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McCarthy doubt for Ireland's World Cup qualifiers after latest injury setback with Crystal Palace

Ireland play Serbia on 24 March in their opening World Cup qualifier.

Image: PA

JAMES MCCARTHY HAS emerged as an injury doubt for Ireland ahead of the World Cup qualifiers later this month.

McCarthy, who went almost four years without playing international football due to injuries before he returned under Stephen Kenny at the end of 2020, has picked up another problem.

The midfielder was forced off in the second half of Crystal Palace’s stalemate with Man United last night after returning following a month on the sidelines with a groin issue.

3o-year-old McCarthy made his first start since 30 January against Wolves where he was also withdrawn prematurely.

Palace boss Roy Hodgson said: “Yes it’s a concern because the injury which kept him out was an injury in the groin region and he felt it again.

“It is a major concern and if it turns out he can’t play in the next couple of games, it will be a major blow for us because I thought he did very well in the 60 minutes he played.


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“He is a player we would like to see available but he is another in the course of the season who has missed a lot of games for injury or personal reasons.”

Ireland play Serbia on 24 March in their opening World Cup qualifier before taking on Luxembourg three days later.

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