Limerick invite for Town

ROY Keane's Ipswich Town have been invited to play Limerick at the famous rugby ground Thormand Park.

Derek Davis

ROY Keane's Ipswich Town have been invited to play Limerick at the famous rugby ground Thormand Park.

Nothing has yet been finalised but Town would play The Lims at the 26,500 stadium that is home to Munster RFC as part of a four-team soccer tournament.

Managed by Pat Scully, the Lims are currently sixth in the FAI division One and are owned by wealthy American Jack McCarthy.

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It has been suggested that a few Ireland rugby legends, including Ronan O'Gara, will pull on his football boots for the occasion but not for Town or their opponents Limerick.

The game would go ahead in mid-to-late July as Town look to juggle what is becoming an increasingly busy pre-season schedule.

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The Blues have already agreed to play FAI Premier League leaders Cork City at Turner' Cross on Sunday July 19, two days after the Rebels play St Patrick in a league match.

That will be squeezed in between friendlies at Brentford on Wednesday, July 15 and Southend, on Wednesday July 22.

The return of Keane with his new club Ipswich Town is eagerly anticipated by the people of Cork who avidly follow their famous son's career.

He took Sunderland there last year after keeping then in the Premier League a year after winning the Championship title at the first attempt the year before.

Although Cork-born Billy Clarke will no longer be with the Blues after being released earlier this month, Dubliners Owen Garvan and Shane supple will both be in the squad.

Garvan has played on the Cork pitch before with the Republic of Ireland Under 21s, as has Alan Quinn.

City boss Paul Doolin said: “Roy Keane is obviously a very popular figure in Cork and will be a very welcome visitor to Turner's Cross.

“It's always good to have friendly matches against English clubs, and it is also good for Cork City as a club.

“I would hope there would be a very good turnout for the game as there was for the game against Sunderland a couple of years ago.”

Cork are celebrating their 25th anniversary but are going through a tough time of late financially.

After recently coming out of examinership (the equivalent of administration) the club faces a hearing next week which will determine their tax liabilities with the Irish Inland Revenue.

* Chris Casement, released by Town earlier this month, has been called into the full Northern Ireland squad to face Italy in a friendly next month.

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