Football: Evans pleads Babb's innocence
Wednesday 30 April 1997
"He was given the weekend off by us after being left out of Ireland's original squad. Is he supposed to sit at home 24 hours a day waiting for the Irish FA to ring?" Evans said.
The news will come as another embarrassment to McCarthy who knows the game in Buch- arest could make or break him as an international manager. After dropping a point at home to Iceland and a humiliating defeat, 3- 2 in Macedonia, something special is required to revive Irish hopes of qualification.
McCarthy refused to announce his team until today but did reveal that his plan will be boldly to attack Romania despite the home team's 100 per cent record in Group Eight - five straight wins without conceding a goal.
"This was always going to be our most demanding game. Romania are a good side but we will use three attacking players against them whenever we can."
The pressure building up on McCarthy was obvious yesterday when he replied to a question on his own future with an obscene eight letter word. "If you can print that then do so. I am sick and tired of being asked that question - by Irishman, Englishmen, Romanians, the lot."
McCarthy will be forced to make changes with Jason McAteer and Alan McLoughlin already out suspended. There could also be a return from the 3-5-2 to the 4-4-2 system, with Gary Kelly given a man- marking role to curb Romania's play-maker, Gheorghe Hagi. Watford's David Connolly, out for much of the season with a hamstring injury, looks set to partner Tony Cascarino up front.
Meanwhile Barcelona's Gica Popescu, who has already scored eight goals in the qualifiers, appears to be winning his battle to recover from a thigh injury and start the match for Romania.
P W D L F A Pts
Romania 5 5 0 0 19 0 15
Macedonia 6 3 1 2 18 10 10
Rep of Ireland 4 2 1 1 10 3 7
Lithuania 4 2 0 2 4 5 6
Iceland 4 0 2 2 1 7 2
Liechtenstein 5 0 0 5 2 29 0
Remaining fixtures: Today: Liechtenstein v Lithuania; Romania v Republic of Ireland. 21 May: Republic of Ireland v Liechtenstein. 7 June: Macedonia v Iceland. 11 June: Iceland v Lithuania. 19 Aug: Liechtenstein v Iceland. 20 Aug: Rep of Ireland v Lithuania; Romania v Macedonia. 6 Sept: Iceland v Rep of Ireland; Liechtenstein v Romania; Lithuania v Macedonia. 10 Sept: Romania v Iceland; Lithuania v Rep of Ireland. 11 Oct: Iceland v Liechtenstein; Rep of Ireland v Romania; Macedonia v Lithuania.
Latest in Sport
Cristiano Ronaldo: Unhappy forward is ready to quit Real Madrid, according to Angel Di Maria
Tim Wiese offered WWE role after German goalkeeper packs on muscle
Champions League: Liverpool vs Ludogorets Razgrad match preview
Hull City vs West Ham match report: Enner Valencia stars as honours shared at the KC Stadium
Cristiano Ronaldo to Manchester United: Ramon Calderon claims Real Madrid star is 'fed up'
- 1 Thailand deaths: Pair's bloodied bodies found naked on Koh Tao beach
- 2 Scottish independence: Ireland since 1919 is a lesson for Scotland in what a Yes vote means
- 4 John Travolta addresses former pilot's gay romance allegations publicly for the first time
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
The political class is doing what Hitler couldn’t – destroying Britain
Scottish independence: Nationalist leader Jim Sillars threatens pro-union companies with 'day of reckoning' after independence
Scottish independence: Yes campaign feels the heat as Alex Salmond's NHS claims come under furious attack
Portuguese academic says British are 'filthy, violent and drunk'
£23m Birmingham cycle scheme is attacked by Tory councillor for not catering to the elderly
£35000 - £50000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Senior QA Engineer (Agil...
£26000 - £28000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Digital Marketing Executive (SEO, PP...
£40000 - £50000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our retail client ...
£400 - £450 Per Annum possibly more for the right candidate: Clearwater People...