Giovanni Trappatoni's right hand man Marco Tardelli is quietly confident that Shay Given and Aiden McGeady will be ready to face the Bulgarians on Saturday night at Croke Park.
“I think (Shay) Given will play against Bulgaria,” said Tardelli on Wednesday. “That is my opinion because I know Given. Aiden McGeady was rested because his foot is still a bit sore.”
McGeady, who is being monitored by the likes of Sevilla, Bayern Munich and Spurs, played for Celtic last weekend, should be available to train Thursday.
Man City keeper Given joined the squad Thursday and the two should be ready for the vital home game against a Bulgarian outfit shorn of star striker Dimitar Berbatov. The game kicks off at 7.45 local time.
Saturday is a busy day in Group 8, with Montenegro hosting Italy and Georgia traveling to Larnaca to take on Cyprus.