Trapattoni to learn today of Coleman's availability for Poland match
The FAI expect to hear today whether Séamus Coleman is likely to be fit enough to join up with the Republic of Ireland squad for Wednesday week’s game against Poland. The Everton full-back, who was laid up through the Christmas and New Year period is expecting the results of a scan on a groin problem sustained in Monday night’s Premier League game against Southampton.
The Donegal man limped out of that game after 56 minutes and his absence from the international would be a blow to Giovanni Trapattoni as he struggles to prepare the defensive side of his team for the crucial World Cup qualifiers against Sweden and Austria in late March.
Trapattoni has already lost Darren O’Dea since naming his squad on Monday, after Toronto requested that their 25-year-old Irish defender be allowed to stay on with the squad as it prepares for the new MLS season – Reading’s Alex Pearce has been called in as a replacement.
There was some good news for Trapattoni yesterday, however, as Paul Lambert again suggested that Richard Dunne could be back in first-team action for Aston Villa over the next week or so, although the Dubliner is unlikely to be risked in tonight’s FA Cup game against Millwall.
Any sort of game time for the Irishman in the league games against Newcastle or Everton next week would open the door to him travelling home for the friendly with Poland.
Trapattoni has said that even if he wasn’t to risk playing the big centre half he would welcome the opportunity to assess his progress in training but Villa may, in the circumstances, actually be happy to have the player get a bit more action under his belt after he seeks to recover his match fitness following what has been a very long lay-off.
The FAI, meanwhile, has announced that ticketholders for the Poland game will also be able to attend the under-21 friendly against the Netherlands at lunchtime that day in Tallaght for free.
Details of how the offer will be administered have yet to be confirmed but it should significantly boost the attendance for what already looks an attractive game.
Noel King will announce his squad for the game this morning although the inclusion of the likes of Mark O’Brien (Derby), Frankie Sutherland (on loan to Portsmouth from QPR) and Callum Reilly (Birmingham City) has already been signalled by their respective clubs.
The Dutch have named a squad that includes many well-regarded prospects including Ajax forward Jody Lukoki and PSV midfielder Peter van Ooijen, both of whom have featured for their clubs in European competition this year.
Bristol City, meanwhile, are set to sign former under-21 international Brendan Molony from Nottingham Forest with Seán O’Driscoll reported to be keen to secure the full-back he worked with during his time at the City Ground ahead of tomorrow’s game against Ipswich.