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James Talbot drafted into Ireland squad for World Cup qualifiers

The Bohemians goalkeeper is to replace Mark Travers for the games against Portugal, Azerbaijan and Serbia.

Bohemians goalkeeper James Talbot celebrates after yesterday's FAI Cup win over Shamrock Rovers.
Bohemians goalkeeper James Talbot celebrates after yesterday's FAI Cup win over Shamrock Rovers.
Image: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

REPUBLIC OF IRELAND manager Stephen Kenny has called James Talbot of Bohemians into his squad.

The goalkeeper is being drafted in ahead of three World Cup qualifiers, the first of which will see the Boys in Green face Portugal in Faro on Wednesday evening (7.45pm).

News of the call-up was confirmed this afternoon by Talbot’s club, with the 24-year-old set to take the place of Mark Travers.

An unspecified illness brought an end to Travers’ run of four consecutive Championship starts for Bournemouth as he was forced to sit out Saturday’s goalless draw with Hull City.

Talbot, who joined Bohs ahead of the 2019 season after being released by Sunderland, helped the Gypsies reach the quarter-finals of the FAI Cup yesterday with a 2-1 win over Shamrock Rovers.

The Dubliner first featured in an Ireland senior squad under Mick McCarthy in June 2019, when he was an unused substitute for European Championship qualifiers against Gibraltar and Denmark.

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Talbot will join Gavin Bazunu of Portsmouth (on loan from Manchester City) and Liverpool’s Caoimhín Kelleher as Stephen Kenny’s goalkeeping options.

Having fallen to third in the pecking order of goalkeepers at West Ham United, Darren Randolph has been omitted from an Ireland squad that is also gearing up for home games against Azerbaijan (Saturday) and Serbia (Tuesday week).

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Paul Dollery

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