Latest Ireland v Serbia live stream schedule, plus team news and match preview as the Irish look to continue their momentum under new leadership (KO 19:45).
Martin O’Neill and his assistant Roy Keane will step up their preparations for the European Championship qualifiers when they take on Serbia at the Aviva this evening.
IRELAND v SERBIA
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The game will mark the third time that the much heralded pair have been in the dugout for Ireland but with then caretaker manager Noel King naming the squad for the clashes with Latvia and Poland the game with Serbia represents the first time the pair have picked a squad.
Of those originally named, a few have pulled out depriving O’Neill the chance to assess their suitability to his systems ahead of their opening qualifier with Georgia in September.
Kevin Doyle, the uncapped Rob Elliot and Andy Reid, all of whom would have been to impress have been suffered injuries and won’t play.
Ireland will be also without Richard Dunne for the clash. The experienced QPR defender is not injured or carrying any knocks but is being rested for the game with the Serbians.
Despite the defender missing out on Wednesday, O’Neill revealed that he will feature in future friendly games and was still in his plans.
“If the qualifying campaign [started] in the morning, because of the amount of games he has played and the form he has shown for Ireland over quite a number of matches, you would certainly have to give [his selection] consideration,” said O’Neill.
O’Neill has opted to not call up any more men despite the squad size dropping down to 25. Two men keen to make their mark under O’Neill, Jon Walters and the recalled Daryl Murphy will both into the game on the back of goal scoring performances.
With Doyle out and Keane not named in the squad, the pair along with Shane Long, Simon Cox and Anthony Stokes will hope to start.
With Dunne out and John O’Shea unlikely to start on the bench after his exploits at Wembley in Sunderland’s 3-1 defeat to Manchester City, Marc Wilson, so impressive for Stoke against Arsenal, will hope to feature in the middle of defence with Derby’s Richard Keogh, Damien Delaney and Ian Pearce vying to feature alongside the 26 year old.
Seamus Coleman and Ciaran Clark are set to start in the full back positions with David Forde set to start in goal.
David Meyler, fresh from his role in the £100,000 fine handed out to Newcastle manager Alan Pardew for his head-butt on the Cork man, will hope his fine form for Hull sees him start in the middle alongside James McCarthy while Aidan McGeady and to yet to withdraw Anthony Pilkington should start on the flanks.
Ireland will head into the game unbeaten in their last three games and unbeaten in the two games O’Neill has taken charge of.
Serbian meanwhile have won three and drawn 2 of their last five games beating Wales, Japan and Macedonia as well as drawing with Croatia and Russia.