Norwich City’s Anthony Pilkington - Wes Hoolahan is still a master craftsman
- Credit: PA
Wes Hoolahan's starring role for the Republic of Ireland on their summer tour proved he can still be a force for club and country, insists his Norwich City team-mate Anthony Pilkington.
Hoolahan emerged as a key man for Martin O'Neill's Irish set-up in four friendlies to prepare the Irish for the start of the 2016 European Championship qualifying campaign in September.
The 32-year-old made only 10 Premier League starts in the Canaries' top-flight relegation during a season when the Dubliner had a transfer request turned down following interest from Aston Villa. Hoolahan's future remains a hot topic with Villa and newly-promoted Leicester both touted with summer moves for the midfielder who is entering the final year of his current deal at Carrow Road.
Pilkington was also part of the Republic's touring party and is a firm believer in Hoolahan's qualities.
'He's a great player – everyone in Ireland can see that,' he said. 'I've said many times I don't know how he hasn't got more caps than he has because he's a great little player. When he does get a run in a team, he shows what he can do, but it's been difficult for him.
You may also want to watch:
'He's not had many games for Norwich this past season so he's not really been match-fit coming into the friendlies, but he's a really good player, he's really comfortable on the ball and he can make things happen. When you've got players like that in your team, you've got to build the team around him because they can always create something for nothing.'
Injuries have hampered Pilkington's club and international career but the former Huddersfield midfielder is fully committed to the Irish cause.
- 1 Roads flooded on east coast after heavy rain
- 2 Two Norfolk villages named among most beautiful to visit in England
- 3 Man put hidden camera in bedroom to spy on wife
- 4 Machinery sale marks end of family's 100-year farming history
- 5 Driver taken to hospital after four-car crash on key road into Norwich
- 6 Man in critical condition after being stabbed in Thetford
- 7 Robbers knock out boy, 14, and steal trainers from his feet
- 8 Unlikely new use for city's Samson and Hercules building
- 9 Appeal for rescuers to come forward following Sea Palling incident
- 10 Woman taken to hospital following crash on A146
'Whenever I've been fit, I've always come over and tried to get myself in the team,' he said. 'Just because I've missed a few games this season didn't mean I didn't want to come over.'