Damien Delaney may be considering a return to international duty with Ireland

Alan Pardew hinted at a possible return for the defender from his international exile

Damien Delaney, Ireland, Crystal Palace,

Image: Martin Rickett / PA Wire/Press Association Images

Damien Delaney could be vying for a return to the Ireland set-up, if comments by his manager are to be believed. 

The Crystal Palace defender has not worn the green jersey in recent times after a reported bust up with manager Martin O'Neill, believed to be as a result of the player's demands for more playing time. 

His absence also sparked rumours of an issue with assistant manager Roy Keane, dating back to the time the Corkman was his manager at Ipswich.

In August of last year, Delaney called time on his career with the Republic of Ireland in a statement released on his Instagram account, in which he denied both of those reports, saying:

"I just want to clarify my position with regards to the Ireland national team and my omission from the current squad. I have no issue with Roy Keane and shook his hand this summer at a Cork City European match.

"I know that at the age of 34 the future of Irish football does not lie with me, the rigours of premier league [sic] football and the 24/7 dedication required takes its toll so I look on the international break as a chance to recover, that said I spoke to Martin O'Neill and contrary to his recent comments I never asked for a regular starting position".

 

Good afternoon... I just want to clarify my position with regards to the Ireland national team and my omission from the current squad. I have no issue with Roy Keane and shook his hand this summer at a Cork City European match. I know that at the age of 34 the future of Irish football does not lie with me, the rigours of premier league football and the 24/7 dedication required takes its toll so I look on the international break as a chance to recover, that said I spoke to Martin O Neill and contrary to his recent comments I never asked for a regular starting position. I did however disagree with certain aspects which out of respect to Martin and the national team will remain private. Ireland need to plan for the long term even if it means sacrificing one maybe two major tournaments. We need to build an identity and team ethos from schoolboy football to full international that will last. I understand people weren't enamoured with Mr. Trapattoni but whether you agreed with his philosophy or not you have to respect the man and the results he achieved with his philosophy. There are many footballing philosophies and we need to choose one that suits Irish traits and strengths best, similar to what Wales are now achieving or what Mr. Trapattoni achieved in his time in charge. I'll always be an ardent supporter and wish I could of contributed more... #coybig #identity

A photo posted by Damien Delaney 🚮♻️ (@ddelaney27) on

However, speaking to The Sunday TimesCrystal Palace manage Alan Pardew stated that there was a chance Delaney may have changed his mind and is looking to return to the team ahead of the European Championships in France this summer.

He stated that Delaney "is big enough and bold enough to swallow his pride and do the right thing", and when asked if he thinks his player would make a return to the international set up for the summer said "I think he would".

What remains to be seen is whether O'Neill and Keane would call on his services, given that he was excluded for a number of key fixtures in the qualification run. 

Via The Sunday Times