'I wasn't good enough for Ireland last season' - Hibs' Daryl Horgan speaks on national team hopes

Winger has six caps to date
Daryl Horgan in action for the Republic of IrelandDaryl Horgan in action for the Republic of Ireland
Daryl Horgan in action for the Republic of Ireland

Daryl Horgan's last international appearance came nearly two years ago, in a friendly match between the Republic of Ireland and Poland in Wroclaw. The winger was given nine minutes.

Five days earlier he had come on as a 77th minute substitute in a 4-1 UEFA Nations League defeat to Wales in Cardiff.

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He had also been given runouts against Turkey and the USA in March and June respectively after making his debut in a 1-0 friendly defeat to Iceland in March 2017 and playing 73 minutes of a 3-1 defeat to Mexico in June of that year.

Martin O’Neill was the Republic of Ireland manager for all six of Horgan’s caps to date but the wideman didn’t get a look-in under successor Mick McCarthy beyond inclusion in preliminary squads.

Not that the winger feels aggrieved.

"I didn't play under Mick McCarthy at all and you can say what you want about Mick, but I wasn't playing well enough to get in the Irish squad,” he states.

“When you're not in there you need to be doing much better than the players that are already in there, and I wasn't.”

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By his own admission, Horgan wasn’t consistent enough for Hibs during the 2019/20 season, score three goals and registering one assist in all competitions.

But having laid on two for striker Kevin Nisbet in the 4-1 rout of Livingston on Saturday, the winger should keep his place in the starting line-up for Tuesday night’s trip to face Dundee United and if he can keep his form up, he may just catch the eye of the national team selectors.

The fact that McCarthy’s replacement is Steven Kenny, the man who signed Horgan for Dundalk and managed him for three seasons, may give him more of a chance.

Horgan was a standout for the Lilywhites as they romped to three League of Ireland titles and qualified for the Europa League group stages in the mid-2010s, and Kenny has said in the past that the diminutive Galwayman was the difference.

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The former Preston North End attacker isn’t expecting any favours from his former boss however, even if Kenny does favour playing with wingers.

"If I'm playing and I'm playing well then there'll be an opportunity. If I'm not, there won't,” he said.

“I'd never turn down any opportunity to play for my country.

"It would be something I'd love to do again but we'll just have to see. It'll be down to me playing, and hopefully playing well.”