MILLWALL goalkeeper David Forde has missed out on a place in the Republic of Ireland squad for Euro 2016.
Forde came on as a half-time substitute in the 2-1 defeat to Belarus on Tuesday night, but manager Martin O’Neill revealed he had cut him from the 23-man squad, with Darren Randolph, Shay Given and Keiren Westwood preferred instead.
Forde played in the first four fixtures in Ireland’s qualifying campaign, earning O’Neill’s praise for his performance against Germany in Gelsenkirchen in October 2014 before John O’Shea’s late equaliser in a 1-1 draw with the word champions.
He lost his place to Given for the fifth game of the campaign against Poland, before he was surprisingly overlooked for Randolph when Given went off injured in the return fixture against Germany, a 1-0 win at Lansdowne Road.
Forde lost his place in the Millwall first team to Jordan Archer this season, and O’Neill explained that lack of club action was the main factor in his decision to omit the goalkeeper. “He kept us in the game in Germany and we got that great point, which was hugely significant.
“I do remember the save that David Forde made in Germany to keep it at 1-0.
“It would have been a long way back from 2-0 and we ended up with a point which eventually took us to France. He’s been great around the place as well and that decision was very difficult because he’s been excellent.
“It’s just his lack of game time recently at Millwall obviously hasn’t helped… David hasn’t been playing that much at this minute. It’s hard in that sense."
Forde was praised by members of the Irish media for his reaction to being dropped as he took time to sign autographs for fans after the game in Cork.
Meanwhile, Shane Ferguson was one of the first Millwall players to leave Wembley on Sunday as he had to rush to catch a flight to join up with the Northern Ireland squad for their preparations for the tournament in France.
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