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Koeman blasts O'Neill over McCarthy injury

LIVERPOOL V EVERTON

Koeman blasts O'Neill over McCarthy injury

Ahead of this weekend's Merseyside Derby, Everton manager Ronald Koeman vented frustration at both O'Neill and McCarthy himself over the player's injury

Ahead of this weekend's Merseyside Derby, Everton manager Ronald Koeman vented frustration at both O'Neill and McCarthy himself over the player's injury

Everton manager Ronald Koeman has blasted Republic of Ireland coach Martin O'Neill for failing to protect James McCarthy from injury.

McCarthy has been ruled out of Saturday's vital Merseyside Derby against Liverpool after suffering a hamstring problem while on international duty with Ireland. Find out how and where to watch that clash at Anfield.

McCarthy a doubt before Ireland v Wales

Despite missing Everton's last two games because of a hamstring complaint, McCarthy was named in the Republic's starting line-up for their World Cup qualifier against Wales last Friday, only to then be forced to withdraw having aggravated it just before kick-off. 

Koeman admitted the player needed to take responsibility as well, but he was especially critical of O'Neill, who had already been criticised by the Dutchman earlier this season over McCarthy's use by the Republic after suffering another injury.

Ahead of this weekend's Merseyside Derby, Everton manager Ronald Koeman vented frustration at both O'Neill and McCarthy himself over the player's injury

Koeman blasts O'Neill over McCarthy injury

"James had an injury when he reported for Ireland duty last week. Our medical team made the Ireland medical team aware of this, of course," Koeman said on Friday.

"Everton's medical team advised extreme caution, not only due to the current injury but due to previous injuries too, and the assessment by the Ireland medical team was that it would be a high risk for James to play against Wales."

Koeman: McCarthy partly responsible

The ex-Southampton manager continued: "but, of course, James has a strong desire to play for his country. So, when asked if he was fit to play, he said he felt he was fit, and he was selected to start the game by the Ireland manager who, in my opinion, in this instance was not protecting the player.

"Clearly James was not fit to play. He had trained only for two days with Ireland and he broke down during the warm up.

"I spoke to James, and he needs to take responsibility for this. But it is not the first time."

McCarthy was not the only Everton player to suffer an injury in this match. Seamus Coleman suffered a wince-inducing leg break in the same match, as a result of a tackle by Neil Taylor. In a feisty affair in Dublin, John O'Shea also accused Gareth Bale of having attempted to injure him.

Follow the live coverage match of Premier League Week 29 between: Liverpool vs Everton.

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