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O'Shea aims to get back in the swing

JOHN O'SHEA'S ankle coped favourably with the rigours of his golf swing yesterday, but it will be how it reacts to full training that will be of most concern to Ireland boss Giovanni Trapattoni.

The Sunderland defender and Irish team-mate Shay Given will find out this morning if they can take part in full training as Trapattoni's Ireland press ahead with Euro 2012 preparations.

The first-choice pair will be assessed before training in Montecatini. Medical advice earlier in the week suggested that Given (knee) and O'Shea (ankle) should be fine to resume at this juncture, but they still need the all-clear.

Trapattoni wants the duo to play in next Monday's friendly with Hungary in Budapest in the final warm-up game before the Euro 2012 opener against Croatia on Sunday week.

Trap gave the players a day off yesterday after their exertions in Tuesday night's comfortable win over a local selection and most of them hit the fairways at the local golf club.

The day also allowed Kevin Foley to wish farewell to the squad before leaving the camp following Trapattoni's shock decision to omit him from the final 23 and include Paul McShane instead.

There was an option available for Foley to stick around as a 24th man, but he refused the offer, after admitting that he felt "betrayed" by Trapattoni. The Irish boss was on hand to say goodbye to the player as he left the team base at 10.30am, accompanied by two FAI staff, but the scars of his demotion will take time to heal.

Unless, of course, O'Shea (left) fails to prove his fitness before Hungary, in which case Foley will be called back immediately.

Irish Independent