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Loan Celts

Cillian Sheridan called into Ireland squad

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Forgotten striker Cillian Sheridan is looking to make the most of his surprise international call-up.

The 21-year-old spent the season out on loan at Plymouth and St Johnstone and has earned a place in the Ireland squad that faces Paraguay and Algeria next week in Dublin.

Behind the experienced duo of Kevin Doyle and Robbie Keane there are a number of strikers competing for places with Sheridan hoping to make a mark before attempting to resume his Celtic career.

He said: “I have to try and put myself in the manager’s thoughts. There is world-class competition ahead of me with the likes of Robbie and Kevin so if I get a chance in the two friendlies, hopefully I can do well and impress.

“There was a bit of talk about me in relation to Ireland in the papers when I was doing well for Celtic and playing in the Champions League.

“Then things went quiet as I was away from Celtic and on loan so I wasn’t in people’s minds. So getting into the squad now is a bonus for me.

“I hadn’t planned on being here so it’s a surprise. I was supposed to be going to the FA Cup final at Wembley on Saturday.

“Jody Morris was with us at St Johnstone last season so he had arranged for a few lads to go down and see the final, but then the call came from the FAI so I was happy to miss the Cup final.

“I had no holidays booked so it was no problem for me to come to Dublin and train with the squad.”

Sheridan has had a curious Celtic career after making a surprise debut against Inverness Caley Thistle in the Scottish Cup as an 18-year-old.

Injuries to Georgios Samaras and Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink in the autumn of 2008 threw Sheridan into the Champions League alongside a run of four goals in eight games.

Since his last Celtic appearance the striker has turned out for Motherwell, Plymouth and St Johnstone on-loan with Tony Mowbray barely considering the striker during his time in charge of Celtic.

Like everyone else Sheridan is in the dark about who will get the Celtic managers job on a permanent basis but like most players he is hopeful that Neil Lennon’s appointment becomes permanent.

He admitted: “It would be good to see Neil Lennon get the job. I have worked with him for a while now at Celtic and he knows what kind of player I am.

“I don’t know how highly he rates me but I have been happy to work with him before, I was only there for a month when Neil was on the staff as I went out on loan but I have spoken to the other Celtic players and they are very happy with Neil.

“I have a full season left at Celtic so I aim to make an impression next season. I don’t think any player should be content with being on the bench all the time, getting the odd game here and there as a sub.

“At this stage of my career I need to play and play every week. That’s my aim for next season, to work hard with Celtic and get into the team.”

Evening Herald interview

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