Preston midfielder Browne added to Ireland squad

Preston North End midfielder Alan Browne has been added to the Republic of Ireland squad ahead of games against Mexico, Uruguay and Austria.

Browne joins an extended panel for Ireland’s games, which take place in June. The Boys in Green play Mexico in New Jersey on June 1 before returning to Dublin to host Uruguay at Lansdowne Road on June 4. The friendly fixtures serve as warm-up games ahead of the 2018 World Cup qualifier against Austria at home on June 11.

The 21-year-old’s call-up comes a day after Everton manager Ronald Koeman indicated that James McCarthy would not be taking part in Ireland’s games.

“He will stay (at the club for these Ireland games),” Koeman said, according to the Irish Times. “He spoke to the manager and they took the decision he will not go to the national team. In my opinion that is a really good decision he needs to recover and get ready for pre-season.”

McCarthy, who has found himself at the centre of a spat between O’Neill and Koeman during the past year, had been named in the Football Association of Ireland’s official squad announcement, despite his widely reported injury issues.

Meanwhile, former Ireland Under-21 international Enda Stevens has expressed his delight after joining Sheffield United on a three-year deal.

Stevens, who counts Shamrock Rovers, Notts County and Aston Villa among his former clubs, joins the newly promoted Championship club from Portsmouth.

“I’m delighted the paperwork has been done early, it gives me the chance to settle in and concentrate on my football as soon as we report back for pre-season training,” the 26-year-old told Sheffield United’s official website.

“I enjoyed working under the gaffer (Chris Wilder) for a short spell at Northampton and how he plays the game is similar to the approach at Portsmouth so hopefully it will be a smooth transition.”

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