O’Dea will need to resolve his future at club level after Euro 2012 after his hopes of sealing a permanent deal with Leeds United were dashed when he was sent back to parent club Celtic a few weeks before his loan deal at Elland Road was due to expire.
It may be that Bhoys boss Neil Lennon will find space for him in his line-up next season as O’Dea showed signs that he was maturing during his stint in the Championship, with the lapses in concentration that marred his initial performances becoming less frequent for this powerful Dubliner.
His rise to the top has been a little slower than many were predicting after he turned in a stunning Champions League performance against a rampant Kaka and AC Milan at the San Siro back in 2007. The evening ultimately ended in defeat for Celtic, but O’Dea looked to be a star in the making.
His Ireland career has been something of a stop-start affair and he will head to Euro 2012 as a replacement centre-back for Giovanni Trapattoni’s first-choice picks.