Long to captain Ireland against Georgia

01 June 2013 02:47

West Bromwich Albion striker Shane Long will captain the Republic of Ireland in Sunday's friendly against Georgia.

Long scored Ireland's goal in their 1-1 draw against England at Wembley on Wednesday and he has been rewarded with the captain's armband.

Although he is suspended for Friday's World Cup qualifier against the Faroe Islands, Long will lead a much-changed side at Lansdowne Road in Dublin, with regular skipper Robbie Keane among several players rested by Ireland coach Giovanni Trapattoni.

"He was a young player, now he's a senior. He has a heavy responsibility, as every captain," Trapattoni said of Long on Saturday.

"He must play well and score a goal if possible, but he has also to advise the other players."

Long, 26, and Wigan midfielder James McCarthy are the only players to be retained from the side which started the friendly against England.

Keiren Westwood will replace David Forde in goal, while Paul McShane, Richard Keogh, Damien Delaney and the fit-again Marc Wilson will line up at the back.

Andy Keogh, Wes Hoolahan, McCarthy and James McClean will comprise the midfield quarter, while Long will be partnered in attack by Simon Cox.

Richard Dunne will start on the bench and Trapattoni intends to give him a run-out after the break in what would be his first appearance for either club or country in almost a year.

Source: AFP