‘Birmingham Is Crap, Ireland? I’d Rather Shoot Myself’ – Stephen Ireland Is Not A Happy Bunny

Chris Wright

4th, March 2011


By Chris Wright

In an interview with French magazine So Foot, a vexed Stephen Ireland used the opportunity to vent his spleen about almost everyone and everything that has gotten his dander up during the last few months – including his former manager at Aston Villa, one Gerard Houllier:

“After 15 matches on the bench (at Villa), Houllier told me to stay at home. I trained during the week and on Fridays he told me, ‘no point you coming, you are not in the team’.

“Yet I was the best player in training. It was my team that won in every session. One of the few times he played me, we drew 0-0 at Chelsea and I ended up man of the match.

“Apparently that didn’t matter to him. I was stuck with being paid for doing nothing at all. I was left to myself. I had to pay out of my own pocket for medical treatment. Can you believe that?”

And how did Ireland react at being told by Houllier that he should move to Birmingham to improve his first-team chances? Well, rather badly as it goes:

“Houllier asked me to come and live in Birmingham because it was taking me 75 minutes to come to training, but there were 15 players in the same position as me.

“Some came from London and took more than two hours, but he only asked me to move.

“For a start, Birmingham is a crap city and I wasn’t going to make the effort, especially as I wasn’t playing. Might as well be in Manchester if I had to stay home on match days – though I don’t bear Houllier any grudges; it wasn’t him who chose me after all.”

When asked about his retirement from international football in 2007, Ireland replied:

“I don’t give a damn for Ireland. Live in Cork? I’d rather shoot myself. I prefer Los Angeles.

“Even at youth level, it pissed me off to [play for Ireland]. Everyone came from Dublin. I was the only guy from Cork. I had to take the train on my own, pay for a taxi, there was no hotel, no grub. It was handled so amateurishly.

“National teams don’t interest me. I have more to do than go off for three days to play Andorra. And when you are Irish, you are well aware you’ll never win the World Cup.

“I feel nothing for the team. I absolutely don’t feel guilty when they lose and, when they win, at no time do I think I could have been there.

“Even if Ireland had qualified for the World Cup, I wouldn’t have gone. People call for my return, but I have only played five times for them. The national team and me are ancient history.”

Ireland is hoping to make his debut for Newcastle this weekend after joining the club on loan in January to escape Houllier’s tyranny, though the midfielder admitted in closing that his long-term future is still in the balance:

“I just want to play and have a manager who really wants me for once. I have no idea at the moment who I will be playing for next season. My future is unclear.”

Sick of footballers giving sterile, unoffensive, media-trained-to-the-eyeballs answers during interviews? Stephen Ireland is quite clearly your man.

UPDATE: Ireland has claimed that he was misquoted by So Foot, and issued a statement this afternoon to clear up a few things:

“I’m upset with what has been printed this morning because I feel like I’ve been portrayed in the wrong way. I was misquoted and things have been blown way out of proportion. That is the reason why I feel like I needed to say something because the quotes are very unfair.

“What I said during the interview has been twisted to sound particularly blunt and a lot of what was written about my hometown of Cork – which me and my family visit regularly – was just plain ridiculous.

“The comments regarding Birmingham were also taken way out of context as I had only been at Villa a few months and didn’t even live there so I have no idea what Birmingham is like to live in and everyone I have met from Birmingham has been nice, my girlfriend’s father is from Birmingham so why would I say that, it’s just crazy.

“I can only apologise if anyone was offended, but the way the interview was written made me sound very harsh, and I am not that kind of person.”

So there you go.

Posted in Aston Villa, Newcastle Utd

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  1. K P V says:

    but , but who will buy the pink range rovers ?


    follow me on twitter @andrewabrahim yall

  2. kieran says:

    I could write many things to take apart what he has said but i can easily sum it up by saying,he is a self centred lazy gobby prat who thinks the world owes him something.

  3. Green Villan says:

    Pre madonna ungreatful little shit, hope he breaks his legs in training.

  4. C says:

    “I had to pay out of my own pocket for medical treatment. Can you believe that?”

    Aww, poor poor fella!
    I bet he had to eat ramen for two weeks after that!

  5. kct says:

    Can’t help but think Stephan Ireland got quite lucky here. If that nazi fashion designer wouldn’t have broken the record for most offensive comment of the century, this would’ve created quite a shit storm. What a king-sized tw*t though!

  6. Ping Yang says:

    He was apparently misquoted:


    Make of that what you will.

  7. Andrew Abrahim's saggy bumhole says:


  8. BallyBags says:

    Everyone was from Dublin….. I was the only one from Cork.

    Yeah becasue Dublin has the pick of footballers and you’re all bog trotters who swing hurley’s down there.

    Sad little culchie with a huge chip on the shoulder.

    I want to play for the peoples republic of Cork. Hope that place breaks off Ireland.

    You’ve got no mates thats why your not playing, your attitude stinks

  9. robbie says:

    I’m Irish and believe me, nobody is calling for Stephen Ireland’s return. He’s a disgrace, he’s in a priviliged position to be eligble to play for his country, an honor most Irish would give their right arm for. ‘Had to get a train from Cork’…’no grub’…boo f**king hoo. He’s earning tens of thousands a week now. He should be begging to put on the Irish jersey and play at the Aviva Stadium. His loss. I’m sure he’d qualify to play for Saturn or Neptune because he is clearly from another planet. Idiot.

  10. hmmm says:

    i wrote a message imploring KPV to stop posting stupid requests to follow him on twitter (neswflash: noone cares) and the mods removed it!

    id like to request you to remove his spammy pointless comments!

  11. Harvcore says:

    Personally, I preferred the ‘misquoted’ interview.

  12. Ralph Lauren says:

    Leave the guy alone, he is clearly a cultured intelligent man with a lot of class and taste (just look at his cars).


  13. shay says:

    Cork must really suck if he rather live in Los Angeles!

  14. […] Ireland says Birmingham Is Crap…. Is he right? ‘Birmingham Is Crap, Ireland? I’d Rather Shoot Myself’ – Stephen Ireland Is … Reply With Quote + Reply to Thread « Previous Thread | […]

  15. Tom Jones says:

    He is right.
    Birmingham is the arsehole of the Midlands.

  16. K P V says:


    I do what I want , its not spam, its good yall


    follow me on twitter @andrewabrahim yall , you too hmmm

  17. Anonymous says:

    please go away andrew ibrahim.

  18. ballybagsisaknackerjack says:

    Ballybags sissy boy. You nancys would love to play hurling but you cant. The two best Irish football players ever were from Cork. Jackeen fag. Moaning, thick as shit, west brits. You fuckers are Not Irish. Sub species.

  19. piper says:

    @ tom jones and your the arsehole of this thread. twat

  20. Del says:

    “misquoted” my ass.

    He’s an ungrateful so and so.

    “Birmingham is crap”? Yeah, we know it but you don’t have to say it! Show a little respect!

    Players like him should learn a little something from players like Malouda and Dirk Kuyt.

  21. Nicko says:

    Houllier is a twat.

  22. juancullo says:

    didnt think liam brady and paul mcgrath wer from cork

  23. Bazz Tarace says:

    Nicko is absofruitly right: houlier is a twat

  24. LukkLuck says:

    Dirty stinking inbred culchie. Hope Cork city sign him and he ends up living in a council house in Mayfield.

    Driving around cork with pink rims on a tractor. its a good look stephen

    Arse Hole

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