Byline: CATHAL DERVAN
REPUBLIC of Ireland boss Mick McCarthy has revealed how close Steven Reid came to blowing his World Cup chance.
The Millwall midfielder touched down in Saipan yesterday with the rest of the Irish squad - just 72 hours after his late call-up as a replacement for the injured Mark Kennedy.
But McCarthy has revealed how Reid came close to the biggest gaff of the World Cup after a groin injury forced Kennedy out at the last minute.
"I was not impressed when I rang Steven on Wednesday morning and discovered that he was on his way to the airport for a holiday in Barbados," revealed the Irish boss.
"People have made a lot of the fact that he was on his way to depart for a Caribbean holiday when he switched on his mobile and got the message to ring me for the news that he was in the squad.
"What they don't know is that I had told Steven not to even think about booking a holiday until Friday morning when we were on the plane and on the way to Japan.
"I hadn't put him on stand-by when I named the squad last week but I had told him to be available to travel, even up until the last minute.
"I made it clear that I needed to be able to contact him in case of an emergency call-up and I told him not to do anything about booking a flight until the Friday. …