Injured Hoolahan declines call-up

 

Soccer:Norwich City’s Wes Hoolahan has been forced to turn down a rare call up to the Republic of Ireland squad because of an "Achilles tendon flare-up".

Hoolahan was given the call by Giovanni Trapattoni today ahead of the international friendly against Serbia in Belgrade on Wednesday, after Darron Gibson sustained a muscle tear in his thigh during Everton’s pre-season training.

However, a statement from the FAI this evening said he was unable to answer the manager's call because his injury requires rest before the start of the season. No replacement for the former Shelbourne midfielder was named.

Hoolahan has spent years in the international wilderness, having been continuously overlooked by the Italian manager since his one and only cap against Colombia in Craven Cottage in 2008.

For the Italian, who is stubbornly wedded to his system, Hoolahan never quite fit in, but after such brutal exposure of rigid tactics in Poland, it briefly looked like the 30-year-old might get a chance to impress.

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