Published Wednesday, 05 September 2012
Martin O'Neill is hoping to get his Sunderland players back fit and well. (© Getty)
Black Cats new signing Adam Johnson is among those called up to the England squad and O'Neill has admitted that the privilege can be a double-edged sword.
"I would prefer that nobody played during that break, but I am well aware that international football is predominantly very, very strong now," O'Neill said.
"It takes precedence over almost everything at the moment.
But O'Neill was also quick to hold that it is great to get to play for your country and said he felt Johnson deserved the chance.
"Regardless of whether he signed for us or not, he deserved that on his performance in the friendly game [against Italy], albeit it was a friendly match," he added.
As a club manager, all you do is just worry for about a fortnight until the players come back.
Midfielder David Meyler is also on international duty, getting a chance to debut with the Republic of Ireland side in their World Cup qualifier against Kazakhstan after Darron Gibson refused to travel.
Meyler has struggled with knee injuries and is now hoping to get his career back on track.
"I don't want to be called up and never get the call again," he admitted.
"So I have to take every training session like it's my last and if I get the opportunity to play in either of the two games I have to make an impression."
Sunderland are back in action on Saturday 15 September, when O'Neill will find himself up against a Liverpool side led by another Northern Ireland man - Carnlough's Brendan Rodgers.
While it's still very early days as far as the Premiership campaign is concerned, Liverpool currently languish in 18th place in the table, while Sunderland are 13th.
It would perhaps be the Anfield side who would be considered unluckiest if hit by injury woes though, as - after fairly disastrous transfer negotiations during the summer window - their strike force has been left seriously lacking.