Evans brothers return to NI squad as Charles lands call-up

Tuesday, May 21, 2024

BELFAST: Jonny and Corry Evans are both back in the Northern Ireland squad for June’s friendlies against Spain and Andorra.

Manchester United defender Jonny Evans missed the March internationals as he managed calf and foot injuries, while Sunderland midfielder Corry only returned to action at club level in April after 15 months out with a serious knee injury.

Both players are out of contract at their respective clubs this summer, with Corry confirming he will leave the Black Cats.They are among six changes to Michael O’Neill’s squad, with Ethan Galbraith, Dale Taylor, Aaron Donnelly and 18-year-old goalkeeper Pierce Charles also coming in.

It is a first senior call-up for Sheffield Wednesday’s Charles, brother of Southampton midfielder Shea Charles, who is also in the squad.Jamal Lewis and Ross McCausland, who were both named in the original squad for March before being forced to withdraw, are also in.

Paddy McNair, who is leaving Middlesbrough this summer, and George Saville are absent, while Ali McCann, Paddy Lane, Luke Southwood and Stephen McMullan also drop out of the squad.

O’Neill’s side will play Spain in Mallorca on June 8 in Palma before facing Andorra in Murcia three days later.Northern Ireland’s young side have built momentum in recent games, drawing with Romania and beating Scotland in March on the back of their Euro 2024 qualifying win over Denmark at the end of last year.