New York Red Bulls goalkeeper Ryan Meara to play for Ireland - could this mean change in Irish team eligibility?


Ryan Meara

Giovanni Trapattoni has long been of the opinion that there are decent soccer players in America who are eligible to play for Ireland.

Well, very soon we will find out with news that the New York Red Bulls goalkeeper Ryan Meara wants to play for us.

The 6’4” Yonkers native is just 21 and already a regular with the Red Bulls after he was drafted from Fordham University in pre-season.

He’s played eight times in the MLS so far this season and will come up against Ireland captain Robbie Keane and the LA Galaxy this coming weekend which will be interesting.

Ireland under-21 boss Noel King looks set to call Meara up for the forthcoming friendly against Denmark and a European Championship qualifier against Italy at the end of the month.

King told the Irish Sun newspaper, “Ryan has made contact and wants to play for us.

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“We were made aware of his eligibility and we spoke to him and his club. He is keen to give it a go. He was already an Irish citizen and it was just a matter of getting his passport which he has now.

“He’s playing at a good level, with and against international players. I’ve watched him online and spoken to people who have watched him in action there and the feedback has been good.”

With Shay Given coming to the end of his international playing career and no obvious successor on the horizon, this could be a big move for Meara. So long as he’s not another Joey Lapira!


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