Giovanni Trapattoni maintains that his selection policy guarantees consistency and confidence from his players

Republic of Ireland coach believes that there is merit in his predictable approach to squad selections because it has consolidated a style of playing that is difficult to defeat
Giovanni Trapattoni has dismissed suggestions that there is a risk in making the Republic of Ireland team too predictable by naming the squad so early. The 73-year-old manager believes that the surety instilled by him in the squad is of much greater importance than springing a surprise on the opposition or indeed his own players.

"I have already said the team that starts tomorrow will be the same that will start against Croatia," the Italian tactician told RTÉ. "That is the team that allow us to achieve qualifying. All the team is in good form. We couldn't change. It is consolidated."

He continued: "We play with closed eyes, that is my guarantee. Also when we need to change, the other players played very well. I couldn't change because all players are playing very well.

"I watch DVDs and we have scouts in every game. Other managers watch and they see the games our team played. It is not only the last 90 minutes. They know all about us. We know all about them."

Boys in Green captain Robbie Keane has also endorsed Trapattoni's methods, echoing the sentiment that the team plays with greater confidence when each player knows their role and that they are in the squad.

"Since the manager has taken over, he has been very comfortable in naming is team the day before games," Keane told RTÉ.

He continued: "I have played under a lot of managers who are very, very concerned about naming the team until an hour-and-a-half before the game because of players knowing other players from different teams and speaking to them.

"The manager has always done it like that and as a player, it's always good to know that you're playing, so I am sure the lads will take great confidence from that," said Keane.

Meanwhile, Trapattoni has confirmed that his veteran goalkeeper Shay Give is clear to play against Hungary today, but there still appears to be question marks over John O'Shea's fitness. The manager has asked the Sunderland defender to prove that he is ready.

"Given is okay. O'Shea, I was waiting. No injury, but he didn't play with us," said the former Juventus and Bayern Munich manager. "Until this game I don't know if he is 100 per cent."

He continued: "That is the test for him and I'm sure now he is ready. After the game hopefully we can say he is okay and is 100%.

"Maybe not 90 minutes. Maybe it is good he gets just 70 minutes. It is no problem. I think about Croatia," concluded the Italian.