Kilbane backs new boss

Kilbane: Exciting times for Ireland

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Winger hoping to be at World Cup in 2010

Kevin Kilbane expects Giovanni Trapattoni to lead the Republic of Ireland to the 2010 World Cup.

The former Italy coach was finally announced as Steve Staunton's successor last week after a protracted search which had been going on for more than four months.

With stability now restored, Trapattoni is faced with the task of leading the Irish to their first major finals since the 2002 World Cup.

One man backing the new boss to have an immediate impact is Kevin Kilbane. The Wigan winger has already played under six different managers during an 11-year international career, but feels that Trapattoni was the ideal candidate to take the country forward.

Big name

"It is a big name and one we are all going to be looking forward to working under," Kilbane said.

"He is going to bring in different ideas and methods and I am sure every player that is going to be taking part is looking forward to it.

"The start of the last campaign was tough because of the draw we had. This campaign is going to be tough again but we feel as though we can qualify for the World Cup.

"We have to believe that. We have done it before and I am sure we have got the squad capable of doing it again."

Youngsters

With the Irish entering an exciting new era Kilbane also reiterated that he has no intentions of announcing his international retirement any time soon.

He did however admit that he may have his hand forced in a couple of years time due to a promising bunch of Irish youngsters already knocking on the first-team door.

"It is not going to be about me in a couple of years' time, it is about other players coming through," he said.

"Over the last few years, we have had a lot of new players come in and taste international football and now I am sure they will be looking to take their opportunity over the coming years."