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Missing XI: The Ireland team that won't face Bulgaria

Stephen Kenny will be without several key players tomorrow night.

Matt Doherty is among the Ireland players currently missing.
Matt Doherty is among the Ireland players currently missing.
Image: Tommy Dickson/INPHO

Gavin Bazunu: This is the one position where we’ve had to cheat slightly. Kenny’s goalkeepers have all come through the international window unscathed so far, but the Ireland boss spoke previously of being tempted to call up Bazunu for these games, given his impressive form with Rochdale. As it panned out, the 18-year-old Dubliner was retained in the U21 squad instead and had to withdraw prior to their crucial qualifier against Iceland due to a hand injury.

Seamus Coleman: Coleman’s excellent form for Everton had some critics speculating that he was set for a recall to the Ireland team. Nevertheless, he had to withdraw prior to the England friendly after suffering a recurrence of a previous injury in training.

John Egan: The Sheffield United man suffered a head injury when going up for a challenge early on in the England game, and had to return to his club as a result.

Derrick Williams: Williams was part of last month’s squad, but pulled out after testing positive for Covid-19, while he was left out this time around owing to a thigh injury suffered in Blackburn’s recent game with Middlesbrough.

Matt Doherty: The 28-year-old featured in the games against England and Wales, before being ruled out of the Bulgaria encounter following a positive Covid-19 test, much to the obvious annoyance of Tottenham boss Jose Mourinho.

Enda Stevens: A knee injury meant the Sheffield United star was forced to withdraw from the Ireland squad ahead of this international window.

James McCarthy: The Crystal Palace midfielder pulled out of the Ireland squad shortly before the England game due to family reasons.

Harry Arter: The Nottingham Forest player was initially included in the squad, but didn’t get game time, after picking up a knock in training and returning to his club as a result.

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Jeff Hendrick: The 28-year-old Dubliner misses the Bulgaria game through suspension, after being sent off in the dying minutes during Sunday’s loss to Wales.

Adam Idah: After being involved against both England and Wales, the 19-year-old Cork-born forward has been ruled out of the Bulgaria fixture and consequently returned to his club, Norwich City.

Aaron Connolly: The 20-year-old Brighton striker returned to his club, after suffering an injury in training prior to the game against England.

Subs: James McClean, Jayson Molumby, Alan Browne, Callum Robinson.

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Originally published at 15.21

About the author:

Paul Fennessy

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