Robbie Keane will line up for the Republic of Ireland against England tonight at Wembley claiming the teams should have taken the chance “a good few years ago” to banish sorry memories of their last meeting.
The two countries have not played since February 1995 when rioting England fans forced the abandonment of the game at Lansdowne Road with the Republic leading 1-0.
A 14-year-old Keane was in the crowd that night and he understandably does not have fond recollections of the occasion.
He said: “I was a kid in the stand and I didn’t think at this stage we would have a chance to play England.
“This is probably a bit long coming. To be totally honest with you, I think it should have happened a good few years ago, but for whatever reason, it hasn’t happened to try to put to bed what happened a long time ago.”
Ashley Cole will captain England in recognition of reaching 100 caps for his country.
Frank Lampard thinks his Chelsea colleague is a worthy recipient of the honour. He said: “He very much deserves it, not only because he’s won 100 caps but because of the way he performed over those 100 caps.”