Richard Dunne could miss Euro 2012 as he is set to miss the rest of the season after breaking his collarbone recently.
Such is Dunne’s importance to this Irish side that he will likely be taken to the European Championships, but this is a devastating blow for an Irish side which will be building from the back and such is the quality of opposition the Boys in Green will face – vast swathes of games are likely to be played on the back foot.
The centre-half broke his collarbone during Villa’s league defeat to Manchester City earlier this month and while it was initially believed that Dunne would be back on the pitch in April, it has emerged that Dunne will be excluded from Villa’s remaining 13 league games. The news will undoubtedly worry Ireland boss Giovanni Trappatoni as he looks to put the final touches on his squad prior to the Euro 2012 tournament in Poland in June.
While Dunne will miss the rest of the Premier League season, he will still be available for selection by Trappatoni if he is fully recovered by June. However, this means that his next competitve outing will be against Croatia in Ireland’s opening game of the tournament on June 10. Even though Ireland have two friendlies scheduled against Bosnia-Herzegovina and Hungary in the fortnight prior to the tournament, it is unlikely that Trappatoni will risk the 32-year-old unless he his completely recovered and match fit. Dunne is currently recovering from an operation on the fracture in his collarbone, and is not set to return to training until next month at the earliest.