Shay Given wants Republic of Ireland jersey against Poland

Shay Given with David Forde at Republic of Ireland training on Monday
Shay Given and David Forde are battling for the Republic's goalkeeping jersey

Euro 2016 qualifier: Republic of Ireland v Poland

Venue:
Aviva Stadium, Dublin
Date:
Sunday, 29 March
Kick-off:
19:45 BST
Coverage:
Score updates on BBC Five Live and BBC Sport website

Shay Given is hoping to reclaim the Republic of Ireland goalkeeper's jersey for Sunday's vital Euro 2016 qualifier against Poland in Dublin.

Given, 38, retired from Republic duty after Euro 2012 but was coaxed back last autumn.

Since then, Millwall's David Forde has remained the Republic's regular starter but Given made it clear on Monday he is keen to line up against the Poles.

"Because it's such a huge game, I would love to play on Sunday," Given said.

Republic boss Martin O'Neill has not given any indication over whether he will keep faith with Forde for the qualifier but the manager must be mindful of Given's impressive recent form when he has started for Aston Villa.

However, Forde can also point to his outstanding display for Millwall against Brentford on Saturday when he made a series of brilliant saves in the 2-2 Championship draw.

"I don't pick the team, I have just got to work hard in training," added Given, who has been capped 127 times.

"I have been playing well at Aston Villa when given the chance, and hopefully I might get the nod on Sunday.

Republic of Ireland v Poland most recent meetings
November 2013: Poland 0-0 Rep of Ireland - friendly
February 2013: Rep of Ireland 2-0 Poland - friendly
November 2008: Rep of Ireland 2-3 Poland
April 2004: Rep of Ireland 0-0 Poland
November 1991: Poland 3-3 Rep of Ireland
May 1991: Rep of Ireland 0-0 Poland

"But if not, I'll support whoever he picks."

Given started the Republic's last game against the United States in November although that was only a friendly contest four days after the 1-0 Euro qualifier defeat by Scotland.

Donegal man Given makes no attempt to downplay the importance of Sunday's game against the surprise Group D leaders.

"It's not must-win yet, but it's must-not-lose, I suppose," he said.

"We have all been here before in this situation. We know how important it is."

O'Neill's Republic side opened their campaign with victories in Georgia and at home to Gibraltar followed by a 1-1 draw in Germany and then the defeat in Scotland.

Poland have a three-point lead over Germany, Scotland and Ireland at the top of the table having beaten the world champions 2-0 in Warsaw in October before being held to a 2-2 draw by the Scots.

Scores, Results & Fixtures

Sunday 29th March 2015

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