Ireland’s World Cup hopes have suffered another blow with the news that Richard Dunne is out of the qualifiers against Sweden and Austria at the end of March.
Dunne has yet to play this season after picking up a groin injury in the European Championship finals last summer.
The Aston Villa defender has undergone surgery in a bid to beat the injury and will definitely miss the games away to Sweden and home to Austria.
He is also unlikely to play again this season after his latest setback according to manager Giovanni Trapattoni, set to name his squad for the double headers at a Dublin press conference on Friday.
Trapattoni has also confirmed that Everton’s Seamus Coleman and Stoke’s Marc Wilson, who both missed the recent friendly against Poland, will return to the squad for the World Cup games.
But Leicester defender Sean St Ledger is unlikely to be fit in time for the matches.