Home Features Here’s The Starting XI We Feel Mick McCarthy Will Pick Against Georgia

Here’s The Starting XI We Feel Mick McCarthy Will Pick Against Georgia

UEFA Euro 2020 Qualifying Round Group D, Victoria Stadium, Gibraltar 23/3/2019 Gibraltar vs Republic of Ireland The Ireland team ahead of the game Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Ryan Byrne

Mick McCarthy got his second spell in charge of Ireland off to a slightly shaky start on Saturday after scraping past Gibraltar by a single goal to nil in treacherous conditions.

The new Irish boss went for a 4-4-2 in his first game back at the helm, but the Boys in Green were far from impressive as they won their Group D opener.

Given the different challenge that the Georgians pose, it is unlikely that McCarthy will name the same starting XI for the game at the Aviva on Tuesday night.

Shane Duffy picked up a slight ankle injury but is expected to be fit for the visit of Georgia so with that in mind let’s take a look at the starting XI we here at Pundit Arena feel McCarthy will go with for the game on Tuesday night.




Given the fact that Darren Randolph saved Ireland’s blushes with a fantastic save against Gibraltar, it’s impossible to see anyone but the Middlesbrough man between the sticks.

He also again displayed his ability from kick-outs, finding James McClean and starting off the move for Hendrick’s goal on Saturday night.

The Seamus Coleman and Matt Doherty on the same side experiment didn’t work particularly well for McCarthy against Gibraltar but it’s likely he tries another way to fit them both in on Tuesday.

Enda Stevens didn’t look overly impressive and could be the man sacrificed, with Doherty well capable of playing at left-back, given he won Wolves’ player of the year award operating from there a few seasons ago.

Coleman being the captain should retain his place at right-back.

If Shane Duffy is fit he will certainly play in the heart of the defence, and despite John Egan’s fantastic form at club level, Richard Keogh‘s experience may see him retained by McCarthy in the centre-back role.

Into the midfield and considering the upgrade in the quality of opposition, McCarthy may look to add a third player into the centre, similarly to the way his side finished the game on Saturday.

Glenn Whelan as the most natural holder could be included at the base, while the impressive Conor Hourihane will retain his place and perhaps be given more freedom going forward thanks to Whelan’s inclusion.

Goalscorer Jeff Hendrick should get the opportunity to get on the scoresheet again in the central midfield area.

Up top, Sean Maguire struggled against Gibraltar at times and his fitness could be an issue given this would be his second game in just four days.

David McGoldrick who set up the Irish goal may be pushed up as the lone striker with Robbie Brady on the right of the three so that he can cut inside and hopefully cause the Georgian left-back problems.

Finally, James McClean may be left out of the side entirely thanks to his below-par performance at the weekend with Ipswich’s Alan Judge a promising option for McCarthy to try on the left of the front three.

About Oisin McQueirns

Oisin McQueirns is a digital journalist at Pundit Arena. Massive fan of Leeds United, Ric Flair and Trusting The Process. Contact him here oisin@punditarena.com