Spurs youngster Dixon in Ireland squad for Chile

Updated: May 8, 2006, 10:40 AM ET
Reuters

(Adds quotes, details)

By Michael Holden

DUBLIN, May 8 - Tottenham Hotspur's uncapped 16-year-old Terry Dixon has been included in Ireland's 29-man squad for a training camp in Portugal followed by a friendly against Chile in Dublin later this month.

The striker, who is yet to play for Tottenham's first team, was the surprise inclusion after catching coach Steve Staunton's eye during the UEFA under-17 championship.

"He's a talented boy, he's got very good ability and he's highly thought of," Staunton told a news conference on Monday.

"I would like to reward at least one player in each squad who ... was progressing, just to take them along and to show them what we're all about."

Fellow Spurs player Andy Reid returns to the squad after missing March's 3-0 friendly victory over World cup finalists Sweden with injury.

There was also a recall for Shelbourne's Jason Byrne, who won his only cap against Poland in 2004.

Newcastle United defender Steven Carr, who announced earlier this year he had reversed his decision to retire from international soccer, was omitted from the squad.

"I've allowed him the summer off to allow him to recuperate. He's had quite a few injuries this year and its more beneficial for him to have the summer off and rest," Staunton said.

Staunton, Ireland's most capped player, was appointed national manager in January, with former England coach Bobby Robson as mentor, after Brian Kerr was sacked last October.

Robson had surgery last month to repair lung damage sustained in a skiing accident and will miss the trip to Portugal but could make the Chile game on May 24, Staunton said.

The match will be part of Ireland's preparations for the Euro 2008 qualifiers. They have been drawn in Group D with Germany, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Wales, Cyprus and San Marino.

Squad:

Goalkeepers: Shay Given (Newcastle United), Paddy Kenny (Sheffield United), Wayne Henderson (Brighton & Hove Albion)

Defenders: Gary Breen (Sunderland), Ian Harte (Levante), Steve Finnan (Liverpool), Andy O'Brien (Portsmouth), Richard Dunne (Manchester City), John O'Shea (Manchester United), Stephen Kelly (Tottenham Hotspur)

Midfielders: Liam Miller (Leeds United), Kevin Kilbane (Everton), Steven Reid (Blackburn Rovers), Damien Duff (Chelsea), Graham Kavanagh (Wigan Athletic), Joey O'Brien (Bolton Wanderers), Jonathan Douglas (Leeds United), Michael Doyle (Coventry City), Andy Reid (Tottenham Hotspur), Alan Quinn (Sheffield United), Aiden McGeady (Celtic)

Forwards: Robbie Keane (Tottenham Hotspur), Clinton Morrison (Crystal Palace), Kevin Doyle (Reading), Stephen Elliott (Sunderland), Liam Lawrence (Sunderland), Jason Byrne (Shelbourne FC), Alan Lee (Cardiff City), Terry Dixon (Tottenham Hotspur)

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