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Lee Carsley: England U21 boss not interested in Republic of Ireland head coach role

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England U21 boss Lee Carsley has turned down the opportunity to talk to the Football Association of Ireland about the possibility of him becoming the next senior Republic of Ireland manager, Sky Sports News understands.

The 49-year-old was on Ireland’s shortlist of candidates to replace Stephen Kenny after the FAI confirmed in November that it would not be renewing his contract.

Carsley was approached by FAI officials to discuss the possibility of him applying for the role, but Sky Sports News has been told he turned down that opportunity, saying he is happy in his current role with the FA.

Ex-midfielder Carsley won 40 caps for the Republic of Ireland from 1997-2008 having qualified for the national team through his grandmother.

The former Everton and Derby player led England U21s to European Championship glory last summer – the first time England’s junior side had won the tournament in almost four decades.

The Republic of Ireland are due to face Belgium and Switzerland in a friendly double-header in Dublin in March.

Kenny, who replaced Mick McCarthy at the helm in April 2020, was in charge of Republic of Ireland for the final time in November for a 1-1 friendly draw against New Zealand at the Aviva Stadium.

His departure came following Ireland’s poor Euro 2024 qualification campaign, where the team missed out on a spot at next year’s finals in Germany.

Kenny’s reign comprised 29 competitive fixtures, of which only six – five of them against Azerbaijan, Luxembourg, Armenia and Gibraltar twice – ended in victory.

His early months in charge, which included a penalty shoot-out defeat by Slovakia in a Euro 2020 play-off semi-final, were complicated by Covid-19 regulations which severely depleted his squad over several windows.

Republic of Ireland fixtures

Saturday March 23: Belgium (H) – kick-off 5pm

Tuesday March 26: Switzerland (H) – kick-off 7.45pm

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