James McClean targets return in time for October internationals
Robbie Brady, James McCarthy and Sean Maguire all remain touch and go to return
Ireland’s James McClean hopes to be fit for the Nations League fixtures in October. Photograph: Andrew Boyers/Reuters
James McClean says that he hopes to be back for Ireland’s games against Denmark and Wales next month despite a broken wrist which it was initially feared might sideline the 29 year-old until towards the end of next month.
“They say six weeks but I’m hoping for a lot quicker,” the Stoke City midfielder told eir Sport. “I’m 10-11 days post-surgery so we’re getting there”
The Derryman was due to resume non-contact training with his club this morning (Monday) but is several weeks away from competitive action and may need to feature in the Bolton or Norwich games at the start of next month in order to avoid a clash with his club over joining up with Martin O’Neill’s squad.
The former Derry City star, who broke his writs in what he describes as an “everyday” training ground collision during the Ireland squad’s preparations for the recent Wales match, is one of several ongoing concerns for the manager with the likes of Robbie Brady, James McCarthy and Sean Maguire all currently touch and go for the Nations League group games.
They may yet come too soon for all three despite the players each having taken some part in training at their clubs over the past few days. Everton and Burnley seem to be targeting returns to action around the middle of the month for McCarthy and Brady respectively and if the pair have not clearly established their fitness before the break then there is bound to be pressure on them to skip the international games.
Maguire has been back in light training for a while at Preston but is still reckoned to be a couple of weeks away from full fitness. Seamus Coleman, on the other hand, could come back into the reckoning for Everton as early as this weekend when they travel to Arsenal and barring a major setback the Irish captain should be available to O’Neill.