Anyone prepared to write off Giovanni Trapattoni after this years spate of unfortunate drama's in the Ireland camp would be advised to hold off: the sprightly 72 year old is far from finished.
'My life is like a holiday and I love this job," he told the Irish Times this week. ‘As long as I have my health, am lucid and can do it then I will do it.'
Although he's on record for expressing his strong desire to stay on as Irish coach for the next World Cup campaign, at the very least he plans to attend the draw in Brazil next month he told the Times.
Trapattoni's standing has clearly been bolstered by a thrilling run of four straight victories, featuring 10 world class goals, but it's likely the matches with Slovakia and Russia in September will be the deciders of his fate as Ireland’s coach.
Meanwhile, addressing the contentious disappearances of some of the team's top players in recent months Trapattoni says he plans to deliver some ultimatums to the players before Ireland’s next big game.
Irish soccer squad ingrates a disgrace
'In the future,' he told the Times, 'it will be like this. I will send them a text and I will say: ‘Do you want to come with us again: Yes or no?’ They must be clear about it for you and for the Irish people, not for me.'
“They must be clear. I have worked in four other countries and this behavior is impossible for me to understand. Maybe it’s because they’re young because the senior players answer immediately. The others are like the disappeared.'
If he stays on, and smart money says he will, expect some shake ups in the months ahead.
Food & Drink
Celebrate Potato Day with these lovely spud recipes