Ireland's new striker Rooney intent on taking his chance after first day with senior set-up

The Dubliner hopes to catch the eye during this week’s training camp.

Rooney during today's session.
Rooney during today's session.
Image: Donall Farmer/INPHO

HAVING ENJOYED A relaxed first day with the Ireland senior squad, Adam Rooney is ready to get down to work in order to impress manager Martin O’Neill.

The 27-year-old Dubliner took part in a light training session at the international team’s new training facilities at the National Sports Campus in Abbottstown after making the cut when O’Neill trimmed his provisional squad down over the weekend.

Rooney caught the eye in the Scottish Premiership last season, scoring 28 goals in 47 appearances for Aberdeen, and Ireland number two Roy Keane was sent to watch him in action.

He has continued that form into the new campaign with four goals in his first five league matches for the Dons, who are a single point off Celtic at the top of the table.

“It was nice to get the know the lads but I would know most of them from playing U21s and stuff and I would have come across others,” Rooney said when asked how today went. “It has been enjoyable.

I’ve started the season well and after a good year last year I’m feeling confident and scoring goals so that’s the main thing.

“Come the end of the last season when I was named in a provisional squad, I became aware that I was on the radar but since then I’ve started the new season well and managed to break in.

“I’m just happy to be here at the minute. I’m only in the door but I’m going to work hard in training and hopefully score some goals and if I can get the chance I’ll try do that.”

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Soccer - Europa League First Qualifying Round - Second Leg - Aberdeen v Shkendija - Pittodrie Stadium Rooney has four goals for the Dons this season. Source: Jeff Holmes

The former Crumlin United schoolboy and Ireland U21 international, who began his professional career with Stoke City before stints at Inverness Caledonian Thistle, Birmingham City and Oldham Athletic, is one of five strikers in the latest squad alongside captain Robbie Keane, Shane Long, Jon Walters and Kevin Doyle.

With Daryl Murphy injured, O’Neill was keen to introduce Rooney to the international fold but he is unlikely to make his debut against Gibraltar on Friday or Georgia next Monday.

Nevertheless, he will be willing his Ireland team-mates on to pick up maximum points from the two games as they continue to chase a place at Euro 2016.

“We need two big wins,” he said. “They are going to be difficult games but we have to make sure that we go in and get the points on the board and hopefully results go for us in the other games.”

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