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Doubt about James McCarthy's fitness is a big cause for concern


James McCarthy

James McCarthy


James McCarthy

THIS is a big, big week for Martin O'Neill and Ireland and he needs every single ounce of energy from his players in Celtic Park on Friday night. There is no room for faint hearts

I'm worried about the doubt over James McCarthy's fitness because we need him against Scotland, never mind the fact that he missed the German game.

He remains our most accomplished midfield performer and I notice that AC Milan have joined Manchester United in keeping an eye on him, with a move next summer in mind.

He is growing into his talent and is vital to Ireland's chances of leaving Glasgow with at least a point.

It seems that every game now, there's a bad news bulletin out of Goodison Park about either Seamus Coleman or McCarthy and we spend a few weeks wondering nervously will they be fit.

The word is that both he and Marc Wilson will report in for assessment and I'm delighted to hear that.

Let the FAI's medical people have a look and that way there is no room for any misunderstanding. If there is an injury, it will show. If not, he plays.