Ian Wright believes James McClean “should have got sent off” for his reaction following the latter’s dismissal in the Republic of Ireland’s stalemate with UEFA Nations League group opponents Wales.

The Irishman had already been booked for a foul on Connor Roberts before catching Wales’ Ethan Ampadu in the 82nd minute. The foul earned him a second yellow card and his marching orders.

The challenge was deemed to be “worse than it was”, according to Wright, but the former England international believed McClean deserved the sending off for his reaction.

‘He should get sent off for that’

Speaking as a pundit for ITV, Wright was adamant McClean did himself no favours by gesticulating in the direction of the Sheffield United defender.

As quoted by Yorkshire Live, Wright said: “It’s one of those because of the ferocity at which he’s gone in, it looks worse than it is.

“But I don’t think McClean helps himself going across and doing this (pointing in face).


“He pushed him in the head – he should get sent off for that.”

The dismissal was McClean’s fourth career red card for club and country.

Referee Anastasios Sidiropoulos shows a red card to Republic of Ireland’s midfielder James McClean (C) for his challenge on Wales’ midfielder Ethan Ampadu (L) during the UEFA Nations League Group B4 football match between the Republic of Ireland and Wales at the The Aviva Stadium in Dublin on October 11, 2020. (Photo by Donall Farmer / AFP) (Photo by DONALL FARMER/AFP via Getty Images)


Ampadu appeared to play a part in McClean’s red mist, signalling towards him during the Irishman’s initial booking. He was the subject of criticism by fellow pundit Roy Keane, who insisted the defender tried to draw a penalty in the first half.

The 20-year-old went to ground under a challenge by goalkeeper Darren Randolph following a corner on the half-hour mark. Yet, despite a penalty not being awarded, Keane believed Ampadu’s theatrics were “embarrassing”.

“(It was) disgraceful really, from Ampadu. What’s the game coming to?

“He should be ashamed of himself. Grabbing his head? I’d be embarrassed if I was him.”

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