German midfield test excites Republic of Ireland's David Meyler

David Meyler hopes to a competitive match in central midfield for the first time for the Republic of Ireland against Germany
David Meyler hopes to a competitive match in central midfield for the first time for the Republic of Ireland against Germany

European Championship qualifying Group D

Venue:
Aviva Stadium, Dublin
Date:
Thursday, 8 October
Kick-off:
19:45 BST
Coverage:
Updates BBC Radio 5 live and text commentary on BBC Sport website

David Meyler is backing himself to "get the better of" German legend Bastian Schweinsteiger if he is picked to start for the Republic of Ireland in Dublin.

Meyler hopes to go head-to-head with the World Cup winner in Thursday's Euro 2016 tie in the Aviva Stadium.

Injuries and suspensions could see the Hull midfielder given a rare start.

"If you are given an opportunity to play against him [Schweinsteiger], it's just me v him and I have got to get on top of him," said Meyler.

Meyler, 26, played at right-back in the 1-1 draw with the Germans in Gelsenkirchen almost a year ago in place of the injured Seamus Coleman.

The Everton defender is expected to miss out again through injury and did not train on Wednesday morning, with Cyrus Christie poised to start at right back.

Seamus Coleman sat out Wednesday's Republic of Ireland training session
Everton defender Seamus Coleman sat out Wednesday's Republic of Ireland training session

Fears over Wes Hoolahan's fitness have eased after he trained with the rest of Martin O'Neill's squad on Wednesday.

However with Glenn Whelan and James McClean suspended and injury concerns over Marc Wilson, Darron Gibson and Ciaran Clark, Meyler could get the nod for his first competitive start in a central midfield role.

That could bring him into direct contact with Manchester United's Schweinsteiger, but Meyler insists he will not be fazed by the challenge.

"Schweinsteiger has done it for a long time at the top level - he's won a hundred and odd caps, he's won a World Cup, he's won the Champions League, he's won several Bundesliga titles, so you look at players like him and you aspire to be like that.

"But at the end of the day, if you are given an opportunity to play against him, I have got to get the better of him.

"A lot of [Germans] don't like physicality, but that's just the way it is.

"We have grown up here and it's a bit different - a lot of us probably played GAA as kids, so we understand the knocks and bumps come.

"They like to get the ball down and pass it, they don't like too much contact, so we need to get into their faces and make it tough for them."

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