KEVIN KILBANE will go into FA Cup action at Arsenal on Sunday buoyed by a fresh call-up by the Republic of Ireland.
Town’s on-loan Hull midfielder will hope to add to his record haul of 108 caps in the opening Carling Nations Cup clash with Wales in Dublin on Tuesday, February 8.
The call-up means the Hull player will miss the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy Northern final second leg against Carlisle at the Galpharm, when Town will aim to overturn a 4-0 deficit.
If he plays, Kilbane will become Town’s first Republic international since Mick Meagan in 1968 and only their fourth ever, after Bill Hayes and Pat Saward.
Sources in Dublin suggest he checked with Republic coach Giovanni Trapattoni that dropping intro League I wouldn’t affect his chances of winning further caps.
The 33-year-old former Preston, West Brom, Sunderland, Everton and Wigan player has more experience of Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium than any of his Town teammates.
He played there three times with Wigan, suffering defeat on each occasion.
The inaugural Carling Nations Cup also involves Scotland and Northern Ireland. The sides will compete in a mini-league with all six games taking place at the new Aviva Stadium in Dublin.
Former Town captain Jon Worthington has joined Bradford City on loan from Oldham.
It’s a second loan stint of the season for the 27-year-old, who previously had a spell at non-league Fleetwood.
Worthington left Town for Oldham in 2009 but was transfer-listed by new boss Paul Dickov last summer.