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Dublin: 9°C Wednesday 23 September 2020

Curtis to return for Portsmouth tomorrow after being ruled out of Ireland squad

The attacker was replaced in the set-up by Aaron Connolly.

Portsmouth's Ronan Curtis.
Portsmouth's Ronan Curtis.
Image: EMPICS Sport

RONAN CURTIS WILL be available for Portsmouth this weekend after recovering from an injury that forced him out of the Ireland squad to play Georgia and Switzerland.

Curtis, who has won three senior caps since his debut last November, was named in Mick McCarthy’s 24-man panel for the crucial double-header of Euro 2020 qualifiers.

But while the Boys in Green are taking on Georgia tomorrow afternoon in Tbilisi, the 23-year-old attacker is likely to be in League One action for Portsmouth against Gillingham instead.

A hamstring problem caused Curtis to miss his club’s win over Doncaster Rovers last Saturday, after which the FAI announced that he had subsequently been replaced in McCarthy’s squad by Aaron Connolly.

However, the Portsmouth News reports that a scan revealed no muscle damage, which paved the way for the former Derry City player to return to training yesterday.

Pompey manager Kenny Jackett explained that they have received permission from the Ireland set-up, allowing Curtis to play tomorrow at Fratton Park.

He said: “We communicated with those at Ireland and they are going to stick with the squad they have, and are happy for Ronan to be involved this weekend.

‘There is a rule that if they get selected by an international team, they are their players for that particular week. In circumstances like this, they are not necessarily going to use him, so you are going to ask the question and the ball is in their court.

“We understand that and appreciate them allowing Ronan to play. We would always want a good relationship with national managers and physios, hopefully continuing good lines of communication.

“Our physio felt on Friday and Saturday last week that it wasn’t too bad, but a tight hamstring is enough to keep you out of a game, which it obviously did last weekend.”

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Curtis made his first start for Ireland in last month’s 3-1 friendly win against Bulgaria.

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