Saturday 24 February 2018

Ireland facing another injury blow as Ciaran Clark forced off during Newcastle defeat

Colin Young

Ireland have suffered another potential setback to their preparations ahead of the crucial World Cup qualifier against Wales.

Newcastle United defender Ciaran Clark was forced off just over an hour into his side's shock 3-1 home defeat to Fulham yesterday.

The former Aston Villa defender,  who has been a virtual ever-present under Rafa Benitez this season,  will have scans on a knee injury,  the Newcastle manager confirmed last night.

Benitez said: 'He got a knock so we withdrew him as a precaution. We don't know how serious it is yet of course so we will wait and see. '

Clark and Brighton defender Shane Duffy have become Martin O'Neill's first choice central defensive partnership in this qualifying campaign.

But Duffy is already ruled out of the Wales game after he suffered a broken metatarsal which required surgery last week.

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