Niall Quinn ended his Republic of Ireland career on 92 full caps, having scored 21 goals in international appearances. James McClean is about to start his.
Warm congratulations from Salut! Sunderland to the bargain buy from Derry City – all of £350,000 with modest add-ons – who has been a breath of fresh air since he came onto the side as a much more than useful substitute in Martin O’Neill’s first home game, the 2-1 win against Blackburn Rovers.
Giovanni Trapattoni has added McClean to his squad for a friendly versus the Czech Republic on Feb 29.
McClean – hope you like Jake’s graphic, James – has tweeted: “Absolutely buzzin and honoured to be called up to represent my country… best feeling there is.”
The news came, of course, on the day we learned that big Niall was leaving the club to devote more time to family and business in Ireland. David Meyler has personal reasons for tweeting this but we could all offer something similar: “Like to say thanks to Niall Quinn for everything he has done for me since I came here. Great man and great servant to SAFC – absolute legend!”
Salut! Sunderland readers who have not done so already should now do three things:
* sign the online petition for the South Stand at the SoL to be renamed the Niall Quinn Stand. Go to this link