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Del ready to play his part

The defender is hoping to feature against Georgia and Switzerland for the Republic of Ireland

11 October 2019

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Misfortune to his team-mates have led to Derrick Williams being a part of the Republic of Ireland squad for an away double-header against Georgia and Switzerland, but the defender is keen to grab his chance with both hands.

Originally on the standby list named by Mick McCarthy, injuries sustained to Rovers' Irish pairing of Greg Cunningham and Darragh Lenihan have seen Williams promoted to the full squad.

Williams joined up with the squad this week and is currently in Tbilisi preparing for the first clash against Georgia on Saturday afternoon.

And he's eager to step up to the plate for his country.

“My first game was against France so you could say that was the deep end against the future world champions," he said in a press conference ahead of the game.

“I prefer the big moments and this would definitely be a big moment - I would love that chance but there are others who can fill in there.

“One of my goals this season was to get a solid place in this squad. I don't want to be on standby like I was, so here's my chance.

“The night in Paris was one of the best in my career and I’ll never forget the moment my name was called out and then stepping out there.

“It was not the best of games, but I felt that we did alright because they were the World Cup champions a few weeks later.

“If you weren’t a bit nervous then there would be something wrong with you. I did not feel out of place. I didn't feel as if I was getting rinsed.

"But last year was a tough year for me as I kept getting injured. I'd play three games and then get injured for three games and it was an ongoing situation."

Williams has been a regular feature for his club since returning from injury against Fulham at the beginning of August.

Now with the set role at the heart of the Rovers backline, the 26-year-old feels he's playing the best football he's ever played.

"I always knew that if I got fully fit and kept my head down then hopefully I would get back in," he added

“I’m probably playing the best football I’ve played. I was a bit gutted not to make the first squad but I'm here now and I just want to impress.

“Mick said to me that he knows I prefer to play as the left sided centre half but that I might have to do a job at left back.

“He hasn't really said anything and I don't know if I’m allowed to say if he has!

“I said that I’m more than happy to. I just want to play and to try and show him what I’m capable of doing.”

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