Republic of Ireland manager Mick McCarthy says he has called Derby County’s Richard Keogh to offer support with the player to miss Euro 2020, the Irish Sun report.
Keogh was involved in an off-field incident during last week, reported by The Telegraph.
The defender has since been ruled out for up to 15 months after sustaining knee ligament damage. That means he will miss Ireland’s Euro 2020 campaign should they make it.
Keogh has been a regular under McCarthy in the Irish set-up. And the former Ipswich Town boss admits he has since reached out to offer his support.
He was pretty sore when I spoke to him. I didn’t have that discussion with him, I rang him to see how he was and offer him my support because he’s a really great guy. It’s a terrible injury, that was my phone call, bit of support. What do I think of Richard? I think he’s a wonderful player and a great bloke. I’m disappointed he’s not playing any of the games. Like I said he’s done something, he’s got to live with it.
In Keogh’s absence, players such as Brighton and Hove Albion’s Shane Duffy and Sheffield United duo Enda Stevens and John Egan will provide options for the Irish next summer.
At Derby, manager Phillip Cocu must start looking at long-term options.
Curtis Davies, 34, and Brighton loanee Matthew Clarke aren’t likely to be at Pride Park beyond next summer. It leaves the Championship club with a big void to fill.
Krystian Bielik is a potential option, but the Pole is arguably better as a central midfielder. Youngster Max Hunt, meanwhile, may find the Championship too much of a step up.
Keogh’s contract with the Rams will expire in 2021. Davies has shown how a 34-year-old can recover from a ligament injury to play again at Pride Park. Keogh must use the former Hull City man as inspiration as he embarks on a long, lonely journey back to fitness.