Republic leave McGrath out

Paul McGrath's distinguished international career could finally be over after he was yesterday left out of the Republic of Ireland's squad for the vital Group Eight World Cup qualifying tie against Romania in Bucharest on 30 April.

However, Mick McCarthy, the Irish manager, refuses to say if this is the end for the 37-year-old Derby defender. McGrath won the last of his 83 caps in the scoreless draw with Wales in Cardiff in February.

"I have spoken to Paul several times this week and he agrees with the decision as he is still suffering with injuries," McCarthy said.

"Paul can play in one game and miss the next one. In the long term he wants to clear up these injuries. The more games Paul misses, the less chance he has of playing," McCarthy said.

Earlier this month McGrath was withdrawn from the Irish squad in controversial circumstances just half an hour before the team flew to Skopje for the 3-2 defeat by Macedonia. An Achilles tendon injury was the official explanation.

The Sunderland striker Niall Quinn, just back from a cruciate ligament injury, was not named in the squad which will be reduced to 20 before travelling to Romania. But McCarthy has indicated that there could be a late call for Quinn if he shows full match fitness in forthcoming club games.

Meanwhile there is a first call-up for the 17-year-old Everton defender Richard Dunne and recalls for Gary Kelly (Leeds), Curtis Fleming (Middlesbrough), David Savage (Millwall) and David Connolly (Watford).

With both Jason McAteer (Liverpool) and Alan McLoughlin (Portsmouth) serving suspensions, McCarthy has recalled the 35-year-old Crystal Palace midfielder Ray Houghton. "It was an inept performance against Macedonia. Even a point against the Romanians would be welcome," McCarthy added.

With Romania top of the table after five games and five wins with 19 goals scored and none conceded, it promises to be an uphill task for the Irish to restore their pride in Bucharest in the hope of qualifying for a third successive World Cup finals.

A one-match suspension rules out Liverpool's Mark Kennedy for the Republic of Ireland's European Under-21 Championship qualifying tie against Romania in Bucharest on 29 April.

But the ban has not prevented Kennedy being elevated to the senior squad for the following day's World Cup tie as suspension at Under-21 level does not apply to World Cup games.

Ian Evans, the Under-21 manager, will also be without Tottenham's Stephen Carr because of suspension as the Irish youngsters attempt to build on their 4-0 victory over Macedonia earlier this month.

The debutants in the squad are Neale Fenn (Tottenham), Owen Coll (Bournemouth), Peter Gain (Tottenham), Shaun Carey (Norwich) and Tony McDonnell of UCD, the only League of Ireland representative.

REPUBLIC OF IRELAND SQUAD (v Romania, Group Eight World Cup qualifying tie in Bucharest, 30 April): A Kelly (Sheff Utd), Given (Blackburn), Irwin (Man Utd), Cunningham (Wimbledon), Breen (Coventry City), Harte (Leeds Utd), Fleming (Middlesbrough), Kenna (Blackburn), G Kelly (Leeds Utd), Phelan (Everton), Dunne (Everton), Staunton (Aston Villa), Houghton (Crystal Palace), Keane (Man Utd), Townsend (Aston Villa), Savage (Millwall), Moore (Middlesbrough), Kennedy (Liverpool) D Kelly (Sunderland), Connolly (Watford), O'Neill (Norwich), Goodman (Wimbledon), Cascarino (Nancy).

REPUBLIC OF IRELAND SQUAD (v Romania in the European Under-21 Championship qualifying tie in Bucharest, 29 April): Murphy (Wimbledon), O'Connor (Huddersfield), Worrell (Blackburn), Quinn (Crystal Palace), Maher (Tottenham), Finnan (Notts County), Boland (Coventry), Farrelly (Aston Villa), Kilbine (Preston), Fenn (Tottenham), Foley (Wolves), Delap (Carlisle), Mahon (Tranmere), Inman (Peterborough), Coll (Bournemouth), McDonnell (UCD), Gain (Tottenham), Carey (Norwich).

Arts and Entertainment
Brendan O'Carroll as Agnes Brown in the 2014 Mrs Brown's Boys Christmas special
tvCould Mrs Brown's Boys have taken lead for second year?
Arts and Entertainment
Jack O'Connell stars as Louis Zamperini in Angelina Jolie's Unbroken
film review... even if Jack O'Connell is excellent
News
news
News
peopleIt seems you can't silence Katie Hopkins, even on Christmas Day...
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Wolf (Nathan McMullen), Ian (Dan Starky), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi), Clara (Jenna Coleman), Santa Claus (Nick Frost) in the Doctor Who Christmas Special (BBC/Photographer: David Venni)
tvOur review of the Doctor Who Christmas Special
Life and Style
fashion
Arts and Entertainment
Japanese artist Megumi Igarashi showing a small mascot shaped like a vagina
art
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
tvChristmas special reviewed
Arts and Entertainment
Jenna Coleman as Clara Oswald in the Doctor Who Christmas special
tvForget the rumours that Clara Oswald would be quitting the Tardis
Arts and Entertainment
tv
News
The Queen delivers her Christmas message
newsTwitter reacts to Her Majesty's Christmas Message
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Ashdown Group: Senior Marketing Executive- City of London, Old Street

£40000 - £43000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Senior Marketing Executiv...

Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager

£40000 - £43000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: An international organisa...

Ashdown Group: Internal Recruiter -Rugby, Warwickshire

£25000 - £30000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Internal Recruiter -Rugby, Warwicksh...

Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager/Marketing Controller (Financial Services)

£70000 - £75000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager/Marketi...

Day In a Page

A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

Christmas without hope

Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

The 'Black Museum'

After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

Chilly Christmas

Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all