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The Canaries winger has suffered a hamstring injury and has been forced to withdraw from Giovanni Trapattoni's Republic of Ireland squad ahead of games against Sweden and Austria

Republic of Ireland manager Giovanni Trapattoni has been dealt a blow ahead of the World Cup qualification games against Sweden and Austria after Norwich City midfielder Anthony Pilkington suffered a hamstring injury.

The Canaries winger had to be taken off after 35 minutes after sustaining a hamstring strain during the 0-0 draw with Southampton at the weekend and has subsequently withdrawn from the international squad, the Football Association of Ireland (FAI) has confirmed.

Pilkington, 24, was set to make his international debut for the Boys in Green in the friendly against Poland in February, but a knee injury meant that the player had to withdraw.

The Republic of Ireland face Sweden on Friday, March 22 before hosting Austria at the Aviva Stadium on Tuesday, March 26.