John Egan 'disappointed' over...


John Egan 'disappointed' over reaction to Callum Robinson vaccine revelation


04:37 8 Oct 2021

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Republic of Ireland defender John Egan says he was 'disappointed' with the reaction to Callum Robinson revealing he has not been vaccinated against Covid-19.

Robinson revealed on Tuesday that he hasn't at this stage gotten vaccinated against Covid-19, despite contracting the virus twice.

There has naturally been much reaction to this, with many criticising the striker's decision.

Egan was speaking ahead of Ireland's FIFA 2022 World Cup qualifier against Azerbaijan in Baku on Saturday evening.

He says vaccines are a personal choice and that Robinson was not advocating against getting vaccinated but rather outlining his circumstances.

"First and foremost, Callum was asked a question and he gave an answer.

"He didn't come out and say he was against the vaccination or anything, so I was quite disappointed to see how many people jumped down his throat.

"Whether or not to get the vaccination or not is a personal choice, not everybody is going to believe the same way.

"I don't think Cal came out and said he was against the vaccination, I think he simply just answered a question and said he hasn't had it yet so as far as that's concerned Cal is a teammate and a friend of mine so hopefully he can kick on with Ireland and do well."

Robinson is not in the minority when it comes to footballers being vaccinated.

Reports suggest fewer than 35% of Premier League players have received the jab and it's believed 40% of the Irish squad are not protected.

Egan was not eager to discuss whether or not he'd be more comfortable in camp if the majority of the squad was vaccinated.

"To be honest I'd prefer to just play good football. We've got a football game tomorrow, and obviously, the vaccination is a really touchy subject.

"I think we've talked about it now and that should be enough."

Saturday evening's game is a dead rubber in terms of qualifying with Ireland already unable to reach next year's competition.

Going into it they sit second from bottom in Group A with just two points from five games.

Egan has said despite this the mood in the camp is good and that there is evidence of development to be seen.

"Winning breeds confidence, you're in the game to win games, that's what we're trying to do.

"We're trying to get momentum going, we're coming here to try and win the game tomorrow.

"I can see how the team has come on and improved though.

"You've got a lot of young players coming into international football, you can see how much they've improved.

"The last camp especially, we performed really well in the first game against Portugal.

"We didn't get, probably, the result that the performances warranted, but yeah, you can definitely see the improvement in the team and the players individually."

The game will also see Stephen Kenny yet again go for his first competitive win as senior manager since taking on the role last year.

The game may be mean nothing in terms of qualifying but it's huge for Kenny's future.

This is the first of four games, including a friendly against Qatar next week, he has left before his current contract ends.

Egan says they are aware the manager is under pressure but says they also are, with the pride of the jersey a massive incentive.

"Every time we step out on that pitch we're fighting for our own jobs, nevermind the manager's job.

"We're all in this together, every player, every member of staff, the manager.

"We all want to win games for our country, we're very passionate about it.

"No matter when we play, no matter who we play, our aim is to always fight for each other and fight for ourselves and that's just the way we are as Irish people."

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