Several Aston Villa players are involved in international games during the break. We’ve broken down who’s playing, and when, so you can keep up with our squad as they play for their National side.
Words by Harry Trend (@HazaTrand)
Several Aston Villa players will be plying their trade for their countries over the international break.
Wales v Trinidad and Tobago, Wednesday 19:45 and Wales v Slovakia, Sunday 14:00
Neil Taylor has re-acclaimed his place in Aston Villa’s starting eleven recently, and the 30-year-old has been included in Ryan Giggs Wales squad for the upcoming friendly against Trinidad and Tobago, tomorrow at 19:45.
Taylor’s Wales will then take on Slovakia in the opening match of Group E in the UEFA Euro Qualifiers.
Kazakhstan v Scotland, Thursday 15:00 and San Marino v Scotland, Sunday 17:00
John McGinn is the other home international called up for duty.
The Scotsman has been representing his country since 2016 and will be part of the squad that faces Kazakhstan and San Marino – both of which are away from home.
Gibraltar v Ireland, Saturday 17:00 and Ireland v Georgia, Tuesday 19:45
Glenn Whelan, Conor Hourihane and the loaned-out Scott Hogan have all been called up to feature in Mick McCarthy’s second debut as Republic of Ireland manager, facing Gibraltar and Georgia in their UEFA Euro Qualifiers.
McCarthy has recently referred to Glenn Whelan as “remarkable”, making reference to his age and the fact that he doesn’t “look like an old man on the pitch”, and he wouldn’t be with the squad to just “make up the numbers.”
Croatia v Azerbaijan, Thursday 19:45 and Hungary v Croatia, Sunday 17:00
Onto mainland Europe now, and Lovre Kalinic has been drafted up to Zlatko Dalić’s Croatia squad. There are two other goalkeepers in the squad so it remains to be seen whether he’ll get game time, as he’s not played club football since being concussed in Aston Villa’s 2-0 loss to West Brom in mid-February.
However, this could be a vital opportunity for Kalinic to impress Smith and challenge Jed Steer for the goalkeepers jersey.
Ivory Coast v Rwanda, Satuday 17:00
Jonathan Kodjia is part of the Ivory Coast squad who will play their final African Cup of Nations Qualifier against Rwanda.
The 29-year-old will be looking to add to his tally of seven goals in thirteen Les Elephants games.
England U21 v Poland U21, Thursday and England U21 v Germany U21, Tuesday
Finally, Tammy Abraham was picked by Aidy Boothroyd for the England U21 squad.
With the striker picking up a knock on the weekend, it may be unlikely that he’ll feature against Poland or Germany, but has travelled nevertheless.