Jon Walters issues statement on departure of Martin O'Neill
"I didn't expect Martin to leave."
Republic of Ireland forward Jon Walters has spoken out on Martin O'Neill's departure from the Ireland set-up, announced earlier on Wednesday.
Walters played a vital role in the Ireland squad under Martin O'Neill, bagging two goals in the second leg off the Euro 2016 play-off against Bosnia & Herzegovina.
In a statement, published on his social media, Walters wrote: "I didn’t expect Martin to leave as manager. Although we’ve had a very difficult year in terms of results, I’ll balance that with the amount of players that have just started their international career.
I would’ve been very confident in qualifying under Martin and still am with the group of players we have. On a personal note I have the upmost respect for Martin as he is and always has been fantastic for me."
The FAI announced earlier on Wednesday that it had parted ways with O'Neill and his assistant Roy Keane by mutual agreement.