Dunne plans to play on

25 August 2012 07:17

Republic of Ireland boss Giovanni Trapattoni has been boosted by the news that Richard Dunne has no immediate plans to follow Shay Given and Damien Duff into international retirement.

The Italian and assistant Marco Tardelli held a meeting with the 32-year-old Aston Villa defender, who is currently recovering from a groin injury, earlier today and were encouraged by what they heard.

A spokesman for the Football Association of Ireland said: "Giovanni Trapattoni and Marco Tardelli held a positive meeting with Richard Dunne today. Richard re-confirmed that he will be available again for international duty once he makes a full recovery."

The news came just 24 hours after midfielder Duff, 33, announced his decision to retire from the international game after winning 100 senior caps, following in the footsteps of 36-year-old keeper Given, who made 125 appearances for his country.

The Republic launch their World Cup qualifying campaign in Kazakhstan next month as they attempt to bounce back from a disappointing showing at Euro 2014.

Dunne was not included when Trapattoni announced his 23-man squad, but will hope to return for the clashes with Germany and the Faroe Islands in October.

There was speculation in the wake of Ireland's difficulties in Poland and Ukraine that senior men Given, Duff, Dunne and Robbie Keane could all call it a day.

However, skipper Keane remains on board and Dunne's intention to continue to make himself available will come as some comfort to Trapattoni as he attempts to re-shape his squad for a fresh challenge.

Source: PA

World Cup Group G

Belgium 1 0 0 3 3
England 1 0 0 1 3
Tunisa 0 0 1 -1 0
Panama 0 0 1 -3 0
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