I didn’t particularly play well at all and didn’t play up to the standards I set myself.
“But given the opportunity, I think I can bring goals.”
Since his retirement, Robbie Keane is now involved with the Republic of Ireland squad and Maguire has said that his presence in and around the lads in the squad was having a positive impact on the players.
“It was my first-time meeting Robbie, coming in on Sunday and he brings that aura with and you want to learn from him straight away,” Maguire said.
“It’s just great to be involved with a player of his stature, and I’ve no doubt that even in the space of these 10 days being involved with Robbie, I’ll probably go from strength to strength and kick on as a player.
“He’s a player you want to look up to and everything you want to be. Hopefully in these next couple of games, I can kick on my international career.”
Let’s hope that the impact Robbie Keane is having on Maguire and the rest of the Ireland squad will pay dividends for us in the run-in. Since his return from injury, Seani has hit 3 goals and got 3 assists in 18 appearances (including substitute appearances), contributing to a goal for North End every 3 games, including snatching the 94th minute winner for Alex Neil’s men in the last game against Birmingham City.