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Dublin: 9°C Wednesday 12 May 2021
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New York Red Bulls goalkeeper Ryan Meara called up to train with Ireland

The 23-year-old will be monitored by Martin O’Neill after taking part in yesterday’s session.

Ryan Meara 9/6/2014 Meara training with Ireland yesterday. Source: Donall Farmer/INPHO

THERE WAS A new face among the Ireland squad yesterday as they trained ahead of tonight’s final summer friendly.

The Boys in Green take on Portugal at the Met Life Stadium in New Jersey (12.45am Irish time) and New York Red Bull goalkeeper Ryan Meara got his first taste of international duty after receiving an invite to take part in the session.

“We had heard about him,” said Martin O’Neill of the 23-year-old stopper. “Steve Guppy obviously keeps an eye on the MLS and he had mentioned him. Seamus (McDonagh) had known about him too so we just thought it was an opportunity as were were training there that he would come and meet us. I think he enjoyed it.

“He had a training session this morning with the senior team and Andy Roxborough, the senior manager, just came over to say thanks for that. I think it was an appreciation for us being allowed to use the training facilities too. I think he (Meara) is going to come to the game with his grandfather, I believe. But we will just keep an eye on things.

“I’d obviously need to see a bit more of him,” O’Neil added. “It was the first time I saw him live. Seamus has put a couple of DVDs in front of my nose which I haven’t had a chance to look at properly but no it’s the first time and it would be very hard to make an assessment today on a 15-minute each way game. But I’ll definitely keep an eye on him.”

Captain Robbie Keane will know Meara from the MLS was also impressed by the American-born keeper, who qualifies for Ireland through his grandfather.

“I remember getting a phone call from (Ireland U21 boss) Noel King about him two years ago,” said Keane. “He was talking about him, saying he was very interested in getting him over. He’s been very good. I think this year he hasn’t played as much. Two years ago when he did play has fantastic.”

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