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McClean and Green called into Ireland squad for Czech friendly

“Absolutely buzzin and honoured to be called up to represent my country,” Sunderland winger James McClean says on his first international nod.

Sunderland's James McClean (file photo).
Sunderland's James McClean (file photo).
Image: INPHO/Ryan Byrne

GIOVANNI TRAPATTONI HAS added James McClean and Paul Green to his Republic of Ireland squad for next week’s friendly against the Czech Republic.

The decision to call up the pair brings Trapattoni’s squad to a total of 26 players for the game in the Aviva Stadium on 29 February.

Both players will join up with the squad on Sunday, the FAI confirmed this morning.

“Absolutely buzzin and honoured to be called up to represent my country,” McClean tweeted. “Best feeling there is.”

McClean, 22, joins Everton defender Shane Duffy as the only other uncapped player in the Ireland squad. Duffy was added to the squad last week as a replacement for the injured Richard Dunne, who fractured his clavicle while in action for Aston Villa.

Trapattoni’s decision not to include McClean in his initial squad raised eyebrows, with many supporters feeling that the winger’s recent performances for Sunderland were good enough to earn him a first international call-up.

McClean represented Northern Ireland at underage level, but declared his intention to switch south of the border last year. FIFA officially signed off on the Derry native’s international move earlier this month, freeing him to join the Republic as they prepare for their trip to Poland and Ukraine this summer.

Green, 28, last appeared in a friendly against Uruguay last March, but did not feature in the remainder of Ireland’s qualification campaign.

The Derby County midfielder has nine international caps.

Republic of Ireland squad (v Czech Republic): Given, Westwood, Forde, O’Shea, Kelly, Ward, Duffy, St. Ledger, O’Dea, Foley, Whelan, McCarthy, Coleman, Andrews, Green, Fahey, Gibson, Duff, McGeady, Hunt, McClean, Keane, Doyle, Long, Cox, Walters.

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