All the Irish gathering in Cork

ROY Keane may be the most famous but other Irishmen could well be figuring for the Blues at Cork City tomorrow. Damien Delaney, the �700.

Derek Davis

Irishmen to the fore

in Cork tomorrow

By Derek Davis in Cork

ROY Keane may be the most famous but other Irishmen could well be figuring for the Blues at Cork City tomorrow.

Damien Delaney, the �700.000 signing from QPR, is also from Cork and the defender who played in the 3-1 win over Brentford in midweek will welcome the chance to play at Turners Cross.

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Midfielder Owen Garvan and keeper Shane Supple know the ground well after appearances in Republic of Ireland representative sides, Garvan played against England on the pitch last year. Although a Dubliner

Alan Quinn is also well known to local fans after senior Irish appearances along with Alex Bruce who is a more recent cap.

Keane will select his team after seeing the fall out from last night's game with Waterford United and has already made it clear he will mix it up.

Billy Dennehy, Cillian Lordan, Shane Duggan, Kevin Long and Craig Duggan are all expected to play although City will be without injured pair Joe Gamble and Robert Mezeckis

City boss Paul Doolin says the timing of the game is perfect for his side give that they have three key players suspended for the trip to Derry City on Sunday week.

He said: “I must admit that I don't know a lot about the opposition apart from the manager himself.

“I know they signed a few in Damien Delaney, another Corkman and Lee Martin from Manchester United and we expect both of them to play.

“I know Owen Garvan and I have seen him play for the U-21's a few times and they have Alan Quinn and Shane Supple so they have a decent squad.”

Unlike Ronaldo, who was the subject of many column inches after giving a press conference after training with Real Madrid near Dublin in preparation for his debut against Shamrock Rovers on Monday, Keane's return to his native Ireland did not raise a murmur in the Irish national papers on Friday.

His impending presence was welcomed by Doolin.

He said: “I haven't met Roy Keane at all but I am really looking forward to it on Sunday.

“I have a lot of respect for him and, obviously, I have followed his career fairly closely as well.

“I think when you look back over the years, the type of player he was, I think the older he got, the better he got but that's a personal view," said Doolin.

On top of being vital preparation for Town the money raised in the friendly is of huge importance to Cork City who are looking to pay off a tax bill of around �260,000 before a High court hearing on July 27.

The Leesiders have been forced to start selling players at cut prices with Hartlepool last night on the verge of signing key men Colin Healy and Denis Bevan, so neither are likely to figure against the Blues tomorrow.