Ireland's qualifier against Georgia in doubt


The Republic of Ireland's opening game of the World Cup qualifying campaign away to Georgia has been placed in some doubt due to conflict in the region.

Giovanni Trapattoni's side is due to take on Georgia at the Boris Paichadze National Stadium in the capital, Tbilisi, on Saturday, September 6th in the Group 8 qualifier.

However, with today's outbreak of fighting over the disputed South Ossetia region of the country the FAI is keeping its options open and will not risk the safety of players or staff.
"We will continue to liaise with the Department of Foreign Affairs, Fifa, Uefa and the Georgian Football Association about today's reports of unrest and will keep fans informed of any updates and advice from these bodies on, as they become available," today's FAI statement read.

Fighting raged in and around the capital of Georgia's breakaway South Ossetia region today as Georgian troops, backed by tanks and warplanes, pounded separatist forces in a bid to retake the territory.

Georgia's pro-Western president, Mikheil Saakashvili said 150 Russian tanks and armoured vehicles have now entered South Ossetia.

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin told American President George W. Bush while present at the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games today that "war has started today" in the region.

Upcoming Republic of Ireland fixtures:

August 20th: Norway (friendly, away)
September 6th: Georgia (away)
September 10th: Montenegro (away)
October 15th: Cyprus (home)
November 19th: Poland (friendly, home)