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Gavin Bazunu on course to start in Armenia despite back issue

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Gavin Bazunu in Armenia

Gavin Bazunu in Armenia

Gavin Bazunu in Armenia

A back issue for Gavin Bazunu has complicated preparations for tomorrow's UEFA Nations League opener in Armenia but Stephen Kenny is upbeat about the prospects of his first choice keeper being 100 percent fit.

Bazunu sat out part of training in Yerevan on Thursday, but he joined Caoimhin Kelleher and Mark Travers to take a full part in the open section of the pre-match training session in Yerevan.

"He hurt his back, he seems to be okay," said Kenny today. "I think we will have everyone available for selection."

Liverpool number two Kelleher would be primed to step in if Bazunu missed out, with the Corkman lining out for March's friendly with Lithuania when the decision was made to rest the Dubliner.

Kenny faced more queries about the weather during his media duties with the FAI hopeful that water breaks will be permitted.

Under UEFA rules, temperatures need to hit 32 degrees to make the recharging period mandatory but it's at the discretion of the referee to introduce them if he feels it is necessary. It is forecast to fall just short of that.

The Irish camp are expected to make their case to the Romanian officials.

Kenny did receive good news from officialdom earlier this week when Josh Cullen was cleared to play after it emerged there was an administrative misunderstanding that led to the belief he was banned.

The Ireland boss was asked if Cullen would definitely play and was guarded in his response.

He had been making plans without Cullen and is aware of the need to manage minutes across a four game window with the Anderlecht player coming off the back of a busy club campaign.

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However, the 26-year-old has grown into a very important player and was missed in the Lithuania friendly.


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