Club/country row Preston North End boss frustrated after Alan Browne tests positive for Covid-19 while on Ireland duty
Preston North End boss Alex Neil has spoken of his frustration after key player Alan Browne tested positive for Covid-19 while he was away with the Republic of Ireland and he has suggested that clubs may be reluctant to release players for international duty.
Preston forward Sean Maguire was capped in the 0-0 draw with Bulgaria in Dublin but club-mate Browne missed that game and the clash with Wales after his positive test, the sixth Ireland player to contract the virus while on international duty.
“He’s ok, it’s extremely frustrating," Neil said today when he was asked about Browne's health, the Cork native now sidelined for his club for a spell as he will have to isolate.
"I can understand domestic teams being reluctant to let their players go on international duty at the moment because it’s the clubs that then get punished for something that is out of their control."
Before the Bulgaria match, Browne's teammate Conor Hourihane said he had feared that this month's international games would not go ahead after a series of positive tests in the October international window.
Last night Stephen Kenny praised the attitude of his Ireland players for coping with Covid-related issues.
"The fact that the players have had to endure what they have had to endure over the last couple of months, every day having to deal with Covid-related issues, it’s very unsettling for themselves and their families. It’s been a very difficult period over the last two months. We lost some players with bereavement in this camp, James McCarthy's father unfortunately passed away,we lost players through injury," Kenny said.
"We appreciate [the players’] commitment over the last couple of windows, because it hasn’t been easy for them. They have given everything.
"There were a lot of issues and in the last two camps, we were probably missing players in double figures. But regardless, all of the players showed a brilliant mentality, gave everything of themselves, took everything in their stride and just applied themselves correctly, so I applaud them for that and for their determination even though we didn't win the game."