Dunne withdraws from Ireland squad

Aston Villa defender Richard Dunne has pulled out of the Republic of Ireland squad for their four end-of-season fixtures.

The 31-year-old, who played 90 minutes in Villa’s final Barclays Premier League game against Liverpool yesterday, has reported shoulder and Achilles problems.

The injuries are not thought serious but with Dunne suspended for the only upcoming competitive game against Macedonia on June 4, manager Giovanni Trapattoni does not feel it is necessary for him to report.

The Italian said: “He is suspended also for the Macedonia game so it is better to stay at home. I think it will be better next season when we start again.”

Dunne’s withdrawal follows the more controversial non-appearance of Celtic striker Anthony Stokes, who has cited tiredness for his absence.

Stokes featured as a substitute in the Scottish Cup final on Saturday but then informed the Football Association of Ireland he was unavailable for all four games.

The Republic face Northern Ireland tomorrow and Scotland on Sunday in the Carling Nations Cup in Dublin before their Euro 2012 qualifier with Macedonia and then a friendly with Italy.

Trapattoni admits he is still unsure about the final make-up of his squad.

As well as injuries, Ireland have players involved in the Champions League and play-off finals and several players are still to report after playing for their clubs yesterday.

“Up to now I don’t know which squad I will have,” he said. “Now I wait on players. I have players having scans and I hope they will be ready.

“After training today we can see the players. Some are coming this evening and this afternoon. Then after tomorrow we have a day of possibility to check on options.”

Trapattoni has also lost Ciaran Clark and Caleb Folan from his original squad while Darron Gibson (Manchester United), Shane Long (Reading) and Kevin Kilbane (Huddersfield) have not yet finished their club seasons.

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