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O'Neill hands out three debuts in Ireland XI team to face Celtic

The Boys in Green take on the Hoops in Scott Brown’s testimonial this afternoon.

Left to right: Callum Robinson, Jon Walters, Darragh Lenihan and Sean Maguire.
Left to right: Callum Robinson, Jon Walters, Darragh Lenihan and Sean Maguire.
Image: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

MARTIN O’NEILL HAS named an inexperienced starting line-up for Scott Brown’s testimonial.

An Ireland XI face Celtic at Parkhead this afternoon (2pm kick-off) in the first of a series of summer friendlies — with France in Paris next on May 28 before a fixture at home to the US on 2 June.

Blackburn Rovers pair Darragh Lenihan and Derrick Williams will both make their Ireland debuts along with Millwall midfielder Shaun Williams.

The uncapped Graham Burke, Enda Stevens, Callum Robinson and Conor O’Malley are on the bench.

Seamus Coleman captains the visiting side, while Jon Walters and James McClean provide the experience in an otherwise experimental team. Bristol City winger Callum O’Dowda makes a welcome return after ankle surgery kept him out of March’s friendly with Turkey, meanwhile.

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Celtic v Republic of Ireland - Scott Brown Testimonial Match - Celtic Park James McClean poses with fans at Celtic Park before kick-off. Source: Jeff Holmes

Brown is the only player who started in yesterday’s Scottish Cup final — as the Hoops sealed their second consecutive domestic treble with a 2-0 victory over Motherwell — to be named by manager Brendan Rodgers.

Ex-Celtic defender Charlie Mulgrew, now of Blackburn Rovers, features at the back for his former employers, while club legend Henrik Larsson is among the substitutes.

CELTIC: De Vries, Hendry, Simunovic, Mulgrew, Miller, Brown (c), Kouassi, Johnston, Roberts, Sinclair, Griffiths. Subs: Gordon, Tierney, Boyata, Ajer, Lustig, Ntcham, Armstrong, Rogic, McGregor, Dembele, Forrest, Aitchison, Deas, Church, R Hendry, Larsson.


IRELAND XI: Doyle, Coleman (c), Egan, Lenihan, D Williams, O’Dowda, Browne, S Williams, McClean, Walters, Maguire. Subs: O’Malley, Stevens, Doherty, Burke, Cunningham, Robinson.

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