Republic of Ireland striker Kevin Doyle has spoken optimistically about Ireland’s chances of success at the European Championships.
The last five years have been a rollercoaster ride for the Wexford native and he seems glad of a break from cross channel football. It’s been a turbulent half decade for the 28 year-old who has taken in play off heartache followed by promotion to the Premier League sandwiched between two relegations from the Premier League in that time.
This season Doyle has struggled for form and he admits that he was not enjoying his football as Wolves went into freefall and were relegated several weeks before the end of the season.
There is a new manager and new times coming at Molineux, but the former Cork City player is ready for a new challenge elsewhere. He has considered the possibility of playing on the continent also.
He remained loyal to Reading when they were relegated, but, at 28, he’s older and wiser now. It is time to be a little more selfish, although he wants to avoid another relegation battle at all costs.
“It wasn’t one of my best,” he said when asked about the season just gone.
“I probably didn’t enjoy it from start to finish. It wasn’t great for anyone. I’m glad it’s over and I’m glad this (the European Championships) is coming up.”
“Ideally, I would love to be back playing in the Premier League but also I don’t want to be relegated again. I would rather have a year in the Championship fighting to be promoted rather than (that).
“I have experienced five seasons of being one of the favourites to go down and being in that s**t, excuse my French.
“Whatever options I have in the summer, if that is the case, I would think carefully about it, I won’t make a rash decision.”
He has previously been courted by Arsenal though such big hitters are no longer interested in his services. At the time he wanted to stay loyal to the Royals, but they eventually had to bow and sell him when Wolves came along with an offer ($6.5million) that they simply could not afford to refuse.
His international manager has often touted moves abroad for his players and, if he impresses during the European Championships this summer, the striker sees no reason to rule out a continental experience.
“I’d never have any issues playing abroad, I don’t see why if you had the opportunity you wouldn’t take it,” he said.
Doyle’s confidence seemed to suffer as he was left on the bench during the season, with his form not being what it was in recent seasons. Doyle has refuted those claims however.
“Everyone has their opinion. My goal-scoring this year wasn’t good but in the Premier LeagueI have always played with teams who are one of the favourites to be relegated,” Doyle argued.
“I’ve been top scorer in those teams the majority of the seasons I’ve been there and I’ve been one of the top scorers in the Championship the two seasons I’ve been there.”
“I always have an inner confidence. I suppose you have a day-to-day confidence as well. Some days you can hit a million shots and not hit the side of a bus.
“Your day-to-day confidence can go up and down. But the inner confidence has never been a problem. I know how to play and I know how I can play. Self-belief is never an issue for me.”
Trapattoni appears to share the same confidence in him though Doyle faces stiff competition for the striking berth alongside Robbie Keane with both Shane Long and Jonathan Walters having played more games and scored more goals than him this season.