Clough reckons Derby County defender Keogh will get another chance with Republic of Ireland
NIGEL Clough believes Derby County skipper Richard Keogh will get another chance at international level.
Keogh was left out of the Republic of Ireland squad for their World Cup qualifiers against Sweden last night and Austria on Tuesday.
But Clough has told the 26-year-old defender not to be too downhearted.
"We are surprised he is not involved, we have to say," said Clough.
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"I know two of our players, Conor Sammon and Jeff Hendrick have got in but I think the manager (Giovanni Trapattoni) tends to stick by his tried and trusted players a lot, so we understand from that point of view.
"But I don't think Richard should lose heart for the future."
Keogh made his senior international debut last month when he came on as a late substitute in a 2-0 victory over Poland at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin.
His Derby team-mates Sammon and Hendrick also earned their first caps against Poland, and they have kept their places in the squad.
Keogh spoke to the Derby Telegraph earlier this week of his disappointment at being left out.
"I think it's human nature to be a little bit disappointed, I'm not going to lie about that. Playing for my country was probably the proudest moment of my career," he said.
Keogh responded with a man-of-the-match display in Derby's 2-1 victory over Leicester City at Pride Park last Saturday.
"Richard just needs to keep playing as he did against Leicester, I thought he was outstanding," said Clough.
"I think he would have done that anyway but it was a nice little reminder to anyone watching.
"He's still got a chance of making the Republic of Ireland squad in the future."
The centre-back has been ever-present for Derby since his move from Coventry City last summer.