The other 22 members of Giovanni Trapattoni's squad have also been passed fit and will make the 3,000-mile trip to the former Soviet republic today. Trapattoni said on Tuesday that McClean is likely to start on the bench in Friday's game, with the Italian preferring Nottingham Forest man Simon Cox to play in midfield instead. Trapattoni also confirmed on Tuesday that he intends to give Wigan midfielder James McCarthy his first competitive start for the Republic and added that Jon Walters of Stoke is ahead of Kevin Doyle in the running to partner captain Robbie Keane up front.
The Republic are hoping to get their Brazil 2014 qualifying campaign off to the best possible start given that they have been placed in a difficult group that contains Germany, Sweden and Austria. After Friday night's game the squad will fly to London where they will play Oman in a friendly at Craven Cottage on Tuesday night.