Burnley defender Kevin Long handed first Republic of Ireland call-up

Burnley defender Kevin Long
Kevin Long made his debut for Burnley against West Bromwich Albion two weeks ago

Burnley defender Kevin Long has been handed his first call-up into a 37-man Republic of Ireland squad for the games against Mexico, Uruguay and Austria.

Long, 26, made his first Premier League start against West Brom two weeks ago.

The ex-Cork City player was again in action for the Clarets in the weekend defeat by Bournemouth and could now be in line for his international debut.

The Republic face Mexico and Uruguay in friendlies, then play Austria on 11 June in a Dublin World Cup qualifier.

Everton midfielder James McCarthy, the subject of verbal exchanges between Republic boss Martin O'Neill and Toffees boss Ronald Koeman, is not included having not played since early March because of a groin injury.

After limited game time for Everton, McCarthy was picked to play in the Republic's World Cup qualifier against Wales on 24 March but pulled shortly before kick-off having felt a recurrence of his injury during the pre-match warm-up.

O'Neill's side take on Mexico in New Jersey on 1 June, before hosting Uruguay at the Aviva Stadium on 4 June.

"I saw Kevin Long play last week," said O'Neill. "He really impressed me, don't discount him. It'll be good to have a look at him."

Maguire being 'monitored'

Cork City player Sean Maguire has not been included, although O'Neill said the striker is a player "we are monitoring".

"If he continues to progress, there's no reason why he can't make it, but there are people ahead of him in terms of experience as much as anything," added O'Neill.

O'Neill has also called up Reading playmaker Liam Kelly, currently trying to shrug off illness to make his side's Championship play-off semi-final second leg against Fulham.

His team-mate Paul McShane is suspended for that game after seeing red in the first leg, but he will link up with his country for the three forthcoming fixtures.

Marc Wilson is named after a year plagued by injuries, while Preston trio Andy Boyle, Daryl Horgan and Aiden McGeady are again involved.

The Republic are unbeaten in their Group D campaign and lie second, level on points with leaders Serbia after five rounds of fixtures.

Republic squad for three June fixtures:

Goalkeepers: Colin Doyle, Rob Elliot, Keiren Westwood, Darren Randolph

Defenders: Cyrus Christie, Richard Keogh, Alex Pearce, Paul McShane, Shane Duffy, John O'Shea , Andy Boyle, John Egan, Marc Wilson, Kevin Long, Stephen Ward, Matt Doherty.

Midfielders: Aiden McGeady, Glenn Whelan, Jeff Hendrick, Robbie Brady, Harry Arter, Conor Hourihane, Stephen Gleeson, Eunan O'Kane, Darron Gibson, Liam Kelly, Wes Hoolahan, James McClean, Callum O'Dowda, Daryl Horgan, Jonathan Hayes

Forwards: Kevin Doyle, David McGoldrick, Daryl Murphy, Shane Long, Jonathan Walters, Adam Rooney

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