Sport Soccer

Monday 20 November 2017

O'Neill to run the rule over rising Watford star Murray

Irish manager Martin O'Neill will travel to Watford but his assistant, Roy Keane, may have a wasted journey to Hull if David Meyler fails to recover from a knee injury
Irish manager Martin O'Neill will travel to Watford but his assistant, Roy Keane, may have a wasted journey to Hull if David Meyler fails to recover from a knee injury
Sean Murray in action for Watford
Daniel McDonnell

Daniel McDonnell

MARTIN O'NEILL will travel to Watford tomorrow to check on the progress of rising Irish star Sean Murray in their London derby with QPR.

The highly rated U-21 international midfielder has grown into an important player for the Hornets this season after being disappointed with his lack of opportunities last term, and starred in their 4-0 win over Millwall on St Stephen's Day.

Ireland U-21 boss Noel King is a fan of Murray and contemplated drafting him into the senior squad during his time as interim boss.

O'Neill will take the opportunity to look at the 20-year-old in the flesh as Watford, who narrowly missed out on promotion last term, seek to move closer to the play-off places under new Italian boss Giuseppe Sannino, who replaced Gianfranco Zola earlier this month.

The fixture will also give the Irish management a further opportunity to check on the wellbeing of QPR defender Richard Dunne. QPR are hoping to avoid a third consecutive defeat with O'Neill present for their loss to Leicester last weekend and Roy Keane in attendance as they suffered a 2-0 reverse at the hands of Nottingham Forest on Stephen's Day.

Dunne wants to be a part of O'Neill's plans but has admitted he must discuss the issue with the Derry man.

Meanwhile, Keane may have a wasted journey to Hull today for the match with Fulham as he seeks to monitor the progress of David Meyler. Keane (above) returned to his native Cork to bring Meyler to Sunderland but he had left the club by the time the midfielder was ready for first-team action.

The 24-year-old has become a regular in the Tigers side but he is unlikely to shake off a knee problem he sustained in the 3-2 defeat to Manchester United, a game in which scored.

Robbie Brady could come back into contention after missing out with a groin problem but he might have to settle for a place on the bench if he does recover.

Paul McShane is on standby if former Ireland international Alex Bruce fails to overcome a calf problem. Dubliner Stephen Quinn remains on the sidelines.

Tomorrow, Keane will travel to Wigan where he is hoping to see James McClean figure against Burnley. In-form Dubliner Chris McCann could also feature for the hosts against his former club. Irish pair Keith Treacy and Kevin Long are set to be on the visitors' bench.

Elsewhere, young Everton defender Shane Duffy has extended his loan stay at Yeovil until the end of the season. The Irish U-21 international from Derry has made a good impression during his stint with the Championship new boys.

Irish Independent

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