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Ireland keen to finish season on high
Published : 20 Apr 2011 16:00:01
Midfielder Stephen Ireland is desperate to repay Newcastle's faith in him after belatedly making his debut.The 24-year-old Irishman has been a frustrated bystander for much of the past two and a half months after arriving from Aston Villa on loan in January with a knee injury and then picking up a thigh strain as he neared full fitness.However, he is delighted to have the chance to impress Newcastle boss Alan Pardew, who has challenged him to prove that he could have a long-term future at St James' Park.Ireland said: "It's been really frustrating for me. I have not really had a manager who has wanted me to play and I have felt like an outcast for a while."It's nice to be treated normally for once. I haven't had that in a while."I have come here now and even through my injuries, they kept telling me, 'Listen, it's not a problem, just get yourself right'. The loyalty they have shown me, I am going to repay that as much as I can."