Republic of Ireland manager Giovanni Trapattoni has confirmed that he has 'no problem' with winger Robbie Brady after appearing to snub the player for the World Cup qualifier against Sweden on Friday, March 22.
The Italian tactician had initially named the Hull City winger in his starting line-up ahead of the game, but noted that he wanted to see if the player was psychologically fit for the clash before making his final decision.
The 21-year-old was eventually replaced by Stoke City striker Jonathan Walters, prompting criticism of Trapattoni's approach to managing his players. However, the former Juventus boss has moved to clarify the situation.
"Reporters all over the world are happy to make a mistake about the manager's words," Trapattoni told reporters ahead of the clash with Austria. "When I said to you I wished to see his psychological condition, I did not say he was confused.
"What I wanted to say was that I wanted to stimulate him psychologically, I wanted to see him stronger psychologically. But I never said — or I didn't mean to say — that he was confused. The headlines then are a different story," he said.
He added: "There is no problem with Robbie. The player is ready, there is no problem. I know. I spoke also with him and said, 'Be careful and don't read it, it's not my bad words or (bad) English'.
"There are situations when a manager wants to stimulate players. I said I wanted to see on the pitch what his condition was. He is not confused," he said.
He continued: "In international games, you need to be strong. The fact that (Glenn) Whelan wasn't fit then conditioned the other two choices (McCarthy and Walters). It had nothing to do with Robbie.
"It was just a consequence of Whelan's injury. It was just a matter of finding the right balance and also the right weight physically within the team.
"We have a mix of technically creative and more physical players. We have two or three players — Brady and Hoolahan are good creative players — and others who are strong and fast, like (Seamus) Coleman, (Shane) Long, (Conor) Sammon. We are at this moment very, very confident about this," concluded Trapattoni.
Meanwhile, Sammon looks set to partner Shane Long in attack when Ireland welcome Austria to the Aviva Stadium on Tuesday, March 26.
Robbie Keane was forced to withdraw from the squad due to a calf injury and he was replaced by Wolves striker Kevin Doyle, but Derby County front-man Sammon appears to be Trapattoni's preferred choice in attack.