Mar 24, 2017 at 7.45pm UK at ​Aviva Stadium
Rep. IrelandRepublic of Ireland

Meyler (46'), McGeady (90')

Ramsey (57'), Bale (68')
Taylor (69')

Martin O'Neill bemoans Republic of Ireland injury crisis ahead of Wales clash

Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill asks 'Is it bigger than a bread bin?' during his side's Euro 2016 qualifier with Germany.
© Getty Images
Martin O'Neill laments the 'worst injury crisis' he has known since taking on the Republic of Ireland job three years ago, as he prepares his side for the visit of Wales.

Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill has admitted that he is facing his toughest selection decision yet for the visit of Wales after losing a number of players to injury.

Wes Hoolahan, Shane Duffy, Ciaran Clark and Harry Arter are the latest star names to drop out of the squad, joining suspended versatile wideman Robbie Brady in the Aviva Stadium stands.

There are also question marks over Daryl Murphy and James McCarthy for Friday night's crucial World Cup 2018 qualifier, while opponents Wales have fewer problems to contend with - in-form forward Tom Lawrence being their only major absentee - following the recent return to action of star man Gareth Bale.

Asked about his side's injury problems, O'Neill told reporters: "How long have you got? It's the lengthiest list of injuries that I have known since I have come into the job, and unfortunately it's happened at a really crucial time for us.

"However, other players will have to step up and just be ready for Friday. Do you know, I have often said this before, that you just curse your luck and get on with it.

"The irony of all of this here is that way back when Gareth Bale got injured in November-time, everybody was talking about Wales possibly having one of their major players out of the team, and it turns out that we are the ones who are doing the suffering. But it is what it is and we'll get on with it and we'll be ready to go on Friday."

Ireland have a four-point advantage on Wales in Group D as the midway point in qualifying for Russia 2018 approaches.

A terrified Ben Woodburn in action during the Premier League game between Liverpool and Burnley on March 12, 2017
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