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Martin O'Neill names provisional Ireland squad

Updated: Sunday, 24 Aug 2014 14:50 | Comments

Shane Long got on the scoresheet against Oman in the Republic of Ireland's 4-1 win over the Arab state at Craven Cottage in September 2012
Shane Long got on the scoresheet against Oman in the Republic of Ireland's 4-1 win over the Arab state at Craven Cottage in September 2012

Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill has named a provisional 36-man squad for the upcoming international encounters against Oman and Georgia.

Ireland will take on Oman in a friendly fixture at Aviva Stadium in Dublin on Wednesday, 3 September before opening their Euro 2016 qualification campaign against Georgia in Tbilisi on Sunday, 7 September.

There are no uncapped players in O'Neill's latest squad, but he will also be without veteran defender Richard Dunne, who announced his retirement from international football during the summer.

The party includes former first-choice goalkeeper Keiren Westwood, who has returned to club action after joining Sheffield Wednesday following his release by Sunderland at the end of the last campaign.

O'Neill has confirmed that Los Angeles Galaxy striker Robbie Keane, who was an target last night in the MLS, will remain his captain.

Ireland, who failed to qualify for last summer's World Cup finals when they finished fourth in their group behind Germany, Sweden and Austria, have been handed a tough challenge once again this time around.

They have been drawn into Group D with world champions Germany, Scotland, Poland, Georgia and Gibraltar.

O'Neill, assisted by Roy Keane, took over in November last year and his seven friendly matches to date have brought one win, three draws and three defeats, although the manager deliberately chose challenging opposition - Turkey, Italy, Costa Rica and Portugal - for the end-of-season programme.

He said: "I have had the opportunity to work with the players since last November, and we are well prepared as we embark upon the first of our qualifiers next month.

"Oman will provide a good test to start our trip before we travel to Tbilisi. We are focused on the task in hand, and look forward to the challenges ahead of us."

Republic of Ireland: David Forde (Millwall), Keiren Westwood, (Sheffield Wednesday), Darren Randolph (Birmingham), Rob Elliot (Newcastle), Richard Keogh (Derby), Marc Wilson (Stoke), Seamus Coleman (Everton), John O'Shea (Sunderland), Alex Pearce, Stephen Kelly (both Reading), Paul McShane (Hull), Damien Delaney (Crystal Palace), Joey O'Brien (West Ham), Shane Duffy, James McCarthy (both Everton), Jeff Hendrick (Derby), Ciaran Clark (Aston Villa), Stephen Ward (Burnley), Glenn Whelan (Stoke), Darron Gibson (Everton), Andy Reid (Nottingham Forest), Aiden McGeady (Everton), Anthony Pilkington (Cardiff), James McClean (Wigan), Robbie Brady, Stephen Quinn, David Meyler (all Hull), Wes Hoolahan (Norwich), Robbie Keane (Los Angeles Galaxy), Shane Long (Southampton), Daryl Murphy (Ipswich), Jon Walters (Stoke), Kevin Doyle (Wolves), Anthony Stokes (Celtic), Simon Cox (Reading), Conor Sammon (Ipswich).

Martin O'Neill


 

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