Jeff Hendrick ruled out of France game but could return for John O'Shea's last hurrah

Mon, May 28 2018

Hendrick celebrating Ireland's qualification for the Euro 2016 tournament in France. Credit: Eoin Smith

Jeff Hendrick has been ruled out of tonight’s international friendly against France – but could return for John O’Shea’s send-off against the United States on Saturday.

The Burnley man will be a notable absentee at the scene of his coming-of-age in a green shirt, the Stade de France in Paris, where he ran the midfield in a 1-1 draw with Sweden at Euro 2016.

He joins the likes of Darren Randolph, Sean Maguire and Keiren Westwood in sitting the game out through injury but retains hopes of returning for the Aviva meeting with the USA.

O’Neill had also been sweating over the fitness of winger Callum O’Dowda, but now expects the Bristol City flier to be fit to face the French.

“Callum is fine,” O’Neill told reporters at the pre-match press conference in Paris.

“He felt his groin a little bit. Unfortunately we have lost Jeff Hendrick. He has had to come out of training and he has not travelled.

“Hoping to be fit for USA game so naturally that is a blow for us as someone who did well at the Euros and has good experience.”

Ireland face France at the Stade de France tonight at 8pm Irish time, live on RTÉ2.

Additional reporting by Macdara Ferris in Paris