The Republic of Ireland manager Martin O’Neill has revealed that there are plans for a fitness camp for Championship players whose season has now ended.

O’Neill said the fitness programme would begin from the 23 to 25of May in Fota Island in Cork.

“We are taking a group of Championship players down for those days. I would say a group of those boys would go to America. The Premier League season ends that weekend before we meet up. There might be one or two of the Premier League players who might fancy doing a little bi of that or coming to America,” O’Neill said.

The manager scheduled friendly games against Mexico and Uruguay. The game against the Mexicans would be in New Jersey on June 1, America but the one against the Uruguayans would be played in Dublin few days later.
The team would have their skipper Seamus Coleman supporting them after O’Neill accepted the player’s request to be around. There are plans that he arrive a day or two before Ireland face the big test against Austria.

The skipper was injured after a very poor challenge from Neil Taylor. The tackle left the Toffees star with a broken leg and he is in his native Killybegs recovering. Taylor was recently handed a two game ban for his action. The manager refused to speak further on the issue as Taylor was remorseful but he clearly said players should know how dangerous their effort could be when they make “a very poor challenge.”

On another issue, O’Neill is an admirer of 25-year old Shane Duffy. The defender is set to play in the Premier League as Brighton are promoted from the Championship. O’Neill said he liked that the player was “strong in the air” and that he got to play regularly at Blackburn and Brighton. The manager added that Duffy needed “more awareness” as it would help him avoid being caught out like in the game against the Moldovan football side. He asked that he improve his speed a bit but praised his attitude in camp.