Kevin Kilbane's analysis of the soaring Aiden McGeady

Ireland and Preston winger is February's Player of the Month

Preston, Wigan, Stephen Warnock, Aiden McGeady,

Wigan Athletic's Stephen Warnock and Preston North End's Aiden McGeady battle for the ball. Barrington Coombs/EMPICS Sport

One of the standout performers in this season's English Championship has been experienced Ireland winger Aiden McGeady.

The former Celtic star has shone to the extent that he earned the February Player of the Month for the division.

It's a positive for Ireland with the 2018 World Cup qualifier against Wales to come on March 24th and the squad to be named on Monday by manager Martin O'Neill.

It's also a good sign when there have been times in the past when McGeady's ability to produce consistently has come into question.

Off The Ball's Kevin Kilbane knows the 30 year old well from their time playing for Ireland together and he explained how Preston have managed to get the best out of the player this season by fielding him both on the wings and in the hole.

"He's playing a bit of both. He's alternated between the left and right wing at times and as a No 10," he said of a player he regards as "one of the most naturally gifted we've ever produced".

"Certainly in the last month or two, since Daryl Horgan came into the side, [Simon Grayson] had played Horgan on the right and McGeady on the left hand side. Invariably then, what he'll do is make substitutions through the game and as the game's progressing, he'll bring fresh legs out wide and McGeady central so McGeady gets a freer role. But wherever he's played, whether it has been on either wing or through the middle, he has been outstanding.

"His form has been so consistent and he's been enjoying his football."    

Kevin also added that McGeady does think about his game deeply in a search for self-improvement.

Between 2010 and 2014, McGeady was playing in Russia with Spartak Moscow and consequently was a little out of sight, out mind to observers and fans in Ireland.

With Preston's matches and highlights much more attainable, it means his good performances are not going unnoticed.

"I think we were a little unaware of him when he was out with Russia. We wouldn't have been seeing him regularly, albeit he did have good spells over there when he was playing in Moscow. But certainly it's right in our faces now and we're all seeing how well he's playing every week," said Kevin.

As for the Wales match, on current form, Kevin expects McGeady to either come off the bench or even start at the Aviva Stadium.