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Duo forced out of NI squad

Northern Ireland defenders Aaron Hughes and Ryan McGivern have been ruled out of the World Cup qualifiers against Portugal and Luxembourg.

Last Updated: 05/09/13 at 11:35 Post Comment

Ryan McGivern: Norther Ireland defender has a knee injury

Ryan McGivern: Norther Ireland defender has a knee injury

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Manager Michael O'Neill revealed on Wednesday that the duo were struggling with respective groin and knee problems.

Both players were expected to start against Portugal at Windsor Park on Friday night - with Hughes at right-back and McGivern deputising for the suspended Daniel Lafferty at left-back.

Craig Cathcart is already absent due to a knee injury and O'Neill has summoned Chris Baird and Rory McArdle as cover.

Baird is a vastly experienced player at international level and can play in a number of positions, but had not initially been considered for the double header as he is currently without a club.

The former Fulham man has been training with west London rivals Queens Park Rangers since pre-season but has yet to agree terms and has not played competitively this term.

Meanwhile, Bradford centre-back McArdle offers additional cover for Jonny Evans and Gareth McAuley.

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P

S I've always envisioned him as a Pirlo or a Scholes, though he needs some of Andy Murray's conditioning and shiny, ankle supports to keep his own from buckling under the tackles that will (inevitably) come his way. He's got the physique and low centre of gravity to flourish, but needs to make himself more resilient.

rab
Time For Another Wenger U-Turn On Wilshere?

A

s a United fan I fell I can say this without accusation of bias, Sergio Aguero is for me the only player close to Ronaldo or Messi, what goes against him is his injury record, Hazard is good in fits but doesn't give enough end product in my eyes, Tevez would be 4th for me

shea666
Suarez (Not Hazard) Is The World's Third Best

Q

uite funny because it's true. Remember when rodgers and stevie me came this close to winning the league though?

sarcasticgooner
Wenger: Arsenal Came *This* Close

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