The Republic of Ireland Amateur team fly out to Barcelona today for an attractive friendly international against Catalonia tomorrow evening as manager Gerry Smith commences preparations for this season's UEFA Regions Cup.
Following the trip to Barcelona, the Amateurs will play Scotland in Frank Cooke Park, Tipperary, on Saturday, October 6, at 7pm, as part of the 25th Anniversary celebrations of the Canon Hayes Centre. A month later, on Saturday, November 3, Ireland will host England in Dublin.
Ireland are due to play their UEFA Regions Cup intermediate qualifier in March 2013 in San Marino where the hosts, England and Northern Ireland will provide the opposition. Ireland will be represented by a Munster/Leinster selection, Jersey will represent England and the Eastern Region will represent Northern Ireland. The qualifying tournament will run from March 6 to March 10 with Ireland opening up against Jersey, then playing San Marino and finishing with a game against the Northern Ireland representatives. The finals will take place in June 2013 and will be hosted by one of the countries that makes it through the Intermediary Round.
This week's match in Barcelona will kick-off at 8:15pm Irish time tomorrow in the stadium of CE Sabadell who play in La Liga's Second Division and which has a capacity of 12,000. With Catalonia due to compete in their UEFA Regions Cup qualifying round next month in Ukraine the match against Ireland has attracted a lot of attention locally and is being televised live by the local television channel in Barcelona. FAI CEO John Delaney is accompanying the Irish party.
The squad for the game in Barcelona is: Brendan O' Connell (Rockmount Utd), Adrian Walsh (Carrick Utd), Conor Dillon (St. Kevins Boys), Ross Carrig (St. Kevins Boys), James Walsh (St. Michaels FC), Christopher Higgins (St. Michaels FC), Noel Murray (Tolka Rovers), Ken Hoey (Rockmount Utd), Neil O' Brien (Mount Merrion), Laurence Dunne (Bangor Celtic), Glen Keddy (Mount Merrion FC), James Lee (Crumlin Utd), Ray Whelehan (Wayside Celtic), Adam Foley (Glebe North), Thomas Dunne (St. Pats CY), David O' Sullivan (Wayside Celtic), David Lacey (Killester Utd), Barry Kavanagh (Duleek FC).
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