Pontefract footballer hopes to see Euro action

Paul Green in action for Derby County.
Paul Green in action for Derby County.

PONTEFRACT is represented in the European Football Championships following a late call-up for the Republic of Ireland squad for Paul Green.

The Championship midfielder, who was born in Pontefract, but qualifies for the Irish team through a grandparent, was initially put on standby for the championships in Poland and Ukraine, but received a late call-up due to an injury to Keith Fahey and has been handed the number 21 shirt.

He did not feature in Ireland’s 3-1 defeat in their opening game against Croatia, but could come into contention for the second game against Spain tonight or their final group match against Italy on Monday night.

Green told of his delight after receiving news of his Euro call-up in a phone call from manager Giovanni Trapattoni.

He said: “It’s a great achievement to get in the squad because there are some good players here.

“I am obviously gutted for Keith Fahey, who has been in every squad. I room with him and I am just absolutely gutted for him, but delighted for myself.

“Whelan, Andrews and Gibson are all fantastic players playing in the Premier League, so no doubt it is going to be tough to get into the team.

“But I am there if anything happens and hopefully, I can get some time on the pitch.

“If I get to play in the championships, it would be the biggest achievement of my career so far, definitely.”

Green, 29, is out of contract with current club Derby County after this month and is hoping to fix up a new club when he returns from his international commitments. Newly promoted Huddersfield Town are the latest club linked with a move.

He was believed to be close to joining Leeds United until manager Neil Warnock ran into problems with his transfer budget.

Green added: “At the moment, I have left Derby and I am just looking for a club now. My agent is on to it and I think I have got a few clubs interested in me.

“But I have just got to concentrate on things out here now and put that to the back of my mind, and hopefully it will sort itself out when I get back.”