Tuesday 17 October 2017

O'Neill could award first caps

Billy McKay, left, has impressed for Inverness this season
Billy McKay, left, has impressed for Inverness this season

Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill has called up five uncapped players for next month's friendly against Malta.

Striker Kyle Lafferty, who is suspended for the next World Cup qualifier against Russia, has been left out so in-form Inverness striker Billy McKay will hope to be given a chance up front after being included.

Tranmere forward Adam McGurk has been called up for the first time while 18-year-old Liverpool winger Ryan McLaughlin and Hull defender Alex Bruce, who has previously played for Ireland, will be hoping to win their first caps.

Uncapped Bury goalkeeper Trevor Carson is also included for the February 6 game, but Fulham defender Chris Baird joins Lafferty on the sidelines as he is also suspended for the Russia game.

Northern Ireland squad to face Malta in friendly at Ta'qali National Stadium on February 6: R Carroll (Olympiacos), A Mannus (St Johnstone), T Carson (Bury), A Hughes (Fulham), R McGivern (Manchester City, on loan at Hibernian), J Evans (Man Utd), C Cathcart (Blackpool), G McAuley ( West Brom).

A Bruce (Hull), D Lafferty (Burnley), S Davis (captain, Southampton), O Norwood (Huddersfield), C Evans (Hull), N McGinn (Aberdeen), C Brunt (West Brom), S Ferguson (Newcastle), R McLaughlin (Liverpool), D Shiels (Rangers), W Grigg (Walsall), J Ward (Derby), B McKay (Inverness), P McCourt (Celtic), A McGurk (Tranmere).

Press Association

Independent.ie Comments Facility

INM has taken the decision to remove the commenting facility on its online platform Independent.ie to minimise the legal risk to our business that arises from Ireland's draconian libel awards system.

We continue to look forward to receiving comments through direct email contact or via social media, some of which may still be featured on the website Independent.ie


Also in this section