Euro 2012: Republic of Ireland include James McClean in squad

James McClean
James McClean

Republic of Ireland manager Giovanni Trapattoni has included James McClean in his 23-man squad for Euro 2012.

The 23-year-old winger has made a massive impression in his first season at Sunderland and made his senior debut for the Republic in February.

The former Derry City player received a huge ovation when he came on as a substitute against the Czech Republic.

Wigan's James McCarthy withdrew himself from consideration after his father was diagnosed with cancer.

In a statement issued by the Football Association of Ireland, McCarthy said: "I have made the very difficult decision to withdraw my name from selection from the Euro 2012 squad following the diagnosis of my father with cancer and an ongoing requirement for treatment.

"I have discussed this with the manager. He was very understanding and I thank him sincerely for that.

"I take this opportunity to re-affirm my complete commitment to playing for the Republic of Ireland.

"It is a huge honour and source of great pride for me and my family.

"Despite not being present, I would like to wish the manager and my team-mates every success at the tournament and hope that Irish fans can understand the reason for my decision at this difficult time."

Speaking at the announcement of the squad, Trapattoni said he had assured McCarthy that he remained part of his plans for the future.

The remainder of the squad is along the expected lines, with Richard Dunne and Stephen Hunt both fit after overcoming injuries.

Darron Gibson and Keith Fahey are still currently battling back from injury.

McClean was thrilled by the news of his inclusion, which was delivered in a phone call from Trapattoni on Monday morning.

The Sunderland player tweeted: "Absolutely honoured and couldn't be happier to have been called up to represent my country at the Euros. No better feeling."

The Republic will continue their preparations for this summer's tournament in Poland and Ukraine by playing friendlies against Bosnia-Herzegovina on Saturday 26 May and Denmark two days later.

Republic of Ireland squad for Euro 2012: Shay Given (Aston Villa), Keiren Westwood (Sunderland), David Forde (Millwall); John O'Shea (Sunderland), Stephen Kelly (Fulham), Stephen Ward (Wolves), Richard Dunne (Aston Villa), Sean St Ledger (Leicester), Darren O'Dea (Leeds), Kevin Foley (Wolves); Glenn Whelan (Stoke), Keith Andrews (West Brom), Keith Fahey (Birmingham), Darron Gibson (Everton), Damien Duff (Fulham), Aiden McGeady (Spartak Moscow), Stephen Hunt (Wolves), James McClean (Sunderland); Robbie Keane (LA Galaxy), Kevin Doyle (Wolves), Shane Long, Simon Cox (both West Brom), Jon Walters (Stoke).

Stand-by: Darren Randolph (Motherwell), Paul McShane (Crystal Palace), Paul Green (Unattached), Seamus Coleman (Everton), Andy Keogh (Millwall).

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