Doubts persist over Keane fitness ahead of Euro 2016

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The LA Galaxy striker is in the final 23-man squad for the tournament but might not be fit to play against Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Sweden

Robbie Keane may not be fit enough to play in the Republic of Ireland's opening Euro 2016 game against Sweden on June 13, but Martin O'Neill is positive about James McCarthy's prospects of being involved.

Keane was named in Martin O'Neill's final 23-man squad for the tournament in France, despite sustaining a calf strain during training ahead of Ireland's final warm-up friendly against Belarus.

The LA Galaxy striker did not feature in the 1-1 draw with the Netherlands last Friday and had been due to start against Belarus at Turner's Cross before injury scuppered O'Neill's plans to give the 35-year-old a game prior to the tournament.

"[Keane] thinks that he could be [fit for the first game]. If it's not Sweden, he thinks he'll be fit for the second game," O'Neill told reporters after announcing his squad for Euro 2016. 

"That's the thought at this minute, but I am not a doctor."

Like Keane, McCarthy did not play in either friendly, but has been training separately from the rest of the squad with a fitness coach and completed a session on Tuesday, giving O'Neill  a sense of optimism about the Everton midfielder's chances of playing in France.

The Ireland boss added: "James McCarthy did a little bit of work [on Tuesday], it's a good improvement in that sense and that helps a lot. 

"I'm not a soothsayer, but I think there's a fairly decent chance that they're going to be ok."

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Ireland kick off their European Championship against Sweden in Paris on June 13.

 

 

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