The Football Association of Ireland has confirmed Giovanni Trapattoni has left his post as Republic of Ireland boss by mutual consent.
Trapattoni saw his side’s World Cup qualifying hopes all-but-disappear over the past week, which led to the end of his reign. The Italian confirmed the news in quotes reported by the Irish Independent:
I want to thank everyone in Ireland who has given us their support during our time here which has always meant a lot to us.
We leave this country with emotion because we understand the Irish supporters who have a well-deserved international reputation and they have our utmost respect.
I would also want to thank all FAI staff members, including the backroom team and the players who have been great to work with during the last three campaigns. I wish them well in the future and hope that the job we have done leaves everything in a good place for my successor to take over.
Ireland’s World Cup hopes were effectively brought to an end by defeats to Sweden and Austria, which left them six points behind the second-placed Swedes in qualifying Group C.
The only scenario in which they could still book a ticket to Brazil is if Sweden lose their remaining games to Austria and Germany, and Austria suffer defeat to Faroe Islands.
Trapattoni was once hailed a hero by the passionate Irish support when he led them to the 2012 European Championships.
Did Trapattoni do a good job for Ireland?
However, he has also come under heavy criticism for his style of play, which has often been rigid and overly cautious.
The term “mutual consent” is an intriguing one, given that Trapattoni stated three days prior to his exit that he wanted to lead Ireland to the 2016 European Championships. Ciaran O'Raghallaigh of the Irish Mirror quoted the Italian, who said:
I give you my telephone number, and after one or two games (with a new manager) you can call me.
My future is not my decision but I wish to finish. If the FAI wish to finish and change then that’s no problem.
I want to be there for the next campaign.
Giovanni Trapattoni responds to his recent critics... pic.twitter.com/M9X0OsirEA— Paddy Power (@paddypower) September 9, 2013
Martin O’Neill has been installed by Paddy Power as the early favourite for the vacant role.
I think the call of football will be too strong for me to resist. But I have to say, I think Giovanni Trapattoni has done an exceptionally good job.
Mick McCarthy, Brian McDermott, Roy Keane and Chris Hughton are the other main candidates in the frame.