According to Stephen Kenny, the manager of the Republic of Ireland, Seamus Coleman is currently experiencing the most successful period of his career, even though he played last season while not being fully fit, reports the LiverpoolEcho.
Coleman moved to Goodison Park from Sligo Rovers for a transfer fee of £60,000 in 2009 and has since become a key player for Everton. Kenny hopes that Coleman, who will be almost 36 by the time of the 2024 European Championship, can lead Ireland towards the tournament.
He responded when questioned about whether his defender was capable of playing as a right wing-back:
“Yes he can! I think he has probably had the best spell of his career in the last two years, I would say.”
Last season, Everton finished in 16th place in the Premier League, with their top-flight status secured in a dramatic 3-2 win over Crystal Palace on the penultimate day of the season. Despite being down 2-0 at half-time, Frank Lampard’s team managed to turn the game around and claim all three points. Republic of Ireland manager Stephen Kenny believes that the pressure of fighting to avoid relegation meant that Seamus Coleman often played when not fully fit. However, Kenny also thinks that this season, the 34-year-old full-back is injury-free and back to his best form.
Kenny said, “Last year was tough for him, recording hamstring injuries and not being able to get into a training rhythm. He had to play matches when he hadn’t had the required training time due to the needs of the relegation battle. They wanted the captain, so he played, and then there were the injuries. People saw in Armenia when he played as a wing-back, he wasn’t quite fit, because he was in that phase of his career.”