Espanyol boss Quique Sanchez Flores turns down move to Stoke City

Martin O'Neill was unhappy with some of the criticism he received in the aftermath of the Denmark loss.                     Image Niall Carson

Martin O'Neill was unhappy with some of the criticism he received in the aftermath of the Denmark loss. Image Niall Carson

In recent days, it has been claimed that Stoke were prepared to give Flores a five-year contract in order to return to English football, having previously managed Watford.

Meanwhile Keane and O'Neill attended the Soccer Writers' Association of Ireland Awards in Dublin and Friday night and of course declined to comment.

Rumours tweeted by Guillem Balague were actually proved right, as Flores announced his intention to stay put in a press conference earlier today.

But the national team gaffer refused to take any questions from the media.

It would be more hard to extract Flores from Espanyol, however, although he is said to be tempted by the offer and would enjoy the opportunity to go back to the Premier League, having managed Watford in 2015-16. Keane will nearly certainly join O'Neill at the Bet365 Stadium if Stoke can agree terms with them.

"The fact is that I am here".

"These are situations that happen and they cannot be avoided". I am absolutely happy with my situation, I do not have to explain anything else.

"It happened three weeks ago with Gerard Moreno, but we have to think that we are happy with Espanyol".

O'Neill has worked alongside Keane in the Ireland job since 2013 and the pair helped the nation reach Euro 2016, while just missing out on qualification to this summer's World Cup after losing a two-legged play-off against Denmark in November.

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