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O'Neill releases Irish pair

Republic of Ireland manager Martin O'Neill has released skipper Robbie Keane and midfielder Darron Gibson from his squad ahead of Tuesday's friendly against the United States.

Keane, who was used only as a substitute in Friday night's 1-0 Euro 2016 defeat in Scotland, has been allowed to return to club LA Galaxy, who face Seattle Sounders in the MLS play-offs next Sunday.

Everton midfielder Gibson, who only returned to action from a 10-month injury lay-off in September, is heading back to Merseyside with a minor knee problem.

A spokesman for the Football Association of Ireland said: "The Republic of Ireland squad trained today at Gannon Park, Malahide. Players who did not play the full match yesterday evening took part.

"Following training, Robbie Keane has been released to return to his club. Darron Gibson has also been released to assist recovery to a minor knock to the knee. "

Ireland face the USA in a friendly at the Aviva Stadium in their final fixture of 2014, and will look to end on a high note after suffering the first defeat of their Euro 2016 qualifying campaign in Glasgow.

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