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McCarthy withdraws from Euro selection
James McCarthy has withdrawn from the Republic of Ireland squad for the Euro 2012 finals after revealing his father has been diagnosed with cancer.
The Wigan midfielder would have been included in Giovanni Trapattoni's 23-man squad, which the Italian announced on Monday afternoon at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin, but called his manager last week to tell him the news.
McCarthy confirmed his decision in a statement which said: "I have made the very difficult decision to withdraw my name from selection from the Euro 2012 squad following the diagnosis of my father with cancer and an ongoing requirement for treatment."
The 21-year-old added: "I have discussed this with the manager. He was very understanding and I thank him sincerely for that.
"I take this opportunity to re-affirm my complete commitment to playing for the Republic of Ireland. It is a huge honour and source of great pride for me and my family.
"Despite not being present, I would like to wish the manager and my team-mates every success at the tournament and hope that Irish fans can understand the reason for my decision at this difficult time."
Trapattoni expressed his sympathy for McCarthy and his family and promised the player he will remain in his long-term plans. "Last week, he called me and told me what had happened with his family, and I told him, 'I am sorry, I am very, very sorry'," he said.
"But he has decided to remain at home because he has a very heavy duty for his parents. I told him immediately that we would continue to follow him and that he will be in our plans for the future. He said, 'Thanks for this'."
Republic of Ireland squad for Euro 2012: Shay Given (Aston Villa), Keiren Westwood (Sunderland), David Forde (Millwall); John O'Shea (Sunderland), Stephen Kelly (Fulham), Stephen Ward (Wolves), Richard Dunne (Aston Villa), Sean St Ledger (Leicester), Darren O'Dea (Leeds), Kevin Foley (Wolves); Glenn Whelan (Stoke), Keith Andrews (West Brom), Keith Fahey (Birmingham), Darron Gibson (Everton), Damien Duff (Fulham), Aiden McGeady (Spartak Moscow), Stephen Hunt (Wolves), James McClean (Sunderland); Robbie Keane (LA Galaxy), Kevin Doyle (Wolves), Shane Long, Simon Cox (both West Brom), Jon Walters (Stoke).
Stand-by: Darren Randolph (Motherwell), Paul McShane (Crystal Palace), Paul Green (Unattached), Seamus Coleman (Everton), Andy Keogh (Millwall).