Friday 20 April 2018

Shane Long captain's Ireland as Trap rings the changes

Ireland's Shane Long celebrates after scoring the opening goal against England
Ireland's Shane Long celebrates after scoring the opening goal against England

Damian Spellman

Shane Long will captain the Republic of Ireland in tomorrow's friendly clash with Georgia.

The West Brom striker, who is suspended for Friday night's World Cup qualifier against the Faroe Islands, will wear the armband as he leads a much-changed side out at the Aviva Stadium, with Robbie Keane among the key men to be rested.

Long's elevation was confirmed by manager Giovanni Trapattoni this afternoon.

The Italian said: "He was a young player, now he's a senior. He has a heavy responsibility, as every captain.

"He must play well - and score a goal if possible - but he has also to advise the other players."

Long, 26, is one of only two men - James McCarthy, who is also suspended on Friday, is the other - to be retained from the side which started against England on Wednesday evening.

Keiren Westwood will replace David Forde in goal, while Paul McShane, Richard Keogh, Damien Delaney and the fit-again Marc Wilson will line up at the back.

Andy Keogh, Wes Hoolahan, McCarthy and James McClean will comprise the midfield quarter, while Long will be partnered in attack by Simon Cox.

Richard Dunne will start on the bench and Trapattoni intends to give him a run-out after the break in what would be his first appearance for either club or country in almost a year.

Team: Keiren Westwood; Paul McShane, Richard Keogh, Damien Delaney, Marc Wilson; Andy Keogh, Wes Hoolahan, James McCarthy, James McClean; Simon Cox, Shane Long (capt.)

Press Association

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