Shay Given, Richard Dunne, Damien Duff, and Robbie Keane all miss out as Giovanni Trapattoni selects experimental squad to face Serbia in August friendly
Senior players Shay Given, Richard Dunne, Damien Duff, and Robbie Keane have all been left out of the squad, with Trapattoni looking to refresh his team ahead of World Cup 2014 qualifiers, which kick off in September.
Keith Andrews and Stephen Hunt are also notable omissions from the panel, as the Italian manager tries to alter the squad which suffered three disappointing defeats at Euro 2012.
Stoke City defender Marc Wilson returns to the squad, while there are also recalls for Keith Treacy, James McCarthy, Andy Keogh and Seamus Coleman.
Speaking at the FAI’s AGM Festival of Football in Ballybofey, Co Donegal, Trapattoni explained his decision to rest more senior names. “This friendly offers us a great opportunity to try out younger players ahead of our World Cup qualifying campaign," said Trapattoni. "As a result, I have decided to leave some of our senior players out of the squad for this fixture.
"Serbia are a very good team with a great football heritage, and will provide us with a great test before our game against Kazakhstan in September.
“I am looking forward to working with each of these players next month. As we prepare for a new journey for this team, it is important that we remember our last campaign as we build for a brighter future.”
Trapattoni discussed the friendly with the senior players, telling them of his intentions to try something new against Serbia. "I spoke with them on day after Poland. I informed them 'I wish let you quiet, I wish try other players'," Trapattoni said.
The Italian attempted to call up Kevin Foley, but the Wolverhampton Wanderers defender turned down the offer after being excluded from the Euro 2012 squad: "I called Foley, spoke with him, he said he's a little bit sad. He said 'thank you, but I'm not ready in this moment, I'm disappointed."
There was much clamour for the inclusion of Norwich duo Wes Hoolahan and Anthony Pikington, but Trapattoni has indicated that he will offer James McCarthy the chance to impress in midfield with the intention of starting him against Kazakhstan due to Keith Andrews' suspension. "We follow Hoolahan & Pilkington, but we already have McCarthy, I wish to see James. I wish McCarthy in midfield," revealed Trapattoni.
Westwood, Forde, Randolph, Wilson, O'Shea, St Ledger, O'Dea, Ward, Kelly, McShane, Whelan, Gibson, McCarthy, Green, Coleman, McGeady, Keogh, McClean, Treacy, Doyle, Long, Cox, Walters