The first international break of the new season is underway and with fixtures scheduled over the weekend and into next week, it’s going to be a busy one for Latics players on duty with their national teams.
Already three have been involved with James McCarthy making his first start for the Republic of Ireland in Friday’s World Cup Qualification match away to Kazakhstan.
McCarthy played the full 90 minutes in a 2-1 win for Giovanni Trapattoni’s side who had to come behind and score twice in the final two minutes of the game to secure victory. The 21-year-old could take on his Latics team-mate Ali Al Habsi on Tuesday night when his country take on Oman at Craven Cottage in an international friendly.
Elsewhere over the last couple of days two of the Club’s rising stars have been in action, with Slovakia Under 21 Filip Orsula finding the back of the net after coming off the bench as his team beat France 2-1 at home in their Under 21 Euro 2013 Championships Qualifier. They’ll face Kazakhstan next on Monday night in their next group match.
Rob Kiernan captained his country in the same competition away to Hungary, but a 2-1 defeat put paid to any hopes the Republic of Ireland Under 21 had of qualifying for next year’s tournament. Their final group game will be against leaders Italy on Monday, who have already qualified.
In the South American qualifiers, Antolin Alcaraz and Maynor Figueroa are expected to be in action over the coming days.
Alcaraz and Paraguay face Argentina in a World Cup Qualification match on Friday night, about the same time that Maynor Figueroa and Honduras meet Cuba who they’ll play again on Tuesday when Paraguay play Venezuela.
Scotland begin their journey to Brazil 2014, kicking off their qualification campaign against Serbia on Saturday with Latics skipper Gary Caldwell and Shaun Maloney set to be involved. They’ll play again on Tuesday against Macedonia in another qualifier.
Finally, Arouna Kone will hopefully paly his first international match since joining Wigan Athletic when Ivory Coast take on Senegal in a friendly match on Saturday.