O’Neill and Keane leave Republic roles

O’Neill and assistant manager Roy Keane were appointed in November 2013Manager Martin O’Neill and his assistant Roy Keane have parted company with the Republic of Ireland.The pair took over the reins in 2013 and guided the Republic to the last 16 of the 2016 European Championships.However, they did not win a competitive game in 2018 and were relegated from Uefa Nations League Group B4.”I thank Martin, Roy, and the management team for the impact they had,” said Football Association of Ireland (FAI) chief John Delaney.”There have been many highlights during Martin’s reign – none more so than Euro 2016 in France, which will live long in the memory of all Irish supporters.”O’Neill, who leaves alongside his backroom team of Keane, Steve Guppy and goalkeeping coach Seamus McDonagh, signed a contract extension in January to remain as manager until 2020.O’Neill pays price for difficult 2018After their World Cup 2018 qualification hopes ended in a humiliating 5-1 home defeat by Denmark, the Republic’s inaugural Nations League campaign was plagued by poor results and a string of off-field incidents.In September, midfielder Harry Arter pulled out of the squad for games against Wales and Poland following a row with Keane.O’Neill defended his assistant after audio emerged of defender Stephen Ward apparently describing the incident which led to Arter’s withdrawal.Although Arter would return to the squad for October’s fixtures, highly-rated West Ham teenager Declan Rice has remained absent since September.The London-born defender continues to consider whether to represent the Republic, for whom he has featured in three friendlies, or England. Relegation to the third tier of Uefa’s new competition came as they collected just two points, scoring only once, in four games.

O’Neill celebrates the Republic’s Euro 2016 win against ItalySpeaking after Monday’s scoreless draw in Denmark, O’Neill indicated that he wanted to remain in the job.”I always have enthusiasm for the job but I’ll speak with John and we’ll see,” he said.”I speak to him after games. I think I’ll probably be sharing the same flight home with him.”If I don’t do that there I’ll have a conversation with him in the next few days or whenever it may be and it’s always been the case.”The 0-0 draw in Aarhus means O’Neill’s team has now gone four matches without scoring a goal and the Republic, ranked 33rd in the world, failed to win a competitive match in 2018.Republic of Ireland results in 2018L1-0 v TurkeyFriendlyL2-0 v FranceFriendlyW2-1 v United StatesFriendlyL4-1 v WalesNations LeagueD1-1 v PolandFriendlyD0-0 v DenmarkNations LeagueL1-0 v WalesNations LeagueD0-0 v Northern IrelandFriendlyD0-0 v DenmarkNations LeagueEuro 2016 the high point of O’Neill eraThe appointment of O’Neill and former captain Keane in November 2013 was greeted by a wave of optimism among supporters following the decline of the team under Giovanni Trapattoni, which had seen the Republic slump to 67th place in the Fifa world rankings.The new management duo had almost a year to prepare for their first competitive fixture and successfully steered the side to Euro 2016 after a qualifying campaign that featured a 1-0 defeat of Germany before beating Bosnia-Herzegovina in a play-off.A famous win against Italy at the European Championships secured a last 16 match against tournament hosts France but they were beaten 2-1 in Lyon.Veteran players Robbie Keane and Shay Given retired after the end of the tournament but the Republic made a promising start to their 2018 World Cup qualifiers before a scoreless draw against Wales triggered a run of four competitive fixtures without a win and the heavy play-off loss to the Danes, which ended their prospects of qualifying for Brazil.In his 55 games in charge, O’Neill had a win ratio of just over 34% with 19 wins, 20 draws and 16 defeats and he used a total of 65 players, including 28 international debutants.The 66-year-old handed international debuts to 12 players this year as the former Leicester, Sunderland and Celtic manager looked to build a new-look squad for the start of the Euro 2020 qualifying campaign.The Republic will be among the third seeds for the European qualifiers when the draw is made in Dublin on 2 December.

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