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Stephen Ireland. Photo by: telegraph.co.uk

Stephen Ireland is ready for his Republic of Ireland return

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Stephen Ireland. Photo by: telegraph.co.uk

Stephen Ireland is ready to make his return to the Ireland international fold whenever a new manager is appointed — and he has some unfinished business to attend to with Martin O’Neill.

The Cork-born midfielder made his Stoke debut as a sub in a scoreless Premier League draw with former club Manchester City on Saturday.

On loan for the season from Aston Villa, he then revealed that he is willing to come out of the international wilderness after a failed attempt by sacked Ireland boss Giovanni Trapattoni to get him back two years ago.

Ireland believes the change in management will offer him a fresh start with his country, six years after he quit in the Grannygate affair.

And he would relish the chance to work with O’Neill who sorted his transfer from City to Villa but resigned before Ireland signed for the club.

“I think I would like to get together and have a chat and try to put everything on the table, put across ideas and just have a good general chat,” Ireland said.

“If nothing comes out of it, nothing comes out of it, but I think it would be nice just to have a chat. First and foremost it is just Stoke City on my mind.

“I need to get 10, 15, 20 games under my belt first and see how I go with that.

“Then maybe I might get in a position where Ireland want me to play and we could have a further conversation.”

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