Only the gifted can truly charm a football audience. While there is always much to admire in a flying full-back, crafty centre half, tidy midfielder, or an opportunistic frontrunner, the skilful artist is the favoured protagonist. That is exactly why Jay O’Shea is capturing the hearts of Terryland Park regulars.
There is no disguising the ripple of excitement that envelops the Corribside venue when O’Shea gathers the leather. Even before his sizzling seventh minute strike on Friday evening O’Shea had been prominent and productive, creating space with his astute movement and nifty footwork. It was easy to see why Birmingham City are anxious to bring O’Shea over to the midlands for further evidence of his prowess.
Jeff Kenna is adamant O’Shea will progress. “Obviously once we’ve survived we’ll sit down with him (O’Shea ) and see where he wants to go. I have had a couple of chats with him, he is keen to play at as high a level as he can, he does want to go over and play in England and I think that’s going to happen sooner rather than later.
“I spoke to people at Birmingham, they are aware of him, but he is on a contract certainly for next season so he won’t be going anywhere on the cheap, I can tell you that.”
It was a hectic week for O’Shea filled with positive news regarding cross channel talk and a merited call up to Don Givens’ Republic of Ireland under 21 squad for the October 14 friendly with Lithuania in Kaunas. O’Shea is encouraged by the fact that the Blues have expressed an interest. "Nick (Leeson ) brought me in on Tuesday. The club got a letter off Birmingham looking for me to go over on trial. They have to get permission because I am under contract. They will let me go over at the end of the season for a few days’ training and I will probably play in a reserve game while I am there.
"I would like to play in England. I have another year left on my contract with Galway, hopefully I will keep playing well and not let things get to my head.”
There was no hint of that as O’Shea dismantled Cork City on Friday night and the ultra promising 20-year-old is thrilled by the opportunity to be involved at international level again. " I am over the moon. It was a shock because there were two squads out in the last month and I didn't get called up for them so I didn't expect it.
"I played under-19s last year and I would know most of the lads anyway from playing schoolboy in Dublin. It is good to be involved and it is good to see that Don Givens is looking at players who are based in Ireland.”
Affairs in the emerald isle are foremost in O’Shea’s thoughts too. Guiding Galway to safety is one of O’Shea’s errands. "You have to believe that we can stay up. It is within our reach, we just have to beat the teams in and around us in the table and take points. Everyone is up for the games and they are all important between now and the end of the season.” O’Shea has demonstrated an admirable ability to cope with these types of high stakes fixtures, ensuring the partisans depart content and alive to the possibilities sport brings.