Brighton striker Aaron Connolly has been ruled out of Ireland’s upcoming Aviva doubleheader against New Zealand and Denmark with a groin injury.
Connolly came off injured during half-time of his side’s 3-1 defeat to Manchester United at the weekend with manager Graham Potter outlining that he was “feeling his thigh a little.”
The FAI confirmed the news on Monday after the striker went for a scan on the injury.
“Our team doctor Alan Byrne has spoken to the Brighton medical team and had a look at the scans,” McCarthy told the FAI website.
“The scans have confirmed the groin injury and Aaron won’t be ready in time for New Zealand and Denmark.”
The FAI statement also confirmed that McCarthy will not be calling in a replacement for Connolly.
The news of Connolly’s injury comes as a blow for the Boys in Green after the 19-year-old’s strong start to the Premier League season which saw him score two goals on his full top-flight debut against Tottenham.
One player who will feature against New Zealand is the 2019 PFAI Player of the Year Jack Byrne who McCarthy confirmed would be involved for what will be just his second international cap.
The Irish boss also outlined that the U21 duo of Lee O’Connor and Troy Parrott would play a part in the game, with an opportunity to impress in their first senior outing at stake.
“They are the young ones, so every chance (they will play). Jack (Byrne) will be involved, he will play some part of the game. I expect they will be playing.”
“(Troy Parrott) is thrilled to be in the squad. He had a smile from ear to ear when he came in last night.”
The New Zealand friendly may mean little in the grand scheme of things, with Monday’s clash against Denmark the much bigger game but it will represent the chance for some of the squad’s fringe players to stake a claim at the starting XI for the final Euro 2020 qualifier.
“There is scope for them to do themselves a whole load of good, that is for sure,” said McCarthy.
“Whether that transmits to Monday we will find out. Let them get in, let them play well. Let’s hope we do play well. Let’s hope we win and we’ll see how I feel after the game.”