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McCarthy and Wilson injuries upset O'Neill's Scottish plans

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Ireland manager Martin O'Neill

Ireland manager Martin O'Neill

SPORTSFILE

James McCarthy (L) suffered a hamstring injury with Everton

James McCarthy (L) suffered a hamstring injury with Everton

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Ireland manager Martin O'Neill

MARTIN O'NEILL will find out today if he will have to plan for Friday's crucial Euro 2016 qualifier in Scotland without the services of James McCarthy and Marc Wilson.

The pair suffered hamstring injuries in action with their respective clubs yesterday and will learn the seriousness of their problems after undergoing assessment.

Wilson hobbled off in the first half of Stoke's win at Spurs, while McCarthy lasted the duration of Everton's draw with Sunderland but cramped up at the end, aggravating the problem that forced him out of Ireland's draw in Germany last month.

"It is a bit of a concern because he had the same injury a few weeks back against Manchester United and it is exactly the same area," said his club boss Roberto Martinez.

"We hope it is more fatigue than a soft-tissue problem. We'll assess him in the morning and hope he's fully fit so he can join them."

DILEMMA

With Glenn Whelan working hard to defy original medical assessments, O'Neill will face a midfield dilemma if McCarthy is unavailable for the much anticipated return to his native city of Glasgow.

Wilson has struck up an effective partnership with John O'Shea at the heart of the back four and Richard Keogh could come into contention.

Scotland manager Gordon Strachan was also given a headache by that game with Phil Bardsley leaving the pitch with a setback before Wilson's premature exit.

Ireland's Jon Walters nabbed the winning goal and will arrive in good spirits along with striking rival Shane Long, who got off the mark in the Premier League for Southampton with a brace on Saturday.

O'Neill will reveal his trimmed-down squad today when he receives a fitness update. Back-up keeper Keiren Westwood is another player with a question mark hanging over his participation.

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