Republic of Ireland interim manager Noel King believes Tuesday’s victory over Kazakhstan has ‘sown the seeds’ for a bright future, whoever takes over the reigns on a full-time basis.
The Boys in Green ended a run of five games without a win in the final match of a hugely disappointing World Cup qualification.
Having been heavily criticised for his team selection in Cologne last Friday, the Under-21 boss handed a recall to Andy Reid at the Aviva Stadium, and watched his team play some encouraging football as they came from a goal behind to claim the three points.
King believes the past 10 days have paved the way for a bright and expansive future, particularly with players such as Reid, Anthony Stokes and Darron Gibson reintegrated and boosting the resources. However, the team's success greatly depends on who is appointed to the top job. "It depends who comes in," King said. "If a manager comes in and wants to play long ball, well maybe some of that stuff is not as important as it was.
"If a manager comes in and wants to play a passing game, there were certainly seeds sown there."
Speaking at the post-match press conference at FAI headquarters in Abbotstown, King admitted that the squad are in better shape now than when he took over. "The group would have played a different type of football in the last two games," King claimed "I think they would have defended in a different way and I think they would have attacked in a different way.
"That's my way and I was very clear even before I took the job it was going to be my way, and that's why I was so worried because if my way wasn't successful, then it wouldn't have been very nice."
The former midfielder also admitted he ‘lost the plot’ during his interview with broadcaster RTE at full-time. King reacted angrily to Tony O’Donoghue’s question about striker Kevin Doyle playing out of position but there are no hard feelings between the pair according to King. "I’ve been in the media," King explained. "I worked with Tony in 98fm. I’ll argue with anyone over football. That’s football.
"I lose the plot. I have lost the plot on the pitch. I’ve lost the plot off the pitch."
While King had a spring in his step after guiding the Boys in Green to victory, the atmosphere changed dramatically when the subject of Gibson’s injury arose. The Everton midfielder suffered a damaged his cruciate ligament in last night's win and the caretaker boss doubts if he will play again before May.
"It's awful," King said. "It might be a few months. Won't be easy to get back this season."
Ireland’s next competitive game is not until next September but the FAI are in talks about arranging two friendlies in November, during the World Cup play-offs.