James McClean 'gutted' to miss Bulgaria game after testing positive for Covid-19

James McClean has tested positive for Covid-19.James McClean has tested positive for Covid-19.
James McClean has tested positive for Covid-19.
Stoke City winger James McClean and Spurs defender Matt Doherty have pulled out of Republic of Ireland's squad after testing positive for Covid-19.

The Football Association of Ireland confirmed the news this afternoon as the experienced pair are set to miss the Uefa Nations League clash against Bulgaria on Wednesday night.

"The Football Association of Ireland can confirm Ireland defender Matt Doherty and forward James McClean have tested positive for COVID-19," read a statement by the FAI.

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"The players have been isolated from the group as per COVID-19 protocols, and the HSE have been informed of this development.

"The rest of the staff & squad tested negative ahead of the flight back to Dublin this morning before the UEFA Nations League match against Bulgaria on Wednesday."

McClean was named Three man of the match after his performance in the 1-0 Nations League defeat to Wales at the Cardiff City Stadium on Sunday.

Posting on Instagram, McClean said he was 'gutted' to miss Wednesday's crunch clash with Bulgaria at the Aviva.

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"Difficult period or results, fine margins in most games but need to start ensuring they turn in our favour going forward . . gutted also to missing [sic] the game on Wednesday due to testing positive with Covid!"

Stephen Kenny's reign as Ireland boss has been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic as he's previously had to plan without strikers Aaron Connolly and Adam Idah for the crucial Euro 2020 playoff defeat to Slovakia after they were deemed close contacts to a positive case.

Five players were then ruled out of the Nations League home game with Wales with Kenny finding out the news on the day of the game.

And the Ireland boss is already without Alan Browne and Callum Robinson through positive cases for this international break.

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