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Football: Kinsella given leave to play for Charlton

MARK KINSELLA learned yesterday that he will be available for Charlton Athletic's First Division fixture with Grimsby Town next week after all.

Kinsella was expected to miss the Blundell Park game because it coincided with Ireland's Euro 2000 play-off against Turkey. However, the Charlton captain is suspended for the first leg and Mick McCarthy, the Ireland manager, has released the midfielder to play for Charlton before re-joining for the second leg on 14 November.

Alan Curbishley, Charlton's manager, said: "I'm pleased with the way things have turned out because Mark is very important to us. He will link up with the Ireland team the day after the Grimsby match." Kinsella underlined his importance to Charlton during their midweek win at Crewe after returning from a knee injury that ended a run of 110 consecutive League matches.

Curbishley, however, is unhappy he will lose his goalkeeper Dean Kiely to Ireland. "It's ridiculous the game can't be called off. It's something the Nationwide League might have to look into because with the amount of foreign players arriving it will only get worse."

Turkey named a 21-man squad yesterday for the first leg. Galatasaray's striker Saffet Akyuz has been called up even though he rarely plays for his club after being pushed aside by Hakan Sukur.

Squad, Digest, page 27