Seamus Coleman emphasizes the importance of hunger and humility for Republic players


Seamus Coleman has told the Republic of Ireland’s new generation that hunger and humility are the greatest qualities they can possess if they want to make their mark in international football.

he 33-year-old skipper played alongside Shay Given, Richard Dunne, Damien Duff and Robbie Keane early in his career in Ireland and is now part of a revamped squad full of young players with potential.

However, as he prepares for Saturday’s FAI anniversary game against world no. 1 Belgium, he had some advice for the young stars from Stephen Kenny.

Everton defender Coleman said: “The top players, the really high quality players that we have in the squad, it’s never just about that. You have to stay hungry, stay humble, stay focused.

“The rest of the things that come with being a professional footballer have to take a back seat.

“The players in this squad or any other squad have to be fully focused on just being a professional footballer at the highest level if they want to play their best.

“There’s no doubt we have some very good players, some really good characters. You have to stay focused. Don’t ever think for a minute that you’ve arrived because when you start thinking that, it can be a slippery slope for people too.

“I can’t predict which players we’ll be talking about, but we definitely have some quality in that.”

Coleman’s young team-mates will get an indication of the work they have to do when they face a Belgian side who have robbed some of their biggest names but will still pack a powerful punch in Dublin.

Kenny said: “Belgium is number one in the world for a reason. They are very consistent with every game, whether it’s the Nations League, friendlies or qualifiers. That’s why they’re number one, they still got the wins.

“They have tremendous strength at depth. I know I talked the other day about (Romelu) Lukaku not being in the team, but they have (Divock) Origi, (Michy) Batshuayi and (Christian) Benteke as options for a position and other players we’re good too deliberately.

“It’s not a young Belgian team, it’s a very experienced team and physically strong – players like (Hans) Vanaken who is 6ft 5”, (Leander) Dendoncker, also really physically strong players.

“(Youri) Tielemans is probably one of the most sought-after midfielders in Europe right now, very influential, so they have an impressive squad.” Seamus Coleman emphasizes the importance of hunger and humility for Republic players

Fry Electronics Team

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