Newcastle's Leon Best Out Of Ireland Squad

Posted by admin on Sunday, 6 February 2011

Young striker suffering with a hamstring injury.
Newcastle striker Leon Best has been forced to withdraw from Giovanni Trapattoni's Republic of Ireland squad to face Wales in the Nations Cup on Tuesday night.

Best damaged a hamstring whilst spearheading Newcastle’s four goal fight back against Arsenal on Saturday.

The 24-year-old grabbed the second of Newcastle’s four goals in an epic encounter at St James' Park but was replaced in the final minutes by Danny Guthrie.

Best was signed from Coventry City last season to bolster Newcastle’s promotion push but failed to make an impact until this season when notching a hat-trick in the 5-0 drubbing of West Ham.

Boasting four goals in just six Premier League starts, the injury comes as a blow to the Magpies who are now short of attacking options having lost Andy Carroll to Liverpool and Shola Ameobi to a fractured cheekbone in the space of a week.

The situation has prompted Newcastle boss Alan Pardew to scour the free-transfer market, with Middlesbrough old boy Jeremie Aliadiere linked as a potential short-term solution.

Bristol City striker Andy Keogh has been drafted into the Republic of Ireland squad as cover for Best and manager Giovanni Trapattoni has also lost Portsmouth midfielder Liam Lawrence to a calf injury.

The Republic enter Tuesday night’s clash with Wales without a win in three.