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Noel King wants Ireland Under-21s to go the distance

Updated: Tuesday, 04 Mar 2014 20:30 | Comments

Noel King
Noel King

Republic of Ireland Under-21 boss Noel King insists his side will not lose sight of their objectives when they host Montenegro in a critical U21 Championship qualifying round match at Tallaght Stadium tomorrow at 3pm.

Ireland need to secure three points to stay in with a chance of reaching the play-offs. Germany have already topped the group and the Irish are level on eight points with second-placed Montenegro, who have one game less played.

King's side will travel to Germany for their final group game on September 5 and the Irish boss wants to be still in the hunt for second spot when that fixture is played.

"We want to keep the journey going to the end of the campaign. We always want to win every time we play but we need to ensure we pick up the three points to keep things going in the competition," said King.

"We've trained well over the past two days. Everybody is in good shape and there's a nice buzz about the place. We brought in five younger players into this group and everybody is looking to impress.

"Everybody knows Montenegro are a good footballing nation who have caused trouble to everybody they've played. However we drew 0-0 out there and we created enough chances to perhaps have won the game.

"I'm expecting a tough game but we're looking for a good all round performance and a good spirit. If we get that we will have enough about us to win this game."

Shamrock Rovers defender Luke Byrne has been drafted in for Bradford City defender Carl McHugh, who had originally replaced the injured Callum Reilly but could not shake off a knock suffered at the weekend.

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