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Young Front Three to Start for Ireland Against Latvia



The Reports

According to the latest reports, Stephen Kenny is set to go with a young front three against Latvia.

Daniel McDonnell of the Irish Independent has reported that the most likely front three for the friendly game is Will Smallbone in behind Evan Ferguson and Michael Obafemi.

The Unfamiliar Trio

This front three has, of course, never started a game together, as this will be the first start for the senior side for both Smallbone and Ferguson.

Expecting that we’ll see Ferguson and Michael Obafemi play together tonight. Will Smallbone to start from a deeper role.

Doherty Confirmed as Captain

The only other confirmation that Kenny has made is that Matt Doherty will start the game and be the captain on the day.

Gavin Bazunu is also likely to start in goal, especially after his good form in the Premier League with Southampton.

Youthful Defense

Doherty being captain implies that other senior players may not be playing on the night, including Seamus Coleman, James McClean, and John Egan, all of whom have captained Ireland in the past.

This could lead to starts being given to young defenders, including Nathan Collins, Dara O’Shea, or Andrew Omobamidele.

The Implication

The attacking trio implies that Kenny is expecting to have most of the ball against a resolute Latvian side, with two strikers and no wingers in the team.

Smallbone will be tasked with picking a pass and finding either of the two strikers, while he should also be on set-pieces.


Kick-off from the Aviva Stadium is 7.45 pm.



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